PSC Pres. Barbara Bowen sent this letter to CUNY Board of Trustees Chair Benno Schmidt on Fri., June 21. The letter calls on Chairman Schmidt to respect the full-time faculty’s 92% vote of No Confidence in Pathways and rescind the resolution that established the program. “A curriculum that has so dramatically failed to win the confidence of those responsible for executing it cannot be in the best interest of the University,” she says in the letter. The overwhelming result of the No Confidence vote demands that “Pathways be removed from its position as CUNY’s general education curriculum and replaced by a curriculum or curricula formulated by elected faculty bodies,” according to Pres. Bowen. Members of the CUNY Board of Trustees received a similar letter, which was copied to Chancellor Matthew Goldstein and Interim Chancellor William Kelly.
June 21, 2013
Dr. Benno Schmidt
Chairperson, Board of Trustees
The City University of New York
205 East 42nd Street
New York, NY 10017
Dear Chairperson Schmidt:
I am writing to call on you, as Chairperson of the Board of Trustees, to take the
necessary actions to rescind the June 27, 2011 resolution, “Creating an Efficient
Transfer System.” In a vote counted on May 31, the full-time faculty of CUNY, by a
margin of 92%, voted No Confidence in the curriculum the resolution produced.
Nearly four thousand full-time faculty—an absolute majority—voted No Confidence in
Pathways. As president of the Professional Staff Congress, which has voted repeatedly
to reject Pathways, I ask you to respect the vote of No Confidence and rescind the
A vote of No Confidence, as you know, is not merely a statement of opposition. It is a
demand that the subject of the vote be removed from a position of power and replaced
by an alternative. Our demand is that Pathways be removed from its position as
CUNY’s general education curriculum and replaced by a curriculum or curricula
formulated by elected faculty bodies. The elected faculty bodies stand ready to work
expeditiously on the important issue of student transfer, and recognize the complexity
of doing so when implementation of Pathways has already begun.
The No Confidence vote was conducted by secret ballot among the 7202 full-time
faculty at CUNY from May 9 to May 31. The result, tabulated by the American
Arbitration Association at a vote-count open to observers, was as follows: 4322 voters,
or 60% of the total, cast ballots; 3996, more than 92%, agreed with a statement of No
Confidence in Pathways; and only 323, or 7%, disagreed (3 ballots were void).
There is now no question as to whether Pathways has the support of the faculty: an
absolute majority has voted No Confidence. A curriculum that has so dramatically
failed to win the confidence of those responsible for executing it cannot be in the best
interest of the University. I call on you to protect the interests of the University and the
future of its students by acting on the vote and initiating a repeal of the June 2011
This is the first time in the history of the University, as far as we can determine, that the faculty has voted No Confidence in the University’s entire general education curriculum. It is a moment to listen to the faculty of whom the CUNY administration is justly proud and resolve the public crisis of confidence in CUNY. We call on you to do so immediately.
President, Professional Staff Congress/CUNY
cc: Dr. Matthew Goldstein, Chancellor, The City University of New York
Dr. William P. Kelly, President, CUNY Graduate Center
Faculty and Professional Staff, CUNY