Monday, September 28, 2009

Say What?

The results of the faculty poll are out and approximately 60% of the faculty that voted indicated that it had little or no confidence " in the ability of central administration to lead us through the tough challenges we face now and in the foreseeable future."

Check out the Wildcat article here: "Seven of the 10 poll questions asked faculty for their opinions on the upper administration’s faculty support, transparency and handling of the UA transformation. In all seven such questions, results showed faculty favoring the answers denouncing Shelton and Hay."

UA Defender also has some statistics and commentary.

President Shelton has already written a response to the campus community (we won't even discuss that the link again ends in "press comm", leading us to believe that it's not for the university community at all): "While we have attempted to be as transparent in this process as possible, it is apparent that we need to do more, both in sharing details of the monumental budget dilemma that we face, and in engaging our faculty in the search for solutions."

Well, yeah. It's about time. Although, isn't this the same rhetoric we heard last year in just about every press communication the administration sent out?
Feel free to read them for yourself. Here are a few highlights:
  • June 27, 2008: "That process takes time and must be handled carefully with considered and timely input from faculty and staff, but it is a necessary component of the prioritization of our strategic objectives, which is what underpins our budget allocations."
  • Sept. 3, 2008: "Change is never easy. At a university as complex as the UA, real change cannot occur without input and support from a wide range of groups, primarily our faculty and our staff. With that in mind, Provost Hay has appointed several committees that will address a range of important issues, from how we can restructure ourselves across our colleges and departments, to how we offer our curriculum and reward excellence in teaching, to how we make the right decisions on strategic research investments, to the structural changes that would both save money and make us stronger academically."
  • Jan. 28, 2009: "While it may seem a bit cliché, it is nevertheless true that the faculty are the heart of our University. It is the strength of our faculty that establishes our reputation as a premier international institution. Our entire University community – students, staff, visitors, alumni, donors, and supporters across the state – collectively benefit from, and are inspired by, the work of our faculty. Regardless of the outcome of the budget deliberations, we are committed to maintain a world-class faculty and to strategically invest in those core areas of greatness that will propel the UA into the coming decades."
  • February 2, 2009: "We deeply appreciate the commitment, determination and resilience demonstrated by faculty and staff on a daily basis. This is a difficult time, but the faculty and staff of The University of Arizona have shown that by being creative and innovative, by working harder and smarter, we can continue to set a standard for universities around the world to emulate."
Is the new press release a lot like the other empty promises we've become accustomed to hearing?

In Free Speech and Intimidation News:

Despite Evan Lisull and Jacob Miller's arrests, students continued to chalk across campus today.

According to the Wildcat and the AZ Star, the charges against the two free-speechers may be dropped: "Shelton has suggested students be referred to the Dean of Students Office as a possible code of conduct violation."

*These photos are from Monday afternoon. We do not know who marked on the vertical surfaces.

Although it is a relief that the criminal charges may be dismissed, a referral to the Dean of Students is still punishment for something that was not a violation of the rules. Lisull and Miller only admitted to chalking on the ground. Our reading of the code of conduct (Part F: Prohibited conduct) couldn't locate any violation involving the reasonable expression of free speech by marking on the ground in a non-permanent way. In fact, we couldn't find any prohibition of writing on walls, either.

From the Chalking Back blog: "If reflected upon for moment, one can see the same insidious tactic is at play: students will continue to be targeted for speech act violations. This is not over, and I implore all colleagues not to let up on this issue; as it stands now, our students will no longer have the same right to speech as faculty. "

If you'd like to get involved in the cause, Arizona for Education will be holding a meeting Tuesday at 7:30pm at the Bookend Cafe.

(Another) Chalk Protester Arrested

Another protester was arrested this morning while peacefully exercising his right to free speech: Evan Lisull of the Desert Lamp.

Evan Lisull was detained, cited, and released by the UAPD at the SE intersection of University and Park. The charge was criminal damage, and the arrest occurred at 644 AM today, Monday, Sept. 28.

So far from what we know, he was arrested for participating in today's reaction to the Jacob Miller arrest on Thursday. A group of students planned to write "Chalk is Speech" on ground surfaces (thereby abiding by the law as it is written) in an effort to exercise their right to free speech.

The Daily Wildcat has picked up the story. Read the details here: "Lisull said he wrote campus sidewalks, and not on any buildings or structures, “to address the issue of Mr. Miller’s charges.” “This is a very distinct civil liberties issue,” he said. “Regardless of how you think of the budget, you should be very concerned about this type of crackdown."

