The University of Alaska is in fiscal crisis. Programs are being cut, jobs eliminated. Hiring freezes, tuition increases, cancelled classes, and massive student loan debt are the new normal. Staff are being downsized and can be furloughed as early as January. Faculty are asked to teach extra classes for no pay. Faculty who retire or quit are not being replaced or are replaced by adjuncts who earn poverty wages. Routine maintenance has been repeatedly deferred. Travel funding has been slashed. Entire departments are threatened with closure. University of Alaska Fairbanks faces a $12-16M deficit, and the other campuses are in similar dire straits.
What does the Board of Regents do? They give the UA President a $320K retention bonus.
If you think this is a bone-headed decision, please do something. Write a letter to the editor, blog about it, post on social media, tweet it, call your friends and family, call the University’s public relations office or alumni office. You are also invited to a demonstration on Friday, August 8, 4:00-6:00PM at the University of Alaska Fairbanks’ entrance on the corner of University and College. Bring signs, or make a sign using the materials graciously donated by a local labor union.