PSU-AAUP met last Tuesday with members for lunch and a discussion on “Academic Freedom in Troubling Times.” Jennifer Ruth, VP of Academic Freedom and Grievances, discussed the growing problem of targeted harassment in colleges and universities. This issue occurs when a faculty member is singled out in the national media for having said something in the classroom or on social media and pressure is subsequently brought to bear on universities to “discipline” their faculty. We discussed some current cases and how we might support a member on our campus if they are targeted. VP Ruth also discussed the range of academic freedom protections for academic professionals, non-tenure-track faculty, and tenure-track faculty. Bob Liebman, the VP of Academic Freedom and Governance for AAUP Oregon, discussed issues that have unfolded on other local campuses. Members then discussed various areas of concern, such as how PSU-AAUP can help ensure that the Faculty Senate Resolution regarding the Confucius Institute will be respected by President Shoureshi. We hope to continue to provide compelling programming that will continue to engage the concerns of our members.
Vice President, Membership and Organizing