Also check out the Wildcat article on the backlash after the first arrest

Becky Pallack at the AZ Star is following today's arrest. Check out her
online article here:
“Chalk is speech,” Lisull said, noting his drawings are in reaction to the arrest Thursday of Jacob Miller, a 24-year-old graduate student, who was cited for criminal damage and interfering with an educational facility during a campus rally protesting cuts to public education."

Chalking Back: A blog to address the free speech issues of chalking and to provide an opportunity to express your disgust with the university's oppression of free speech has been launched by someone (or maybe several people) in the faculty:

We have contacted Evan, but he is hesitant to comment on the incident any further, at least until he consults with an attorney. If convicted, he is facing six months in jail and a $2,500 fine.

Anyone who was out this morning may have seen UA employees riding around in carts, washing off chalk remnants from the sidewalks.

If this is not systematic intimidation and suppression of free speech, we're not sure what is.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

The Tower

In case you've missed it, the UA community seems to be fighting back against "the tower," which is what some campus community members have become accustomed to calling the administration building.

  • In response to rampant rumors that the UA administration was planning to cut GAT/ RA benefits, the GPSC called a meeting with President Shelton, in which some very outspoken members of the gradstudent community grilled the president on lack of technology in the classroom, the failure to protect graduate students from increased workloads, the opacity of the administration's communications to the campus community (seriously, they're press releases), the consistent undervaluing of graduate student workers and the failure to recognize the importance of protecting graduate student rights.
  • The faculty senate conducted a poll, including questions that asked for faculty's level of confidence in the administration's ability to lead us through this economic crisis. The results will be out Monday or Tuesday morning and then we'll see where it goes. It seems that it's really ABOR's job to decide who should or should not be president or provost, but it would certainly be difficult for the Arizona Board of Regents to force someone on the faculty if they did, in fact, vote that they had no confidence in the person.
  • All of this unrest led up to Provost Hay and President Shelton writing a guest opinion for the AZ Daily Star. Just for fun, try doing a "Control F" search through the article. You won't find the words "education," "Student" (except in reference to GPSC and ASUA in the list at the bottom), "teach," "class" (except in the context of 'world-class'), or "learn." See also the Desert Lamp's response as well as our previous post in response to Shelton and Hay, called "Well, shame on us." Also check out Andy Seaton's mailbag article in the Wildcat. Seaton very bravely calls Shelton out on his lack of transparency.
  • Now this begs the question: Are you participating, or waiting on the sidelines to see who the victor is? Are you content to gripe around the water cooler and just be content to have a job while others lose theirs?
What can you do?
1) Write to your elected representatives in Phoenix and tell them you select your candidates based on their support of education funding. A list of helpful links is always up on Sallygradstudent (to the left).
2) Show up to protests and bring your outrage.
3) Organize in your department. Talk to other graduate students. Go to ASUA and GPSC meetings and demand strong representation.
4) Write letters to the editor of the Wildcat and the Star.
5) Give us and other bloggers and journalists a heads-up when something important is happening. You can also submit your thoughts any time by commenting on the blog or e-mailing us at

Jacob Miller's attorney is asking for your help. Please read her request here.

Read a letter of support for Jacob Miller drafted by concerned faculty members. Print it out, sign it and send it in to administration:
Robert N. Shelton, President
Administration Building, Room 712
1401 East University Boulevard
P.O. Box 210066
Tucson, Arizona 85721-0066
Or just cut and paste it and e-mail it in:

Friday, September 25, 2009


Jacob Miller's arrest is all over the news, turning a peaceful protest into a vortex of media attention. Tucson Citizen's Renee Schafer Horton is trying to get an interview with the UAPD, KGUN9 and KVOA4 both reported on it last night (with interviews from Jacob Miller), the Daily Wildcat filled up most of the front page with a photo from the story. The Desert Lamp has done a great job listing several other chalking incidents on campus.

Not only is the arrest of a peaceful protester disgusting, it also does not seem to us to follow the letter of the law.

