Congratulations to the 2023 AAUP-Utica Scholarship Winners!

Thanks also to the 2023 AAUP-Utica Scholarship Committee members, Dan Tagliarina and Ari Gratch

About AAUP-Utica Scholarships

Two $1,000 scholarships are awarded annually at the AAUP-Utica spring luncheon. AAUP-Utica members are invited to nominate worthy Utica University students who:

  • Are in at least their second semester at Utica University, and
  • Have not yet completed their undergraduate degree, and
  • Need to complete at least 12 credits after the spring semester to earn their undergraduate degree, and
  • Have not already been awarded a scholarship by the AAUP-Utica.

While any nominee should have both an outstanding academic record and an interest in service to the community, the emphasis is different, with the Millett scholarship highlighting the academic and the Crisafulli highlighting service. A subcommittee of the governing board reviews the nominations and determines the winners of the scholarships.

The Virgil C. Crisafulli Scholarship is awarded each year to a student for demonstrated outstanding leadership in regard to at least one of the AAUP’s core values such as academic freedom, professional responsibility, civic service, humanitarian concern for others, and solidarity with those who share the common goals of equity and voice for all.

The Robert W. Millett Scholarship is awarded each year to a student for academic excellence reflecting the values of the AAUP: respect for open dialogue and the free exchange of ideas; the right to self-expression; integrity in scholarly endeavors; and support for academic freedom.

An Open Letter from the Governing Board


10+ months fighting for a fair contract, advocating for the needs of the full-time faculty, librarians, and HEOP counselors.

9.97% increase in inflation since August 2021.

89+ days working without a contract.

7.625% pay cut for full-time faculty, librarians, and HEOP counselors for fiscal year 2020-2021.

68% of 119 full-time faculty and librarians who participated in a survey last week said they would vote Yes on a strike authorization vote.

5 members in the university leadership (at least) are leaving the institution at the end of the semester.

4 outstanding information requests still remain from the AAUP-Utica asking the University to explain their financial position.

3 extraordinary faculty (at least) are leaving this institution to take other jobs.

2 talented students (at least) withdrew within the last few weeks from the University in order to transfer to other institutions because their major was cut by the Board of Trustees on February 16, 2023.

1 year after becoming a “University,” the Board of Trustees voted to cut 13 programs at the behest of President Laura Casamento.

This past year we’ve been given

0% respect and shared governance

0% justification and transparency

0% raise in salary

Our working conditions are our students’ learning conditions. We are worth more than this; our students are worth more than this. We are all worth more than 0%.

Leonore Fleming, President, AAUP Utica/AFT 6786

AAUP-Utica Governing Board Officers

Douglas Edwards, Vice President             

John Peter, Treasurer                                    

Jim Brown, Secretary                                     

Adam Pack, Immediate Past President         

Xiao Xiao, Immediate Past Treasurer            

Kirstin Walker, Grievance Officer                  

AAUP-Utica Governing Board Members At Large

Linnéa Franits

Ariel Gratch

Amy Lindsey 

Jeffrey Miller  

Deborah Pollack

Daniel Tagliarina

Spring Luncheon Business Meeting on Wednesday, May 10th

AAUP-Utica members, save the date for Wednesday, May 10th, 2023 for our annual Spring Luncheon Business Meeting!

An agenda will be sent out on May 3rd, and will include the main business item, which is discussing and voting on the budget. We will also announce the winners of this year’s AAUP-Utica Student Scholarships, and discuss many other things. 

You can attend the spring business meeting either in person or virtually (same as last year). Please RSVP to AAUP-Utica Secretary, Jim Brown by May 3rd if you plan to attend in person since lunch will be provided


WhereBurrstone Inn Executive Conference Room


Lunch will be served from 11:30am-12:30pm

The business portion of the meeting will start shortly after 12:30pm and is projected to run until 2pm

What The menu will be the Italian Lunch Buffet (same as last year). There will be a vegetarian option. 

If you have any questions and/or any dietary concerns or restrictions, please let us know.



WhenThe Webex meeting will open at 12:30pm, after the in-person lunch has completed and the business portion of the meeting is set to begin. 

AAUP-Utica Student Scholarship Nominations due May 1!

AAUP-Utica members, do you have an outstanding student who could benefit from a $1,000 scholarship? 💰

If so, consider nominating them for one of the two AAUP-Utica $1,000 student scholarships

1️⃣  The Virgil C. Crisafulli Scholarship is awarded each spring to a Utica University student for demonstrated outstanding leadership in regard to at least one of AAUP’s core values such as academic freedom, professional responsibility, civic service, humanitarian concern for others, and solidarity with those who share the common goals of equity and a voice for all.

