To the Editor:

I am striking my teaching this week because it is way past time for this university to recognize me and my union. Yale needs to enter into a real dialogue with the graduate students and teachers here about the work we do every day. The creative fiction that our teaching and grading is not work not only disrespects us and our disciplines, but it calls into question the core mission of this University. Lectur es open new vistas to students, but it is in our sections where they learn how to read critically, how to develop strong arguments, and how to write. These are critical skills for undergraduates to learn because they will use them in whatever careers they choose. The responsibility in helping them develop these skills is entrusted to graduate teachers because we have already mastered them. Indeed, we do not begin to teach prior to earning at least a Master of Arts degree. Learning never ends and I do not argue that teaching is not also a learning experience. However, what I learn on the job does not negate the fact that my teaching is, in fact, a job.

Melissa Stuckey GRD ’06

April 18, 2005