Dr. Felicia Kornbluh, a professor of history at the University of Vermont and the director of its Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies program, explains what is really at stake in the contract negotiations which have reached an impasse between United Academics and the UVM administration. The most significant points of disagreement are philosophical and moral, going beyond fair salaries and benefits. What is the purpose of the university? How best can it help students develop critical thinking skills? How can UVM serve as a model of a workplace that really works – a humane and welcoming environment for students, staff members, faculty, and community members? United Academics is also standing with the nonunionized university staff who received an inadequate compensation package.