On Thursday, February 25, at 7 p.m., we’ll be holding our third Freedom School of the semester. The topic is “A New Deal for Higher Education,” and the featured speakers are Rutgers History Prof. Jennifer Mittelstadt, a union colleague and cofounder of Scholars for a New Deal for Higher Education, and Eleni Shirmer, an author, PhD candidate at University of Wisconsin-Madison in the Departments of Educational Policy and Curriculum & Instruction, and research associate with Pennsylvania State University’s Center for Global Workers’ Rights.
This Freedom School flows from our last session on “Why R Budget Matters,” and it comes days after Prof. Mittelstadt participated in the launch event for a new campaign, led by the AFT and AAUP nationally, to win “A New Deal for Higher Education.” For an introduction to the topic, watch that panel discussion, with remarks from Rep. Ayanna Pressley, Sen. Elizabeth Warren, AFT President Randi Weingarten, and AAUP President Irene Mulvey, among others.
Rutgers AAUP-AFT is organizing Freedom School in the tradition of Ella Baker, the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, and the 1960s civil rights movement. The pandemic has disrupted both our ordinary lives and how we connect to each other. We want Freedom School to be a virtual classroom and discussion space for union members, students, and the broader communities that Rutgers serves, with the goal of developing leadership and political consciousness for a new generation. Our sessions will feature speakers from within our Coalition of Rutgers Unions as well as the wider labor and social movements, discussing the themes that inform our current struggles for economic, racial, and social justice.
So please join us next Thursday, February 25, at 7 p.m. RSVP here for the Zoom link, forward this email to friends and colleagues who would be interested, and share the event on Facebook. Go to our Freedom School YouTube channel to watch past sessions—and please subscribe! If you have any questions about Freedom School or ideas about future sessions, email me at [email protected].
See you there!
Donna Murch, Executive Council, People of Color Caucus Co-Chair, Rutgers AAUP-AFT
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