DAY HALL – In response to a major push at Cornell toward forming the first graduate student union in the school’s history, Interim President Hunter Rawlings III sent an email out earlier today warning the university that unionizing would offer Masters and PhD students a brief glimmer of hope and happiness unseen since beginning their degree program.
“By promising joy and bargaining power to a group of students who have become accustomed to the unfair and occasionally unbearable lifestyle of being a TA or Research Assistant, a graduate union could be very dangerous to both graduate students and the rest of Cornell, ” said the President in his email, including that cheerful grad students might give undergraduates the wrong impression about what a higher degree program should be like.
“We are not in the business of filling our younger students’ heads with the idea that a graduate program is an enjoyable and fair experience; that’s simply preposterous. Instead, we pride ourselves on the countless hours of free labor in addition to normal graduate responsibilities we wring out of those sad, sad grad students. What are we going to do, treat them like employees? That sounds expensive.”
Rawlings concluded his email affirming that a vote against the union was the best outcome, citing that if grad students wanted to be happy, they would not have gone to grad school in the first place.