Posts filed under ‘Press’
Last week we witnessed what we as educators love the most: students using their creativity and analytical thinking skills to act politically and support a cause in which they believe. NYU Divest made their case to the administration for why our university should divest from fossil fuels, and why the university should be part of a transparent decision process. Their call was in line with an overwhelming vote by the faculty senate last year and a recent letter signed by over 200 faculty members. They also asked that our new leadership should respect what our former president John Sexton had promised them in writing, namely to let the students present their case at NYU’s board meeting.
The venue they chose was both original and humorous: they staged their protest in the administration elevator in Bobst, tweeting #RiseWithUs. Instead of engaging the students in a meaningful way on issues of transparency and keeping the promise of a meeting with the board, the administration copied the students’ photo IDs, threatened them with disciplinary action (including immediate suspension) and contacted their parents.
While university disciplinary procedure might allow for immediate suspension in exceptional circumstances, this approach strikes us as heavy-handed and unnecessary. In times of conflict, our students should be treated as young adults, not as kids in need of parental supervision. Yet our point is not so much about NYU procedure, but culture. What the administration has created is an atmosphere of fear among our students where there should be safety and tolerance. We, as faculty at NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study, take pride in our students’ commitment to addressing issues that are important for our university and the world.
Peder Anker, Sinan Antoon, Gianpaolo Baiocchi, Paula Chakravartty, Anne DeWitt, Valerie Forman, Andrea L Gadberry, Hannah R Gurman, Louise Harpman, Mitchell Joachim, Ritty Lukose, Amanda K Petrusich, Kim Phillips-Fein, Mark Read, Greg Vargo, Alejandro Velasco
Link to the conference here.
“New York City Council to vote on disposable grocery bag 10-cent fee” by Carly Krakow, posted April 4, 2014.
“NYU to take proactive approach to emission reduction,” by Su Sie Park, posted April 25, 2013.
“GLOBAL Design NYU presents environmental architecture,” by Tatiana Baez, posted September 24, 2012.
“From Bauhaus to Ecohouse: A Short History of Ecological Design,” in Behind the Green Door: Architecture and the Desire for Sustainability, Helle Benedicte Berg (ed.), (Oslo: Oslo Architecture Triennale, 2013), 129-139.
Order the catalogue here.
“Elsewhere Envisioned – Global Design NYU” Urbanista, Feb 2013.
Arthur Tansley once amazed his botanical friends by arguing that the psychologist Sigmund Freud was the most important thinker since Jesus. It was indeed remarkable statement for a man who is known for his contributions to the field of ecology. Yet Tansley was also a keen contributor to research on sex-psychology and I suggest here that some of his ecological thinking emerged from his work in social psychology.