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Letter to the Editor: WSU Right to Strike

WSU Campus. Photograph: Soham Parikh/The Guardian

By Matt Raska

The impending strike of Wright State professors brings to mind the typical process for prospective visiting students: some trivia, an outline of fun activities, a tour around campus.

In the past few years, Wright State has obtained several shiny new jewels: a Student Success Center, a neuroscience building, the Wright State physicians building, the TV building (thank you Tom Hanks!), an extension to the Creative Arts Center and an aborted presidential debate.

Tours next week will have an uncomfortable additional component added to the itinerary: an explanation of why the teachers – the heart, soul, and brains of the campus – are going to be furloughed, their pay cut, and benefits curtailed.

I imagine the explanation will follow the line of “your tens of thousands of dollars of tuition are for the buildings and beautification of campus, not lessons or teachers. Wright State values a learning themed experience, rather than learning itself. Hence, our scholars will be cast aside.”

I’m reminded of the 2015 death of Robert Morin, a librarian at the University of New Hampshire. Mr. Morin died at the age of 77 after saving for decades. He bequeathed an impressive four million dollars to the University of New Hampshire who promptly spent one million dollars on a stadium scoreboard and one hundred thousand on the library that Mr. Morin dedicated his life to.

The dedication of the faculty of Wright State is being treated just as callously as Mr. Morin’s bequeath.

Institutions are designed to give continuity to mortal endeavors. Institutions are living organizations composed of many individuals, without which the institutions collapse.

Poor financial planning has Wright State considering killing itself as an institution of learning in favor of a beautiful, empty campus.

P.S. to the scabs that Wright State is considering: you deserve neither esteem nor self-respect. You are selling out your peers for thirty pieces of silver.

Matthew Raska is a former student at Wright State, who graduated in 2016 with a Masters in Engineering.

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