On behalf of your AASUA, I sincerely wish you a Happy New Year! I hope you all had a chance for some downtime and rest over the holidays.
I am sending you this note to share two separate items with you.
The first is to advise you that yesterday a province-wide group of academic, staff, and student associations, working under the auspices of Public Interest Alberta, launched a new campaign in support of post-secondary education in Alberta. The campaign seeks to mobilize PSE stakeholders, and more importantly, Albertans at large, against further cuts to advanced education in Alberta, and offers a variety of options for action and dissemination. I encourage you to visit the website at https://www.stoppsecuts.ca/ to see how you can be a part of the campaign. The AASUA is a supporter of this campaign, and we plan to build on it with our own public-facing campaign commencing around mid-February.
I also wanted to share with you that the U of A Board of Governors’ decision last month to go against a recommendation of the General Faculties Council has raised concerns across the province and the country about the state of collegial governance at our university. In the last week, the University of Alberta has been the recipient of strong letters of concern and protest from the Confederation of Alberta Faculty Associations, the Canadian Association of University Teachers, and the Athabasca University Faculty Association. I have attached these letters for your information, and can share with you that we know more will be coming in the coming days and weeks.
The AASUA Executive will be watching closely to see how the U of A responds to this external pressure, as we continue to explore our options for continuing to defend and promote collegial shared governance at the U of A going forward.