While administrators in the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences were allotting financial aid funds to departments on the basis of the newly-instituted Kraus program, the steering committee for the Graduate Student and Teaching Fellow Union began to implement plans for its strike protest against the program.
Graduate students from most departments in the GSAS met Wednesday night to tally results of the union membership drive which began the previous Wednesday. They encountered discouraging news.
Fewer than 225 students had signed the Union pledge by Wednesday -- almost 300 members away from the enrollment that is necessary before the strike takes effect. Graduate students voted two weeks ago that if 500 students have joined the Union by Monday night, the Union will go on strike against the University until its demands are recognized.
In evaluating the lag in Union enrollment, committee members concluded that most students who hesitated to sign pledges would observe the strike once it began.
With less than a week remaining until the scheduled walkout, steering committee members decided to launch a momentum-building membership drive to build interest among all members of the community.
The steering committee planned five projects for the next week, including a Union demonstration before Tuesday's Faculty meeting. Three groups will organize stronger recruiting measures for the Union, while another will try to recruit undergraduate support for the strike and the Union demands.
Meanwhile, back at the dean's office, Edward T. Wilcox, acting dean of the GSAS, said last week that "It's impossible to make any major revisions," in the Kraus plan. He added that the Union had not yet formally presented the demands to him.
The steering committee will reconvene on Monday night to tally the final results of their campaign. Providing that Union membership has reached its 500-mark, GSAS administrators will immediately receive student demands, bargaining for a revised financial aid plan will begin, and the Union will officially go on strike against the University.
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