Hundreds of Portland State University professors and students took to the campus park blocks Thursday to push the administration toward a deal in faculty contract talks.
Students held signs in support of faculty members, many of them wearing their graduation caps and gowns.
Faculty and administrators are officially at impasse meaning a strike vote is possible, in a little over a month.
One of the big sticking points relates to non-tenured teachers who are on year-to-year contracts.
Sam Gioia is one of them. “Under the administration’s proposal, between adjunct faculty and non-tenure-track faculty - that’s two-thirds of PSU’s faculty - will never have a contract for the following year,” Gioia said.
The faculty union is also prioritizing pay raises for professors, and maintaining the union’s role in PSU policy making.
Students say they want the priority to be investing in the classroom.
Administrators expressed their support for students’ right to protest in a safe manner.
University officials aren’t publicly discussing proposals.