Professors take to cyberspace to inform Ontario voters



    TORONTO, Sept. 25 /CNW/ - The Ontario Confederation of University Faculty
Associations has launched a campaign to urge candidates running in the
provincial election to commit to creating the quality university experience
students need. For the first time, OCUFA will be using electronic advocacy as
part of its election efforts.
    Ontario ranks last in Canada in per capita funding of universities. As a
result, the quality of university education in Ontario is in jeopardy, OCUFA
warns, just as the province's economy needs "the best and the brightest" the
most.
    To ensure a quality education for our students, OCUFA is urging
candidates to commit to raising Ontario's support for universities to the
national average.
    Ontario's student-faculty ratio, a key indicator of quality, has soared
in the last decade, from 18 students per professor in the 1990s to 27 students
per professor today, meaning less time with professors, larger classes, and
fewer course offerings. OCUFA is asking voters to support an additional
$1.6 billion in annual funding to universities.
    "That means an additional $125 per person a year in operating and capital
investment, less than an iPod Nano," said OCUFA's president, Professor Brian
E. Brown. "But the return on that investment to students, and to our economy,
is incalculable."
    "Economic strength cannot happen without a well-educated workforce. We
only need to look at the economic strength that its universities have given
the Kitchener-Waterloo region," he said.
    "We are urging candidates to commit to supporting the quality university
experience students, and Ontario, need to succeed," he said.
    OCUFA's campaign website, iwanttogotouniversity.com, has an interactive
component allowing voters to send e-messages to candidates urging them to
commit to more government support for Ontario universities, which are
staggering under years of under-funding.
    In addition to the election website and electronic advocacy, the OCUFA
campaign will include the release of several research papers documenting the
effects of chronic under-funding, lobbying of candidates by individual local
faculty association, and election outreach to the 15,000 professors and
academic librarians whom OCUFA represents.




For further information:

For further information: Henry Mandelbaum, Executive Director, (416)
979-2117, Ext. 229, hmandelbaum@ocufa.on.ca, or Mark Rosenfeld, Associate
Executive Director, (416) 979-2117, Ext. 233, mrosenfeld@ocufa.on.ca

Organization Profile

Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations

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Ontario Elections 2011

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