Save Women's Studies Center and M.A. Program At FAU
NOTE: Signing this petition is FREE. You do NOT have to donate any money. We guarantee that any information collected will be handled with discretion and we will NOT sell your e-mail address. Thank you for your help! ****************** We, as students, community members, tax payers, academics, and concerned citizens, wish to express our disagreement with and strident opposition to Florida Atlantic University's recent proposal to suspend the Women's Studies Center and Masters Degree. We believe that the Women's Studies Center is indispensable to FAU's student body, faculty, and the university's overall academic reputation and integrity. Women's Studies M.A. students compose a majority of the only women's organization on campus (The Women's Studies Graduate Student Association [WSGSA]). Together the WSGSA and Women's Studies Center are the primary organizers and source of funding for all academic conferences, colloquium series, and special events that focus on women and women's experience (including for the past eleven years the Women's Studies Graduate Student conference, which has brought scholars and academics focusing on women's issues from across the country to FAU, and this year, the Internationally attended "Women's Leadership Forum," which is being financially sponsored and organized by the Women's Studies Center and WSGSA). Beyond these reasons, we believe that women are valuable as people and important subjects of academic inquiry. Women's experiences and writing have historically been excluded from academia. We firmly believe that the proposed suspension of the Women's Studies Center and M.A. degree is a horrific step backward in women's long fight for their deserved place in the academy. Additionally, we question the validity of the FAU administration's rationale for proposing this unjust suspension. When the total money allocated to "Education" in FAU's last published budget (2006-2007) is $239, 949, 841.00 and the Women's Studies Center and M.A. program (at an operating cost of $60,000) only account for a total .00025% of that budget, we must question whether or not "budget cuts" are an adequate explanation of the administrations decision. Both the President's salary and Athletics departments' budget have increased over the past year. From our perspective, the university has chosen its priorities; These priorities represent an inexcusable attack on all women in and out of the academy. At a university where the average salary of a male professor is $16, 000.00 higher than the average salary of a female professor, how else are we to interpret the proposed suspension of the Women's Studies Center and M.A. program than as an attack on women Women have fought hard to earn their rightful place in society in general and the academy in particular. To allow this suspension to occur would be a slap in the face to every women's rights advocate in American history. We refuse to allow the "budget decisions" of the administration at FAU to take any of this space away from women. We refuse to let "budget cuts" stand as an excuse for cutting all or a majority of academic conferences, colloquium series, graduate courses, and special events that focus on women lives, writing, and experiences. We have signed this letter for two reasons: 1) as a hope that the university and administration will rethink and subsequently recant the proposed suspension of the Women's Studies Center and M.A. program 2) as a pledge to respond to this outrage in an organized fashion with media support and protest if the university and administration do not take this proposal off of the table by March 9th. Please respond to this letter via e-mail only by March 9th. Sincerely, SaveFAU@gmail.com **************** NOTE: Signing this petition is FREE. You do NOT have to donate any money. We guarantee that any information collected will be handled with discretion and we will NOT sell your e-mail address. Thank you for your help!