Contingent appointments now account for over 70 percent of all instructional staff appointments in American higher education. The term “contingent faculty” includes both part- and full-time non-tenure-track faculty and graduate employees. The common link? Colleges and universities make little commitment to or investment in faculty in such positions, choosing instead to treat them as an expendable and temporary workforce, even faculty who have worked for decades at the same institution.
As Campus Equity Week kicks off, help shine a light on the increasingly precarious nature of academic work in our higher education system.
Many people don’t know that
- A large number of faculty in so-called “part-time” positions actually teach the equivalent of a full-time course load, often commuting between institutions and preparing courses on a grueling timetable, making enormous sacrifices to maintain interaction with their students.
- Since faculty classified as part-time are typically paid by the course, without benefits, many college teachers lack access to health insurance and retirement plans.
- Academic freedom is in jeopardy when a majority of the faculty lack the protections of tenure and may not be reappointed over any complaint.
We believe that all types of faculty should have access to the protections of academic freedom and tenure, just compensation, due process protections, and inclusion in institutional governance.
Here’s what you can do today:
A group of tenured, tenure-track, and contingent faculty is circulating an open letter to the editors of U.S. News and World Report’s Best Colleges Ranking system proposing that the magazine consider adjusting the “faculty resources” section of the rankings in order to reflect more accurately current academic realities. Add your name to the letter here.
Spread the word. Click the graphic to share it on Facebook and spread the word about contingency. (Prefer Twitter? Click here to tweet.)
You can also check out our CEW 2017 resources on our One Faculty, One Resistance campaign page.
To a great week for campus equity!
P.S. Want to print the graphic? Click here to download it.