Volume 92, Issue 86

Thursday, March 11, 1999


Editorial Board 1998-99

Setting a bad example

Editorial Cartoon

Setting a bad example

With the unending talk about the apathetic nature of university students, the University of Western Ontario's Faculty Association may have demonstrated we never stop learning from our professors.

Yesterday the University of Western Ontario Faculty Association released the survey results of how faculty rate the job performance of VP-academic Greg Moran, whose contract is currently up for review. The UWOFA's intention was to gauge how their members felt so they could communicate this to the VP-academic's selection committee.

But even by students' standards, faculty participation in this survey was pathetic. Out of approximately 854 eligible faculty voters, only 86 people deemed the survey to be important enough to take the five minutes necessary to respond.

While abysmally low student turnout rate for recent rallies and the University Students' Council presidential election is nothing for students to be proud of, one would expect a better example to be set by the people who are molding the minds of tomorrow's leaders. When faculty members demonstrate such blatant acts of apathy, it is truly disturbing.

Granted the UWOFA was rushed to get the survey out, there is no excuse for this collective demonstration of indifference on the part of the faculty. Members of the UWOFA had up to 10 days to complete the eight question survey. Furthermore, considering the importance of the relationship between the VP-academic and the faculty, one would expect Western's faculty to pay greater attention to this issue.

If the UWOFA were hoping to use the results of this survey to send a strong message to the VP-academic selection committee, then they failed. Even though the majority of the responses gave Moran an overwhelmingly unsatisfactory rating, the low response rate could suggest the faculty who did respond saw this merely as an opportunity to complain. Or perhaps, as the limited data suggests, the faculty truly are united in an utter disdain for Moran's performance thus far.

Unfortunately, the selection committee will never know for sure. The results of this survey are striking, but inconclusive. With a minimum amount of effort, the faculty could have sent the committee a united message which would have influenced a decision which will directly effect their jobs.

Instead, the committee was sent an incomplete jigsaw puzzle with the majority of the pieces missing.

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Copyright The Gazette 1999