UC President Threatens to Fire Striking UC Santa Cruz Grad Students

NBC Bay Area

University of California President Janet Napolitano has threatened to fire a group of UC Santa Cruz graduate students who have been on strike and withholding students' grades over better pay, according to a report from KSBW.

The wildcat strike was entering its second week Tuesday, and Napolitano issued an ultimatum, saying the grad students must release grades by Friday or lose their jobs, the TV station reported.

Napolitano has condemned the ongoing strike, saying in a letter to students, faculty and staff that the "unauthorized" strike violates their existing collective bargaining agreement.

Initially, about 12,000 students did not receive grades, but as of Tuesday, 90% of the grades have been submitted, KSBW reported. The university said that still leaves many students without grades.

The teaching assistants are demanding a more than $1,400 a month increase because they say housing costs in the areas surrounding the campus are so high, the TV station reported.

The administration offered two financial assistance programs to help with the high cost of housing, but both were rejected by the grad students. Picketing was expected to continue Tuesday.

The striking students plan to hold a news conference Wednesday morning.

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