Which side are you on?

 

Solidarity, brothers and sisters.

 

The Cynic supports the peaceful protests of the Occupy Wall Street movement and its offshoot at UVM, Occupy Bailey/Howe.

 

The University is very much a microcosm of what is going on nationally. Here, the administration clashes with faculty and staff just like big business clashes with organized labor.

 

 

There are outrageous bonuses for university officials just as there are for bank executives.

 

The Burlington Free Press noted Tuesday that three unions have not reached an agreement about their contracts with the University and are now entering mediation. 

 

Full-time faculty, service workers and UVM Police have expired contracts — since June.

 

The Cynic believes that the quality of education at UVM is suffering because University finances are not prioritized correctly. 

 

A decreased number of tenure-track faculty, larger class sizes and fewer class offerings all contribute to a lower quality education for us.

 

The Cynic supports the efforts of UVM staff members, who face stagnant salaries and having to pay more for benefits, to unionize. We support the students who have stood up to speak up against the practices of Wall Street and Waterman.

 

Students have a legitimate grievance with the pay inequity at UVM. 

 

Why will former President Fogel return to the English department making $80,000 more than his colleagues?

 

Why does an assistant hockey coach make more than the director of the film and television studies department? 

 

Why do more than 80 employees at the University make more than $150,000, and 28 make more than $200,000? In 2008, just 17 employees made more than $200k. To put this in perspective, Vermont’s senators, Bernie Sanders and Patrick Leahy, have a base salary of $174,000.

 

At a time of staff members see smaller pay raises, why are top officials earning five-figure raises?

 

A 2011 study by the faculty union, United Academics, found that compared to 21 similarly-sized public and private institutions across the country, UVM professors on average make $23,500 less annually.

 

UVM students have a right to be outraged about how the University pays its faculty, administrators and staff — and The Cynic supports their efforts for a more open dialogue.