Consider the definitions:
"A. A person commits interference with or disruption of an educational institution by doing any of the following:
1. Intentionally, knowingly or recklessly interfering with or disrupting the normal operations of an educational institution by either:
(a) Threatening to cause physical injury to any employee or student of an educational institution or any person on the property of an educational institution.
(b) Threatening to cause damage to any educational institution, the property of any educational institution or the property of any employee or student of an educational institution.
2. Intentionally or knowingly entering or remaining on the property of any educational institution for the purpose of interfering with the lawful use of the property or in any manner as to deny or interfere with the lawful use of the property by others.
3. Intentionally or knowingly refusing to obey a lawful order given pursuant to subsection C of this section.

A. A person commits criminal damage by recklessly:
1. Defacing or damaging property of another person; or
2. Tampering with property of another person so as substantially to impair its function or value; or
3. Tampering with the property of a utility.
4. Parking any vehicle in such a manner as to deprive livestock of access to the only reasonably available water.
5. Drawing or inscribing a message, slogan, sign or symbol that is made on any public or private building, structure or surface, except the ground, and that is made without permission of the owner."

Any short walk around campus will reveal numerous chalk drawings, usually made by the sororities. And yet, the police do not interfere with their right to free speech.

This is a serious matter. If Jacob Miller is convicted of these alledged "crimes", he stands to have a criminal record for the rest of his life, as well as fines and possible jail time. The university could then be in a position to suspend or expel him. His court date is October 14th, and if the charges haven't been dropped by then, we should take our peaceful protest to the courthouse.

Check out for more updates on the case.

Renee Schafer Horton of the TC online raises some important questions about the cost estimate for removing the chalk, and thanks to a quick-thinking graduate student with a camera, we have some answers for her. No power washing was done; the chalk was removed (as we watched) in less than 20 minutes by a group of 3 janitors.

According to UAPD, they may be looking for evidence of even more chalking so that they can hand out new citations. This is from Renee Schafer Horton's blog: Sgt. Juan Alvarez of UAPD said "There were other people that help Mr. Miller, but we couldn’t identify them. If we are able to identify them, we could pursue charges."
Is it just us, or does this come off as "Watch your backs, protesters"?
We will not be intimidated.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Double shame on us

If you have a 3 year old niece who likes writing on the sidewalk with chalk, be sure to keep her away from the U of A.

Apparently, writing on the sidewalk with chalk during a legal and peaceful protest is a criminal offense...a double offense.

Jacob Miller, a Geography graduate student (his name was released elsewhere, or we would not be identifying him here) was cited for criminal damage and disturbing an educational institution shortly after the rally ended today. Miller told the arizonaforeducation group that the arresting officer indicated that "the order to arrest him came from higher up." The citation is particularly outrageous considering that the sidewalk chalk was promptly removed by a group of janitors right after the crowd disbursed, meaning that no permanent damage of any kind was made.

Is the administration trying to quash protests? This is highly disturbing, considering that the rally was targeted at the state of education in Arizona in general and was meant to show solidarity with the UC walkouts. Although the transformation process was criticized, this was certainly not the only focus of the group.

Well, whoever ordered the arrest just turned what looked to us like a pretty medium-sized, uneventful, peaceful gathering into a major hotbed. Just another example of how attempts to intimidate protesters will only result in drawing more attention to their cause.

Congratulations, whoever you are. You just turned this story into front page news. The AZ Daily Star has posted a web report already! Keep an eye out for the Daily Wildcat to report on the incident tomorrow. More details on the event can also be found at

***Update: The protest and resulting arrest were covered on KGUN9 and KVOA4 news tonight.

From the KGUN9 report: "Steve Sherick, a criminal defense attorney in Tucson said, "It seems to me that the arrest and prosecution is pretty ridiculous." Sherick also believes the charges should be dropped, in violation of first amendment rights. "If you look at the cases under the first amendment, the public sidewalk is where people have the highest level of protection and free expression... let him draw his picture on the sidewalk. Let them have their demonstration, and as long as they're peaceful and not disruptive, forget about it. Let it go."

Sallygradstudent would also like to congratulate Jacob Miller on his very articulate interviews.

Well, Shame on Us

Pres. Shelton and Provost Hay published a guest opinion in the Daily Star today in defense of their cuts across campus. Could this be a pre-emptive response to the protest planned for today? Shelton and Hay outline their priorities for the transformation process:

• First, which units have the greatest capacity to generate new external revenue into the university above and beyond tuition dollars?
• Second, which units have the greatest outreach and impact on the citizens of our state? Our mission to serve the entire state and support its citizens is of the utmost importance during the financial crisis.
• And third, which units will most likely have a positive economic impact on the state, with an emphasis on job creation and growth?

