5:01 PM Eastern - Thursday, October 18, 2012

The Politics of Contingent Academic Labor #default

At colleges and universities, a lack of commitment to job security and academic freedom has great consequences that weaken the culture and academic rigor of the university. Claire Goldstein, a professorial lecturer at American University worked closely with SEIU Local 500 to research and detail how adjunct professors and lecturers experience fewer worker advancements and inequality in the workplace. Read an excerpt from her research below.

"The alarming stories from adjunct faculty, who now comprise a majority of higher-education teachers nationally, share troubling commonalities: adjuncts paid less than a living wage, some as little as $900 per course; adjuncts ineligible to receive health and retirement benefits; adjuncts eligible for food stamps; adjuncts concurrently teaching seven courses on four different campuses; adjuncts forced to choose between paying for health care and groceries; adjuncts who enjoy a mere fifteen weeks of job security at a time; adjuncts assigned to teach the day before school begins; adjuncts required to schedule office hours without offices; adjuncts excluded from university governance despite their high numbers among faculty; adjuncts who, notwithstanding years of service, remain nameless and faceless entities in their departments. The frustrations are financial, personal, and professional."

Read More Here.

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