*** For Immediate Release ***
Toronto, Feb. 28
What: University of Toronto General Assembly
When: Tuesday, March 1st, 2011-02-28
Where: Ontario Institute for Studies in Education, auditorium, 252 Bloor St W
Following a packed first meeting on January 19th, the newly formed University of Toronto General Assembly will convene tomorrow, March 1st, to continue working toward more democratic and accountable university governance. Hundreds of students, faculty, workers, and community members will gather to voice opposition to the top-down, undemocratic, and corporate decision-making structures that currently characterize governance at the University of Toronto and universities across the country. Open to all members of the community, the participants of the General Assembly share equal voice and vote.
According to organizers, the Assembly envisions itself as a nexus that connects members of the University community who, for various reasons, have had negative experiences with its governance. Its members wish to advocate for, and create, alternative administrative structures. “Workers, faculty members, and students are systematically excluded from structures of governance at the University,” says Assembly organizer, Jessica Denyer. “We are meeting at the General Assembly to express our non-confidence in these structures. The Assembly will act as a site for political action and a tool to replace them with more equitable alternatives.”
The General Assembly seeks to safeguard the public mandate of the University. “There are increasingly fewer means for the public to hold the University of Toronto accountable.” Johanna Lewis, a student from the department of Global Health, continues: “At UofT, decisions are becoming increasingly opaque. Its administrators are more invested in consulting with ‘captains of industry’ than promoting the wellbeing of all of its members and of society at large.”
Participants of the General Assembly seek a university that is organized and operated by those who make it what it is. Together, they plan to map out an alternative direction for the institution and its administration.
To find out more about the University of Toronto General Assembly, please attend its second meeting this Tuesday, March 1st, from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. in the auditorium of the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto (252 Bloor Street W.).
For further information, contact:
Ryan Culpepper, (416) 880-4293
Jessica Denyer, (416) 708-3195
Johanna Lewis, (416) 797-8537.