It's pretty insulting that there is no mention of students in the entire list; no mention of teaching at all, as a matter of fact! The word EDUCATION does not even appear in the list. It reads more like a business growth plan than a mission statement for improving a university.

While that is unfortunate, even more upsetting is the dig Shelton and Hay take at "the dark corners of anonymous blogs". Well, shame on us.

If you've followed Sallygradstudent since the beginning (about a year ago), you know the reason the blog was founded. You know why we're anonymous. But just in case you forgot, here's a reminder.

From one of our first posts: "Due to the recent changes being made to the University of Arizona budget and the threatening language used by those in administration, we feel that it is time to stand up for ourselves. At the same time, the administration has admonished us, send intimidating e-mails and discouraged us from having our voices heard; this is why we must stay anonymous."

In response to graduate student efforts to distribute information about the transformation process, the administration reacted with intimidation.

Now ask yourself why we're anonymous.

For an overview of the transformation process and some words on today's rally, check out Becky Pallack's article in the Daily Star.

You can also read the UA Defender's response to Shelton and Hay's column for more of a faculty perspective.

Renee Schafer Horton's thorough reporting on the faculty poll is also very thorough and full of the details you've been looking for.

See you at 12:15 on the Mall.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Thursday's Rally: More details

Campus organizers in a variety of departments have come together to organize this rally for Thursday. Big numbers will show that the graduate and undergraduate student body is worth listening to. Small numbers might imply the opposite. Show up and be counted.

This comes from the organizers' website:

*** Arizona for Education Rally, Thursday 24th, 12.15pm, UA Mall ***

Arizona for Education is a worker-centered, collaborative initiative built of graduate assistants, student workers, faculty and staff - from many parts of Uof A. We would like to invite you to participate, whether as a committee member, asource of information (confidential or not), or as a participant in our rally this Thursday. Arizona for Education is united around building common cause, voicing concerns, getting the word out, and responding.

* Common cause: We are strengthening our ties and contacts across theUniversity. Everyone is affected when cuts affect vital areas.

* Voicing concerns: Many voices, especially those of vulnerable staff and TA's whose departments don't support organizing, are being silenced. We wish to make these voices heard without fear. Please let us know if you have a story that you want us to tell for you.

* Getting the word out: Our education, PR and demonstration committees are working hard to make sure the desk of the President is no longer the only source of information around here. We are publicizing here on campus via teach-ins, rallies and email campaigns. We are publicizing off-campus to Arizona media and on the Internet, and seek to target particular legislativedistricts for publicity in the future. Your participation is most welcome.

* Responding: We cannot prevent all cuts, but we can, if we unite, address ourresponse to their source in legislative districts. We can further address the devastating effects of the present administrative methods of instituting cuts.When cuts are mismanaged, we respond. When the full reality is distorted or simplified, we respond. When eliminated jobs, hemorrhaged faculty positions, disingenuous fees, disappearing funding sources and unfair workloads are swept under the carpet, we air them. We are content to be divided and voiceless no longer. Our first major responseis this Thursday, the 24th, at 12:15pm on the Mall.

Please attend. If you can't, please ask us how we can help address your concerns. We are also encouraging a teach-in this week and have attached a power point to help faculty and GTAs inform their classes about the budget cuts and what we can all do to speak out against them(

There are also a couple of facebook groups you can join to show support.

Monday, September 21, 2009

GPSC meeting with Shelton

Better late than never: there will be a graduate student forum with Shelton today at 4pm in the Regents' room in the Admin building. Bring your outrage.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Poll of No Confidence?

  • A faculty poll sent out on Friday afternoon may be attempting to take a vote of no confidence.
An anonymous comment to the theUA Defender blog said: "If you have looked at the online poll, one question specifically asks if you have confidence in the current administration's ability to lead this university forward. Vote No Confidence."

Other comments draw the process into question, asking whether the poll actually has any official power, how much of a percentage has to vote for no confidence in order to pass it, etc. At this time, it looks like the Faculty Senate is just putting out the feelers to see what the atmosphere really is. A few vocal members can always seem to be leading a charge that, in fact, has little backing. This way each individual gets one and only one response to the question.

The faculty can also go the route of providing a list of priorities or requests to the administration, such as they have on the site, i.e. no firings while the transition takes place (to avoid vengeful dismissals). From what we can tell, the Senate has not yet done this, at least in an official capacity. As powerful as blogs are, the administration can't be expected to respond to questions that have never been submitted directly to them.

