U of O Watch mission, in the words of Foucault...

"One knows … that the university and in a general way, all teaching systems, which appear simply to disseminate knowledge, are made to maintain a certain social class in power; and to exclude the instruments of power of another social class. … It seems to me that the real political task in a society such as ours is to criticise the workings of institutions, which appear to be both neutral and independent; to criticise and attack them in such a manner that the political violence which has always exercised itself obscurely through them will be unmasked, so that one can fight against them." -- Foucault, debating Chomsky, 1971.

U of O Watch mission, in the words of Socrates...

"An education obtained with money is worse than no education at all." -- Socrates

video of president allan rock at work

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Marie Josée Berger most ruthless administrator at U of O, student union says

[Photo (uOttawa.ca) : dean Marie Josée Berger]

The Student Appeal Centre (SAC) of the Student Federation of the University of Ottawa (SFUO) has named the dean of the Faculty of Education, Marie Josée Berger, as the first recipient of its newly inaugurated annual "Iron Fist Award".

The SAC has announced the prize on its blog where its report reads in part (LINK):

The Iron Fist is awarded to the University of Ottawa Administrator having caught Student Appeal Officers’ attention for being most ruthless and/or unjust while showing little or no respect for students. The Award considers both long-term career contributions and particularly notable specific events.

In this case, Marie Josée Berger is well deserving of the Award, having been the object of several informal complaints at the Student Appeal Centre over many years.

For the 2010-2011 school year highlights include Marie Josée Berger’s refusal to respond and investigate at least three very serious complaints filed with her office, calling a student to her office only to belittle her after the case was already resolved in favour of the student, and threatening to impede her own graduate student’s progress in the program when the student expressed her desire to change supervisors.

Past conflicts involving Berger have included harsh unjustified discipline and dismissals against several academic staff members of the Faculty of Education.

At one point an anonymous letter from several professors published in a student newspaper accused Berger of ruling the Faculty of Education in "Tonton Macoute" style. Berger threatened to sue the student paper and went on a rampage against several professors.

The notorious reputation of Berger's Faculty of Education is at least campus wide.

Characteristically, in 2009 the university's Allan Rock administration named Berger a "Celebrat[ed] extraordinary woman at the University of Ottawa".

Youtube video with Berger (and Allan Rock in the monarchy of Morocco) on the topic of dialogue:



In the video, Berger explains that she is also interested in buying gold at a good price and that she is thankful for the advice she received in this regard.

4 comments:

Steve E. Noble said...

Having been a replacement professor at the University of Ottawa's Faculty of Education from 2008-2010 before being questionably "let go" (despite having very high student evaluations throughout my tenure) I can attest that it's not only students who have significant complaints with Marie, but faculty members past and present do as well. Being paid below the rank of lecturer, while possessing a doctorate, is just one of several unethical issues that I've encountered with her.

Dr. Steven E. Noble
Former Schooling and Society Prof

Steve E. Noble said...

I'd like to list some of the other issues I've faced with Mdme berger, as I feel I've experienced them:

-arbitrary cutting one month's salary (was given a small contract that covered less than half the missing the month's salary, but didn't receive the other money.

-for the term of my tenure was paid at or below the rank of lecturer when I should have been paid as an assistant professor

- arbitrary cut in salary

- Faculty average teaching load is 5 courses per academic year but I was required to teach a minimum of 8 courses per year and was "encouraged" to teach a ninth course in two years (thankfully that one course was in overload)

-shifted my position from Replacement Prof (teaching position) to Visiting Prof (non-teaching) - yet my teaching load remained the same

- negotiated a contract that was sent to central admin for signing and then "poof" she reneged on the contract when I filed my grievance

- as soon as I filed my grievance for having my salary cut and benefits removed even though I was teaching the same load, my office was locked, my mailbox was locked and profs were told not to be in communication with me. I was also told by a senior faculty member that once a faculty member files a grievance "you're out".

During my grievance meeting there were several unsubstantiated statements and outright lies made by berger (I have the emails and documents to refute these)

Let's just say for my troubles in the grievance, the settlement was sizeable.

The experience of berger was oen of the most abusive and exploitive employment relationships I've reached out to a former Dean of Education to talk about what I've experienced.

Denis Rancourt said...

Dear Dr. Steve E. Noble,

UofOWatch has a fair-reporting duty to verify what it publishes and the sources.

Please therefore contact the editor of UofOWatch using the email provided in the blogger profile.

Thank you. And thank you for contributing your information to the blog.

Dr. Berger was asked to provide any correction or comments for posting but chose to not respond.

Denis Rancourt said...

I can maybe most easily be reached at this email: claude.cde@gmail.com