2️⃣  The Robert W. Millett Scholarship is awarded each spring to a Utica University student for academic excellence reflecting the values of the AAUP: respect for open dialogue and the free exchange of ideas; the right to self-expression; integrity in scholarly endeavors; and support for academic freedom.

While any nominee should have both an outstanding academic record and an interest in service to the community, the emphasis for each award is different. The Millett scholarship highlights academics and the Crisafulli scholarship highlights service.


In order to be eligible for an AAUP-Utica scholarship, a Utica University student must:

  1. Be in at least their second semester at Utica University, and
  2. Have not yet completed their undergraduate degree, and
  3. Need to complete at least 12 credits after the current spring semester to earn their undergraduate degree, and
  4. Have not already been awarded a scholarship by the AAUP-Utica


AAUP-Utica members are invited to nominate worthy Utica University students for these scholarships. 

To nominate a student, please send the nominee’s name and a letter of recommendation to the AAUP-Utica Scholarship Committee:Dan Tagliarina and Ari Gratch no later than Monday, May 1, 2023Be sure to specify which scholarship you are nominating your student for.

⭐️ Scholarship winners will be announced at our Spring Business Meeting on Wednesday, May 10 ⭐️

Lastly, don’t forget that if you purchase any AAUP-Utica items from our store, a portion of each purchase goes towards the AAUP-Utica Student Scholarship Fund. There is also an option on the store website to make a gift to support the student scholarship fund without making a purchase. 

AAUP-Utica Files Demand for Arbitration

On Tuesday, March, 7, 2023, the AAUP-Utica’s lawyer filed a Demand for Arbitration per Step 4 of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (Article 16. Grievance Procedure). This demand for arbitration is an escalation of the Grievance that was filed on January 10 about the violation of shared governance as stipulated in the Collective Bargaining Agreement, specifically, the University’s refusal to follow the faculty senate bylaws and procedures, and the University’s refusal to involve the curriculum committee or follow the curriculum committee’s procedures or guidelines during the Fall 2022 Academic Program Portfolio Review recommendation process.

Rather than attempt to work with the AAUP-Utica or try to resolve the grievance in any of the three prior steps of the grievance process, the University instead delayed in responding to the union at each step and proceeded to present these recommendations to the Board of Trustees in mid-February despite the loud opposition from university constituents including faculty, staff, students, alumni, and larger Utica-Rome community members.

The Board of Trustees voted on the recommendations in mid-February without even acknowledging the fact that there is an ongoing grievance objecting to the manner in which the entire process was handled.

A national arbitrator will now investigate the entire Academic Program Portfolio Review Process and it’s legitimacy in terms of whether or not it comports with the Collective Bargaining Agreement.

On Wednesday, March 8, 2023, the AAUP-Utica was provided a case number by the American Arbitration Association (AAA). The AAUP-Utica and the University now have until March 20, 2023, to respond to the AAA with their arbitrator preferences. 

Arbitrations typically take a few months in order to thoroughly investigate and acquire all necessary documentation, as well as find a time that all parties are available to meet for arbitration.

This is a developing story and more updates will follow.

Rally to Save Utica! Video Summary and News Round Up

Click the Facebook Post Above or Click Here to Watch the Save Utica! Rally Summary Video.

We also have livestream footage of the entire four-hour event on our Instagram: @aauputica, and The Tangerine did a great job documenting the event and recording the individual speeches as well. You can watch their videos from the event on their Instagram using the links below: 

Finally, make sure to check out the great news coverage of the event by clicking the pictures below: 

Or click the links directly:

Your Weingarten Rights Turned 48 Today!!!

Forty-eight years ago, on Feb. 19, 1975, the Supreme Court ruled that an employee has the right to request union representation in any meeting that she or he feels could result in discipline or termination.

You Are Being Asked Questions That Might Lead To Disciplinary Action: What Do You Do?

If you believe that discipline will result from a meeting with management/administration (in legalese, “an investigatory interview”), you can insist that a union representative be present during this interview. This is part of your “Weingarten Rights,” which references the 1975 United States Supreme Court case NLRB vs. Weingarten. Weingarten Rights apply only to members of a collective bargaining unit and are among the many benefits of having a union.

When an investigatory interview occurs, the following rules apply:

Rule 1) – You must make a clear request for effective union representation before or during the interview. Often an employee may not know at the outset that a meeting with management could lead to discipline. If such a meeting is or becomes an “investigatory interview,” you should assert your right to have a union officer of your choosing present. You cannot be punished for making this request. (Note: If the union representative of your choice is not available in a reasonable time period, it may be necessary for an alternative union officer to represent you.)

