THE Senate, the highest academic governing body at the University of Aberdeen, has voted overwhelmingly to put an end to the consultation process on modern language programs. Comprising senior management, academic staff, and elected student officers, the Senate recommended an immediate cessation of the consultation on the School of Language, Literature, Music, and Visual Culture (LLMVC).
The initial motion, affirming Senate’s authority in the matter, passed with an impressive majority of 87 votes in favor and 3 against. Following swiftly, a second motion calling for the pause of the consultation to facilitate meaningful discussions secured a majority vote of 78 to 15.
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Rhiannon Ledwell, Vice President for Education at the Students’ Union, expressed the significance of this resounding vote. Ledwell stated, “This decisive vote shows the undeniable support to stop the consultation, save staff jobs and preserve language degrees among its academic staff and students, not just within the language school, but throughout the university as a whole.”
The motion now moves to the University Court, which is scheduled to convene on Tuesday. Ledwell emphasised that the Court has a responsibility to uphold the will of students and staff and put an end to the consultation on modern languages. The call is for a pause, allowing time for meaningful discussions to occur.
Ledwell further added, “To let this rushed, knee-jerk consultation continue over the holiday period would be cruel and entirely unnecessary, and subjecting our hardworking languages staff to this uncertainty right before Christmas is unfathomable. Court must uphold the will of Senate and ensure the consultation is not allowed to continue unchecked, and that the university comes back to the table and consults both staff and students in a meaningful way before any more irreparable damage is done.”
In collaboration with the University and College Union (UCU), the Students’ Union plans to host a rally on Monday, December 11, at 6 pm at New King’s on campus. The rally aims to petition the Court to honor the Senate’s vote and halt the language consultation. For more information on how to get involved, visit www.ausa.org.uk. The university community anticipates a positive response from the Court to safeguard the future of language programs and staff positions.