Noeleen McIlvenna’s Remarks before the Wright State Board of Trustees, 13 September 2019

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The video starts somewhat after Noeleen had already begun her remarks; so if the opening seems confusing, the following note should clarify what she is describing:

Dr No asked the audience if they had watched the British Open this summer, and she explained it was played in her home town, Portrush, Northern Ireland. She mentioned all the promotional videos that NBC and Golf Channel showed over the four days of broadcast, highlighting all the beauty and attractions of the local area, even the Harbor Bar and its bartender . . . which is where the video starts.


AAUP-WSU Solidarity Scholarship–Nimisha H. Patel Activism Award

This scholarship is awarded annually to a Wright State Student who has demonstrated an exceptional commitment to community and/or campus activism in the spirit of social justice and inclusivity. Open to all continuing WSU undergraduate and graduate students who have at least one semester remaining before graduation and a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0. The scholarship award is $1,000 and may be awarded to more than one recipient. Deadline: Nov 22, 2019

Nimisha H. Patel Activism Award–Application Form

Nimisha Patel and Cake

Nimisha Patel Cake

Labor Day 2019

The following message is from the law firm of Susannah Muskovitz, the labor attorney who has represented our chapter since its inception:

Labor Day: Celebrating Our Continuing Fight

“137 years ago, our union brothers and sisters marched in the first ever Labor Day parade. On September 5, 1882 in New York City, 200 members of the Jewelers Union of Newark Two began to march with their band down Broadway. As they marched, spectators began to join, with 700 workers in line. The parade continued with the total number of marchers growing to thousands of men and women. A couple hours later, the marchers arrived at Reservoir Park where some marchers returned to work, while others continued the post-parade party. Unions that hadn’t participated in the parade showed up. Speeches were given, a picnic held, and there were “Lager beer kegs…mounted in every conceivable place.” For hours and into the evening nearly 25,000 union members and their families filled the park and celebrated the first Labor Day.

“As you know, 137 years later, our fight is as important as ever. However, this weekend, we celebrate the spirit of the labor movement and our collective, continued struggle. We hope you, your families, your friends, and your union brothers and sisters continue on this tradition and get a chance to celebrate your own work and the continued work of organized labor. On behalf of all of us here at M&L, we raise our glasses to all of you doing the underappreciated and often unseen work of improving the quality of life for working people.”

This past month, members of our chapter, including many in our chapter leadership, joined members of the Professionals Guild of Ohio in informational picketing after a judge had issued an order putting a stay on their planned strike. Our members were reciprocating for the support that we received from other unions in the Miami Valley region when we were on strike for three weeks earlier this year.

The last of the three photos features graduates of Wright State’s Social Work program who are now members of the Professionals Guild of Ohio. So, in a very real sense, our union’s activism continues to be student-centered.

Supporting Professionals Guild of Ohio 1

Supporting Professionals Guild of Ohio 2

Supporting Professionals Guild of Ohio 3--WSU SW Grads


Noeleen McIlvenna Receives Marilyn Sternberg Award from National AAUP

At the AAUP’s annual meeting in mid-June, Noeleen McIlvenna was honored as the 2019 recipient of the Marilyn Sternberg Award.

Noeleen's Sternberg Award

At the 1981 annual meeting of the American Association of University Professors, the AAUP’s Collective Bargaining Congress passed a resolution establishing the Marilyn Sternberg Award. The award, the resolution stated, is to be given annually to the “AAUP member who best demonstrates concern for human rights, courage, persistence, political foresight, imagination, and collective bargaining skills. Such award may be in the amount of $300, to be given to the individual or chapter or the special AAUP fund of the awardee’s choice.”

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The letter written by Marty Kich nominating Noeleen for the award includes these concluding paragraphs:

“Nonetheless, the most significant evidence of the impact of Noeleen’s efforts may not even be in the success of our strike. Our faculty have remained very engaged. An ad hoc committee that includes some members of our chapter leadership has been meeting to devise concrete strategies for building on the chapter solidarity and linkages with allied groups that were reinforced or created during the strike. Detailed plans are being drafted to organize other parts of our campus community and to turn the student support that we received into some sort of coordinated political activism on higher-ed issues. Likewise, a great deal of thought is going into how to remain engaged with other AAUP chapters, other labor unions, and other allied groups. Noeleen is running to succeed me as chapter president, and the slate of candidates for other offices on the ballot is the most diverse that we have ever had.

“In the end, just as our university’s financial crisis seemed suddenly to recede to being perceived as the backdrop to our extended strike, I think that the strike may end up being viewed as the backdrop to a resurgence of faculty labor activism both at our university and at other universities in Ohio. Again, Noeleen would be the first to tell you that no one person can possibly be responsible for such changes, but I think that it is every bit as true that such changes are often unimaginable without the contributions of certain individuals. Noeleen is just that sort of individual. And, perhaps most importantly, many of our students—in particular our female students—have recognized that Noeleen is just that sort of inspiring individual.”