This weekend I enjoyed a lively discussion with folks at the World Fellowship Center where I presented on the state of adjunct abuse by colleges and universities in this country and in our state. Until I can flesh out my bullet points into a cohesive blog post--or several posts--I invite you to enjoy some of my slides (which I didn't share with my audience since we sat in adirondack chairs on the lawn that looked out over Mount Chocorua).
Monday, August 17, 2015
Monday, August 03, 2015
Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Are you prepping for autumn classes? Do you already have your contract, or are you anticipating teaching this fall based on earlier conversations and/or emails?
|Pre-term preps. THEN vacation.|
I'm heading on vacation with my family the week before classes start, so I will take some time over these next couple weeks of adjunct summer to prep for the two classes I've been asked to teach. I haven't yet received my contracts, nor do I expect them until the week I'm gone. However, I checked the university’s registration page and have confirmed that my classes have each reached the magical minimum enrollment number. Thus, I feel reasonably certain that—unlike past semesters in courses that have been cancelled at the last moment—my class preps will not be in vain.
Still, over the years I've learned to limit my losses by prepping no more than ten hours per class before my contract is in hand. It doesn't really matter since I’m paid for exactly zero of my pre-term prep hours. But that's focusing on the negative. The positive is this: I love to teach. And because my enrollments are high so far, it looks like I'll have one more semester to do just that.
How about you? How many hours will you/have you put in for class preparations? Average it for one class, and complete the simple poll in the right-hand margin. Then, if you're game, let us know how much you're paid on average per hour of class preps in the second poll. Polls close on Labor Day.
Tuesday, March 03, 2015
I’m an adjunct faculty member at the University of New Hampshire at Manchester. Because there are so many adjuncts, I am a member of one of the majority populations on our campus. As such, I enjoy the following benefits:
- Free Parking
While I enjoy my benefit of free parking, it is
- I enjoy working with the curious, creative, and dedicated UNH students
- I appreciate watching as my students grasp what I am sharing with them
- I treasure the many opportunities to celebrate the successes of my students
But I am exhausted by years of neglect from a system that does not value my service. Therefore, in addition to the free parking--or in exchange for that golden ticket--I would like to see:
- Equal pay for my work, acknowledging my experience, education, and dedication to the same degree as my tenured associates
- Health benefits
- Education benefits
- Retirement benefits
- Multi-semester contracts
- An office, even if shared, with privacy and storage space
- A way to easily communicate with my adjunct colleagues
I know it’s a shock that I would give up my free parking for all of the benefits that usually accompany a profession, but that’s the sacrifice I’m willing to make.
Monday, February 23, 2015
Working with the students for more than a decade at the University of New Hampshire at Manchester has been an amazing experience. Not only are the students dedicated to their education, but many of them hold down a job and are involved with their families.
However, working for extremely low wages, without benefits or an office, and asked to commit to a semester's schedule when the class might not even run due to low enrollment, has become burdensome. There are a couple of us who have been talking about organizing over the past year. With National Adjunct Walkout Day (or Teach-In Day, which is how I plan to use it) scheduled for this week, now is a good time to talk about our options.
I created a flyer that I asked to be emailed to the adjunct professors; however, I was informed this morning that it was not going to be forwarded. Therefore, I am trying to reach my colleagues through various social media outlets. Please help me spread the word; feel free to send this information to any professors you know.
If you're an adjunct professor at UNH Manchester--and you're interested in possibly organizing--please contact me through the comments section, via Twitter @biscottidana, or drop me a note in my on-campus mailbox (listed under "Myskowski"). I will be happy to share with you the link to the password-protected on-line survey for UNH Manchester adjuncts.
Thank you. And happy #NAWD!