Last week Clare wrote about the strikes happening in 2 Toronto based Universities.
Teaching Assistants and Course Instructors are still on strike. The issues are complex and go beyond pay increase. Pay amount, pay structure, working conditions and job security are pieces of the intolerable job structure. The situation of poor, unstable working conditions for graduate students and non-tenured faculty continues to be a continent-wide misfortune. I recently read an article about the experiences of an adjunct-professor in Washington, DC.
The author writes about her experience:
There were things about the work I loved. One student wrote an excellent research paper on creative arts therapy as a healing tool for depression sufferers; the paper landed her a fellowship working with cancer patients. When I saw students nodding their heads during lessons on essay structure or avoiding wordiness, I felt reenergized. In fact, engaging students was a challenge I loved. The working conditions were what drained me completely.
There are similar stories here in Toronto and across Ontario. The stories are grim and unfortunate. I (yiola) look forward to posts where I can write about changes to the status of non-tenured faculty, teaching assistants and the ever so needed university staff members.