We are Workers: What it means to be a worker at MRU

As faculty, we all love our work. As professors and scholars, we generally consider ourselves incredibly privileged to be able to teach, read and write for a living. But even as we (mostly) enjoy it, the work we do is highly skilled, difficult, demanding, and often incredibly stressful. And like any other person in any other job, we wouldn’t do it without remuneration, which is how you know that MRU faculty are workers. We are labourers in an increasingly corporatized workplace in which the politics and processes of academic capitalism are paramount. 

This trend towards academic capitalism means that :

  • corporate-style top-down management processes gradually overwhelm bicameral collegial governance,
  • administration bloats to support this increase in managerial processes,
  • increased government focus on the “economic function of universities as drivers of workforce renewal and industrial competitiveness,” which leads
  • “’conditional’ funding initiatives […] to make universities more responsive to markets and the needs of the economy.”

Faculty and Administration at MRU are bound by a Collective Agreement, which outlines our responsibilities to our employer (the University), and our employer’s responsibilities to us. It is, as its title suggests, collectively negotiated between the MRFA and MRU’s Board of Governors. The process of collective bargaining is outlined in the MRFA’s Collective Bargaining Index.