A typical Weingarten request would be: “If this discussion could in any way lead to my being disciplined or terminated, or affect my personal working conditions, I respectfully request that my union representative be present at this meeting. Until my union representative arrives, I choose not to participate in this discussion.” Or you may simply say, “I want my union representative here.”

Rule 2) – After you make this request, the interviewer has three options:

a. Grant the request and delay the interview until your union representative arrives and has a chance to consult privately with you. (Note: The right to representation is the right to effective representation, which translates in this rule as the right to consult privately with the representative before the interview. The union representative should also know what the meeting is about ahead of time so that he/she can effectively advise you.)

b. Deny the request and end the interview immediately; or

c. Give you a choice of: (I) having the interview continue without representation or (II) ending the interview. (Note: It is not wise to choose the first option.)

Rule 3) – If the interviewer denies your request and continues to ask questions, this is an unfair labor practice. You have the right not to answer any questions until you have union representation. You cannot be disciplined for refusing to answer the questions, but you are required to sit there until the supervisor terminates the interview. Leaving before this happens may constitute punishable insubordination in some cases.

The AAUP-Utica represents all members of the bargaining unit, both those who pay dues and those who do not, and is obligated to come to your aid without prejudice. If you are summoned to a meeting with a member of administration and discover that it is an “investigatory interview,” assert your right to have a union representative present.

Download a printable PDF of this information here

Rally To Save Utica! This Friday During Utica University Board of Trustees Meetings

Come Out To Support Utica University Faculty, Students, Staff, and Alumni!

The Utica University Board of Trustees will be on campus this coming Friday, Feb. 17 and will be voting on whether or not to eliminate majors in Chemistry, Physics (BA), Geoscience, Philosophy, Spanish, International Studies, Therapeutic Recreation, Healthcare Management, Nutrition, Sociology & Anthropology, and more. As well as voting to modify English, History, Math, Political Science, Accounting, and others.

Please consider joining our Rally to Save Utica on Friday morning (stop by any time between 8:30am-12:30pm) to support the Utica University Faculty, Students, Staff and Alumni and help us make our voices heard!

This event is open to anyone and everyone. It’s a chance for faculty, students, staff, alumni and community members to come together and support one another.

Schedule of speakers and events will be released as soon as available.

Location Information:
*Directions to Duffy Plaza (outside Boehlert Hall) at Utica University*

Sign up for updates and RSVP

RSVP to the Facebook Event here:

Learn more at

Email: with any questions

Follow @aauputica on Instagram to watch the Livestream

AAUP-Utica President, Vice President, and numerous faculty and librarians deliver petition and letters condemning proposed cuts to University President and Board of Trustees

February 9, 2023, 4:00PM, Office of the President at Utica University:

AAUP Utica/AFT 6786 President Leonore Fleming and Vice President Douglas Edwards, accompanied by a number of Utica University Faculty and Librarians, deliver the Save Utica! Stop the Cuts!” Petition, that had gathered over 1302 signatures at the time of delivery. Nine letters from local, regional, and national associations were also delivered to Anthony M. Villanti, Special Assistant to the President and Secretary to the Board of Trustees.

“As president of the AAUP-Utica, I beg the Utica University President and the Board of Trustees to read these documents, to listen to these diverse voices, and think critically about the points that are being raised. We ask not just to be heard, but to be provided answers.”

– AAUP-Utica President Leonore Fleming

“The administration and the board have bypassed clearly established curricular processes in the union’s collective bargaining agreement, the Faculty Senate Bylaws, and established Curriculum Committee procedures, announcing on January 18, 2023 the proposed elimination of 15 majors and significant and mandatory modifications of eight others.”

– New York State Conference of the AAUP

Letters in the delivery to the University President and Board of Trustees Include (click the links to read the letters in their entirety):

The Utica University Faculty, Librarians and Students are so thankful for the support from the 1300+ people who signed the “Save Utica! Stop the Cuts!” petition as well as the support from the nine organizations who wrote and sent in letters.

“Utica University describes itself as an institution that provides ‘outstanding educational pathways’ and values ‘Intellectual growth, creativity, and scholarship in the pursuit of knowledge… Freedom of expression and civil discourse… [and] Ethical behavior and integrity.’ It would be difficult to argue that Utica University is living up to these values or fulfilling its commitment to a comprehensive liberal arts education were it to eliminate its philosophy major.”

– American Philosophical Association