Letter to the Editor: MU-AAUP supports student petition

Letter to the Editor: MU-AAUP supports student petition

September 9, 2014

Dear Editor:

As stated in a September 8th 2015 The Wood Word article, a group of students known as “Students for a Better Marywood” have petitioned the University administration, Board of Trustees, and other campus leaders to “assemble an open dialogue to address concerns” of the student body, faculty, and staff.

The Marywood University Chapter of the American Association of University Professors (MU-AAUP) fully supports the petition submitted by Students for a Better Marywood and reaffirms AAUP’s Joint Statement of Rights and Freedoms of Students (1992) that states the following.

Students and student organizations should be free to examine and discuss all questions of interest to them and to express opinions publicly and privately. They should always be free to support causes by orderly means that do not disrupt the regular and essential operations of the institution (Freedom of Inquiry and Expression [Section 2a]).

As constituents of the academic community, students should be free, individually and collectively, to express their views on issues of institutional policy and on matters of general interest to the student body.The student body should have clearly defined means to participate in the formulation and application of institutional policy affecting academic and student affairs (Student Participation in Institutional Government [Section 3]). 

While we understand that there are “structures inplace in which administrators, staff, faculty and students can have constructive dialogue in a non-public manner,” as noted by VPAA Dr. Levine, we agree with Sr. Anne’s statement: “We protect and respect the right of people to assemble and express their views because that is the heart of a university education.”

MU-AAUP works with the AAUP at the national, state, and local levels to effectively promote shared governance and academic freedom in higher education.

On behalf of MU-AAUP,

Francis J. DeMatteo, Ed.D., NCSP

MU-AAUP Secretary/Treasurer