[ View the story "#NotYourAdjunctSidekick: Adjunct professors highlight poor working conditions" on Storify] #NotYourAdjunctSidekick: Adjunct professors highlight poor working conditions Current and former adjunct professors, as well as those they taught, advocate better working conditions for contingent faculty.
AJAMStream· Tue, Jan 28 2014 14:42:45
We may be #adjunct teachers but we make up the majority of the faculty, nation-wide, 75% of us on subsistence wages #NotYourAdjunctSideKickNicky Schildkraut
60% of college instructors are adjunct. We ARE foundation of higher ed in US. Wouldn't know that by the disrespect. #NotYourAdjunctSidekickCarrie O'Connell
The adjunct system is higher ed's way of skirting the obligation to do right by the people invested in education. #notyouradjunctsidekickEd Cunard
Confession: I'm a recovering adjunct (taught Image of Women in Asian Cinema at CCNY). It almost broke me as a human. #NotYourAdjunctSidekickJeff Yang
Some used the hashtag to discuss lack of viable alternatives for those looking to enter academic fields.
Just like unpaid internships, adjunct positions can only be taken by financially secure, threfore reinforces divide #NotYourAdjunctSidekickevren uzer
I may have made the "choice" to adjunct, but the other option was unemployed. #adjunctsolidarity #NotYourAdjunctSidekickCaitlin Martin
Try explaining this job horror to new grad students. What are the alternatives if you love intellectual work? #NotYourAdjunctSidekickRabfish
Many criticized the lack of promotional opportunities for adjunct professors.
You'll never promote me but you want me to help those new FT faculty get acclimated because I've been here so long? #NotYourAdjunctSidekickJoseph Fruscione
Promotion doesn't exist. If you're an adjunct, you're in a dead-end job at that school. #notyouradjunctsidekickBrianne Bolin
Working conditions make college teaching a dead-end job. The state of our nation's educational health=malaise #notyouradjunctsidekickDr. D
Some attributed the lack of promotional opportunities to working conditions that prevent adjunct professors from offering the best possible teaching and scholarship. In a recent
, 98 percent of adjunct professors said they were “missing opportunities to better serve their students because of the demands of their schedule.”
Finally, I get no $$ 4 research, no pay bump 4 publishing & no help to attend conferences that support my teaching. #notyouradjunctsidekickTheLittlePecan
Bad marks evaluations because not enough time for office hours when I have to drive 2 hours to the next class #notyouradjunctsidekickRobb Lauzon
Others said the problem of working conditions for adjunct professors goes unnoticed because of fear of retribution from universities.
I'm afraid to speak up lest someone docks my pay or takes away my insura....wait #NotYourAdjunctSidekickUncle Larry
#NotYourAdjunctSidekick because adjuncts were afraid to speak to student journos about their problems for fear of major repercussions.Sarah Hayes
Adjunct professors make up a significant portion of teaching staff at institutions of higher learning. Since 1975, the percentage of college professors who are tenured and tenure-track
from 45 percent to less than 25 percent.
Recently, the plight of adjunct professors has caught the attention of Congress. The Democratic staff of the House Committee on Education and the Workforce released a
outlining research and anecdotal stories about working conditions for contingent faculty.
Rep. George Miller, the ranking member of the committee,
, “The trend should be of concern to policymakers both because of what it means for the living standards and the work lives of those individuals we expect to educate the next generation of scientists, entrepreneurs, and other highly skilled workers, and what it may mean for the quality of higher education itself.”
Thanks to community members Diala and Suey Park for alerting The Stream to this story. What do you think? Leave us your thoughts on working conditions for adjunct professors in the comments below.