Letter to the editor: to both students and families, faculty will be there to greet you Tuesday, Aug. 31 and Wednesday, Sept. 1

Oakland+University+Associate+Professor+in+the+Department+of+Organizational+Leadership+James+Quinn.

Photo courtesy of James Quinn

Oakland University Associate Professor in the Department of Organizational Leadership James Quinn.

James Quinn, Contributor

James Quinn

August 30th, 2021

In its letter of August 30th (Oakland has asked the AAUP to make sure that Moodle be fully deployed per normal procedures), the OU Negotiating Team states that ‘Our joint mission is to support students and student success as best we can and not allow labor relations to interfere.’ 

On the contrary, Oakland University’s mission to achieve maximum success for all students surely requires that students, staff, and faculty work together. Given relevant information, OU students readily recognize that ‘faculty working conditions are student learning conditions,’ and for the negotiating team to adopt as part of its stand ‘Our joint mission is to… not allow labor relations to interfere’ (read: ‘not allow current contract negotiations between Oakland and the AAUP to interfere’) simply does not make sense. 

How is it appropriate by the negotiating team to consider part of its mission to ‘not allow labor relations to interfere’? Rather, wouldn’t the following approach to OU students be more appropriate, welcoming, and inclusive: ‘Please come and meet with us. We want to hear your views.’

In recent years, OU administration has provided budget figures verifying that student tuition accounts for approximately 80% of the university’s annual general fund revenue. When students are aware of this information, it seems clear that they do wish their views to be considered. [Yet, Oakland does not wish anyinterference’ by students!] One cannot imagine the OU Negotiating Team’s view of ‘interference’ by parents and others who support our students financially and otherwise!!

However, to facilitate maximum distribution of information regarding current contract negotiations to both students and families, faculty will be present during the Tuesday (8/31) and Wednesday (9/01) move-in days. We look forward to welcoming you!

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