Quick takeaway: If you want a say over your teaching schedule in the years and decades to come, please exercise your right to vote and to protest Infosilem. This morning at 8am the Official Strike Authorization ballot was sent to all those who haven't yet voted with a link to cast your vote. Please look for that email in your Rutgers email inbox and vote today if you haven't already.
Another Cornerstone-like fiasco, this time with even more longterm devastating effects, is on its way to every Rutgers campus. Based on reports we have received from departments, from chairs, as well as comments at town hall meetings in New Brunswick we find that the more we learn about Infosilem the more it appears to threaten research, service, and even—the problem it claims to solve—teaching across all of Rutgers University. Faculty in New Brunswick now understand that the scheduling software will drastically reduce our ability to plan research, service, and teaching. The robot will interfere with our family and personal lives too, making it impossible for some parents to pick up children from day care and school.
Already, robo-scheduling is creating problems that break your heart. A faculty member requested to be available to care for his terminally ill child on Tuesdays and Thursdays (his wife does the other two days but has a conflict with these). He wrote to the Administration seeking to block those days from teaching. The Administration refused his request stating that it does not meet one of the accommodation categories! So he wrote to his Union, and we are writing to you, the membership, to help us fight back.
For our students, Infosilem lays traps by scheduling important courses at the same time and/or on days and times that will make it harder for them to take the courses they need and graduate in a timely manner. And wait until it hits Camden and Newark, which it is scheduled to do—without even a simulation—on May 1st. Students enrolled in departments federated with NJIT or taking courses at Camden County College may very well not be able to pursue their majors. We want as much information as possible, so please write to us with your particular issue firstname.lastname@example.org. And don't forget to vote on the Official Strike Authorization ballot in your Rutgers email inbox at 8am today.
Deepa and David
Deepa Kumar, President, Rutgers AAUP-AFT
David M. Hughes, VP, Rutgers AAUP-AFT