  • Renee Schafer Horton of the Tucson Citizen online wonders whether the central issue is really Provost Hay's personality and attitude toward the cuts she makes.

A lack of empathy on Hay's part is disappointing (keep in mind that as far as we know, no upper-administrator has taken any kind of pay cut in all this time). At the same time, we probably wouldn't care much about her personality if she weren't firing so many people. We know times are tough, but firing someone you can't afford to pay and firing someone who disagrees with your way of doing things are certainly not the same thing.

  • The Wildcat reports on the Solidarity meeting that took place at Old Main on Friday.

Organizers have complained that the Wildcat's coverage was selective, choosing to focus on graduate students, when a variety of students, faculty and other university community members were present. Also, the Wildcat continues to spread the impression that graduate students are planning to walk out next week, when in fact, they are not (at least according to GPSC and the organizers of Friday's event.) If anyone has more info or would like a forum to post their statements, Sallygradstudent is always happy to oblige. You can put your name on it or post anonymously:

Underfunded, Underpaid, Underground.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What next?

Domestic partner benefits are cut by the State Legislature: The 'savings' from cutting out people's family members from coverage will not even be a drop in the bucket: "It costs the state $3 million to cover domestic partners and $625 million for other employees and their dependents, Ecker said. "

Just another reason for excellent researchers to flee to other states that are less discriminatory.

Someone (we can't figure out who is the organizer) is calling for a solidarity gathering at Old Main at 2pm on Friday the 18th. See the complete info in the prior post.

A discussion on possible recourse in the face of imminent cuts to graduate salaries and benefits is sensationalized by the Wildcat, which claims that graduate students are organizing a walk-out or strike, although neither is likely in the short term, and contrary to what the Wildcat says, was not supported by the council:

Solidarity Meeting

This was forwarded to us from a graduate student at U of A. We don't have time to edit it, so please ignore the question marks that always end up in the middle of e-mails for some reason or another:

"At the University of Arizona we are facing the most dramatic budget cuts andrestructuring in a generation. These cuts will affect everyaspect of the University system ? from the quality of education available tostudents, to the conditions of our labor as researchers, teachers, administrators and staff.

The administration is pursuing a strategy designed to weaken our capacity forcollective action, our ability to protect our interests and participate in thebudget and restructuring process.
In some departments, Graduate Teaching Assistants, already working for povertywages, have seen their salaries slashed. In others, course loads have beenexpanded overnight, with little explanation and no accountability. Facultyhave been furloughed in a way that minimizes disruption to teaching, andmaximizes the possibility that they will continue working without pay. Hiringfreezes and layoffs are undermining the integrity and functioning ofdepartments and spreading work around to already over-burdened faculty andstaff. And the decisions about whose budget is cut, by how much and why havebeen anything but transparent and accountable, let alone "participatory". All of this while new fees and "tuition surcharges" reduce access to andaffordability of higher education, redistributing the burden of budgetshortfalls onto the backs of students.

The UA budget has been cut as much as possible under the current stimulus?package. If it is cut any more, we will lose our stimulus funding. The 2011state budget will not include any stimulus money, and state? revenues arealready coming in under projection. We will have no protection from furtherdramatic cuts after this fiscal year.

By subjecting the budgetary restructuring to an arbitrary and subjective processwhose impact is felt differentially, we remain divided and pitted against eachother, rather than capable of uniting around our common interests. As long aswe remain separated in our individual colleges and departments we will have nopower or voice as our colleagues lose their jobs, as the conditions of ourlabor and the quality of our institution deteriorates, and as the legislatureand administration continue to pull the rug out from under our feet.

For these reasons, we invite graduate assistants, faculty and staff to a meetingon Friday September 18 at 2pm on the fountain in front of Old Main organize anaction in solidarity with the faculty, staff and students of the UC system."

