Several Important Announcements

Posted on: 
April 4, 2016

On Friday, March 11, UB sent an email to eligible TAs and GAs announcing the 2015-16 professional development award/fund (PDF).  The deadline for applications to the Professional Development Fund is this Friday, April 8th, at 5PM. Applications should be emailed to at ub-IndividualDevelopmentAwards@buffalo.edu. You must send your application to this address — replying to this message or emailing one of your union representatives doesn’t count as a successful application.

We will be holding office hours in the GSEU office (200A Commons) to answer questions about the PDF application process. If you have a question or would like to have one of us take a look at your application, feel free to stop by Wednesday from 3-5, Thursday from 10:30-Noon, and Friday from 9-Noon. Important details about PDF from a previous email can be found below:

PDF is a pot of money the union has negotiated with SUNY to reimburse our members for expenses related to their development as scholars and teachers.  You can find the PDF guidelines here:  http://www.goer.ny.gov/Training_Development/gseu/index.cfm and the application here: http://www.goer.ny.gov/Training_Development/gseu/GSEU_Prof_Dev_Award_Application.pdf

PDF applications are evaluated jointly by the union and UB. Last year, UB decided to begin reading the program guidelines in a manner that violated years of precedent as well as common sense, rejecting applications for activities that were required as part of the applicant’s degree program. This meant that dozens of applications to help pay for dissertation research were rejected. The union spent months fighting with UB, and we won funding for almost all of those who were unfairly rejected. The union currently has an improper practices (IP) charge pending against UB at the Public Employment Relations Board (PERB).  Until that IP charge is settled in our favor, UB will continue to unfairly reject PDF applications that seek to reimburse dissertation research expenses. Our position is that dissertation research is a legitimate activity for PDF funding. If you would like to apply for dissertation research, please do. However, you should avoid words like “dissertation” and “graduation” in your application. If you have any questions, please contact one of your union officers.

Our contract negotiations with New York State begin on May 5th, and we’d like your input. Specifically, we’re looking for testimonials from GSEU members about the impact that student fees have on your finances. We’re tired of having to pay fees to our employer, so if you have a horror story to share, we’d love to hear it (and bring it with us to the bargaining table. Please send your testimonials to Business Agent Juhi Roy (juhiroy@gmail.com).

Our international union (CWA) has endorsed Sen. Bernie Sanders for president. You can read more about that decision herehttp://www.cwa-union.org/news/entry/cwa_endorses_sen_bernie_sanders_for_president. The New York primary will be held on April 19th.

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