Monday Memo: news & views about working at UC

For the Week of July 17, 2017

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UC studentsIn the wake of the scathing audit of UC published by the state in April, the regents increased their scrutiny of the Office of the President and its proposed 2017–18 budget during their meeting last week. The audit scandal prompted the Legislature to fund UCOP from money that had been earmarked for the campuses, a move that the regents protested as unconstitutional.

Four new regents were added to the board earlier this year and made their first appearance at a July 14 meeting. Among them were former legislator Ellen Tausher, as well as Lark Park, a senior policy advisor to Governor Jerry Brown and the board’s only Asian American member.


First year UC students

The regents approved the appointment of Alexander Bustamante, inspector general for the Los Angeles police department, as senior vice president and chief compliance and audit officer.

UC Berkeley’s new chancellor Carol Christ – the campus’s first ever woman chancellor –has opted not to live in the chancellor’s on-campus house. The university spent more than $1 million renovating the house for outgoing chancellor Nicholas Dirks.

UC Davis admitted 60% of its international applicants for the coming school year, while admitting only 36% of in-state applicants, according to the Sacramento Bee. Because it charges out-of-state and international students significantly more in fees than in-state students, UC has increased its enrollments to close budget gaps.

In recent years, universities have turned to the widespread use of contingent academic workers, who don’t have job security, benefits, or living wages. Graduate student employee unions offer a path for fighting back, according to this op-ed in In These Times.

After a six-year contract campaign at the City University of New York, adjunct professors – who are contingent academic workers – are starting to see benefits from the contract gains they won around job security.

Some 400 reporters, editors and producers at National Public Radio have avoided a walkout over a reduced pay tier for new employees, after coming to a new three-year agreement with management. The workers had launched a community campaign under the banner #WeMakeNPR and received wide support from listeners.

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