Thursday, September 10, 2009

It's been a busy week

  • The Daily Wildcat announced that a faculty-run blog (UA Defender) is speaking out against the transformation process,
  • Pres. Shelton sent out a memo a few days later that could be interpreted as some kind of response to the criticism in said blog,
  • the state budget finally got at least partially figured out (meaning that UA employees will not have to be furloughed this year),
  • ASUA and GPSC began the process of 'bridgefication,'
  • ASUA finally voted to put their budget online (here's hoping they'll do the same with their meeting minutes),
  • and Regents Professor Oscar Martinez wrote in the AZ Star that 'poor leadership and funding are bringing down the UA.'
Sallygradstudent has now talked to several undergraduates that are taking the Mega-classes, many of whom did not feel that they had a choice since they were the only classes with open seats. The general consensus is that awesome as the teachers may be, Mega-classes suck. Please feel free to view our previous posting from this summer on the specifics of why they suck. Evan Lisull of the Desert Lamp defends the move to put more classes online, but we still have our doubts, and it's not because we're squares and don't want to deal with technology. While you can have a good experience in an online class, we think they're certainly not for everyone, or for every subject. The risks also abound. Consider the discovery that local magnet school K12 was found to be outsourcing its grading to India. One thing is certain: if more online courses are offered, they should be by the design of educators, not administrators.

While Pres. Shelton's memo from Sept. 9 seems like a partial response to the concerns of the UA Defender blog (although, of course, he doesn't make any reference to the blog in the memo), it again fails to address real issues raised by concerned faculty. As Prof. Martinez stated in the AZ Star, Shelton again positions Sciences and Humanities (and SBS and whatever falls into that category) as somehow opposed to each other. Shelton claims that COS (Sciences) has sustained heavy losses of faculty in the last year. Martinez refutes this with the number of faculty lost in the Humanities. It all comes down to a major difference in perspective: Shelton and Hay seem to value science more than other fields. It has to be protected because it brings in research dollars (but don't ask Shelton how much it costs the university to maintain those grants because we actually lose money on a lot of them.)

So it comes down to this: Yeah, classes like Agricultural Sciences teach students skills and do research that benefit the state as a whole...and English teaches them to read and write analytically so that they can actually be of use in the workplace! It's time to stop considering science and engineering as the only valuable colleges on this campus and start insisting that our "World-class" university actually include the world we live in.

Also, Sallygradstudent has decided that the only way for the transformation process to gain any credibility in our eyes is for the upper administration to take a voluntary pay cut. Sometimes the tough choices have to be made in one's own glass house.

Special thanks to the Desert Lamp blog for giving a shout-out to Sallygradstudent: "PS: Readers interested in the UA Defender should also check out Sally Gradstudent, who has done similar work for almost a year now from a graduate student’s perspective." We may not always agree with the Lamp, but that's half the fun of blogging, and if they weren't out there it would be a lot harder to keep track of the ASUA. And also thanks to the UA Defender for calling Sally Gradstudent "ferocious."

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Let the Circus Begin

The Desert Lamp criticizes the Daily Wildcat's reporting on the UA Defender blog, claiming that it is just a printing of the rumor and innuendo on the blog itself:

While this is partially true, the Wildcat article is not intended to support the blog, and if few sources are cited, it may be for the same reasons Renee Schaffer Horton lists on her blog: people are not willing to be quoted criticizing the administration.

Meanwhile, someone claiming to be Sallygradstudent has been posting comments to the UA Defender blog. While we support your right to post your opinions anonymously, we do not support your using our blog's name to lend you credibility. When actual Sallygradstudent authors post on UA Defender, the blogger emblem appears next to the name in orange. And, as always, feel free to e-mail us anything at all:

Back in Business

A sleepy summer couldn't kill off common sense or the outrage felt by some who have been subjected to the "transformation" process. For those of us still nervous about the AZ legislature's possible cuts (they are still trying to get their act together), the added perceived threat that any dissent could be punished by our own administration has maintained the culture of fear addressed last year in the Wildcat.

Following in the footsteps of Sallygradstudent (for, although we did not invent blogging, we did take this fight underground), UA professors have taken up the online fight. Apparently even tenure can't protect you from the steam-rolling that they allege has become common practice.

After criticizing the provost's decision-making on the 1,200 mega class, VP for Instruction, Juan Garcia, was demoted. He was the only professor to go on record about the blog and Sallygradstudent congratulates him on his bravery. Someone has to lead the charge! Now we will have to wait and watch if the administration attempts any censure. If so, it will be clear that the "culture of fear" is alive and well.

Read the blog here:

Even Tucson Citizen Blog reporter Renee Schaffer Horton has picked up the story:

UA Defender allows anonymous postings, and so do we. To post on Sallygradstudent, you can open a random gmail account without using your real name and send it to We will never reveal any personal information. We will not be intimidated.