An MIT-quality labor agreement
Collective bargaining between MIT’s graduate student workers and administration is about to officially begin. Unfortunately, both sides are already off to a disappointing start. The administration and union organizers have been too focused on rhetoric and not enough on honesty.
Our facilities workers deserve a fair contract now, not a pay cut
MIT's administration continues to chase profits rather than devoting its immense resources to supporting the well-being of the people that keep MIT functioning. But workers are fighting back.
Do members run this union?
The union has recently announced internally that bargaining will, in fact, be closed to all graduate students, save for members of the Bargaining Committee and a handful of graduate students.
MIT can address this elephant in the room: Bad periods!
We are writing to share a “secret” about our lives as women faculty members at MIT. First, the not-so-secret part. As members of the informal “Happy Women at MIT” club, with a collective 50 years absorbing, contributing to, and reveling in the “Mens et Manus” mindset, the infusion of new students each fall reminds us that we have the best jobs in the world. Like so many of our colleagues at MIT, we grew up in working-class families, attended neighborhood high schools, and blissfully absorbed the power of math, science, and analytical thinking. We somehow ended up in top-tier graduate programs, a dream, and then as faculty at MIT, the quintessential home for nerdy (and outspoken) problem solvers.
MIT’s attempts to reduce risk also stifles exploration and opportunity
While at MIT, one of my favorite activities was to walk around campus, often late at night, just to see what there was. But showing an ID, dealing with limited access, and going through security checks have all become the norm. Not being allowed to explore is now the routine.
MIT and local input needed on open-campus reversal
One benefit the Institute gave to the city and other local communities was access to the central portion of campus — an inspiration for local young people and an educational resource for many. If this access is removed, then we have ourselves an ivory tower.
Defense tech: social impact ... or just warheads on foreheads?
The perception of defense tech as warheads on foreheads is not inaccurate. However, it is neither holistic nor disqualifying from the label of social impact.
Welcome back to Fortress MIT
Just when it seems possible that we may be returning to some semblance of pre-pandemic life, the installation of new scanners to replace the "temporary" gates at the main entrance of Building 7 signals a chilling new normal: Fortress MIT.
Seif Fateen: An MIT-educated professor languishing in Egypt’s prisons
While Seif Fateen is only one man caught in the web of a sprawling complex of prisons, his torment epitomizes the scourge of ruthless repression that countless Egyptians have had to suffer since the July 2013 coup.
Expanding our horizons through nuclear energy and space exploration
Whether you’re religious or atheist, looking at the sun, moon, stars, and beyond gives you a sense of power and intimacy with nature itself.
SFS took my “family’s financial circumstances” into account, but their broad definition of family included a woman who is more of an angry ghost than a functioning parent. I’m sure it didn’t hurt that this choice was better for the university’s bottom line.
On civility: in search of the path forward
I write today to share some personal reflections and concerns about the way our community is currently interacting.
Facts about the safety and security of nuclear power plants in Ukraine
The war in Ukraine is heart-breaking. Combining the words “war” and “nuclear” adds fear and raises a host of questions amid uncertainty and sadness. Ukraine is a country that derives over half of its electricity from nuclear energy and has 15 reactors generating electricity. Ukraine is also the location of the decommissioned Chernobyl power plant, which was the site of the worst nuclear accident in history. [Here is a video about what happened at Chernobyl, by Prof. Mike Short, as taught in 22.01 (Introduction to Nuclear Engineering and Ionizing Radiation), Fall 2016: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ijst4g5KFN0.]
An open letter on graduate student unionization
If MIT and its students are opponents, then how do we continue to be full-on collaborators?
We have genuine love, strength in numbers, and unity on our side
Reaching this point has taken a lot of hard work, and MIT’s administrators haven’t made it easy.
An open letter on why UE and what it stands for cannot represent MIT graduate students
A vote no is not a vote against unionization in general but merely against our unionizing with UE.
Recommendations towards a better MIT for Asian Americans
We still do not have enough culturally competent mental health professionals, representation within faculty, staff, and senior-level administration, or a physical community space.
Harvard Graduate Student Union solidarity statement: vote yes to MIT graduate student unionization
Before our contract, student workers often knew little of what was expected of them, even regarding their basic hours and responsibilities.
The risks and costs of unionization
On April 4 and 5, many of MIT’s graduate students will participate in a confidential election to decide whether the United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers of America (UE) will represent them for collective bargaining.
An open letter on the closing of the MIT Pharmacy
What will be the next convenience, perk, benefit, or job to be abruptly ended?