Recently, an 83 year old “adjunct professor” passed away, and her sad death generated headlines. She was nearly destitute, and her passing for an all too brief moment shined a light on the plight of “contingent” faculty in US higher education. But the public’s attention span is short, and her story, I’m afraid, will be quickly forgotten.
For many years I have sought to educate people about the issues of part-time faculty. Most people are shocked when they hear how many part-time instructors there are and how poorly they are paid. I am convinced that only a widespread effort of awakening public awareness is going to change the situation.
Please Sound Off on the following: What can we do to “spread the word” on the issue of part-time faculty in American Higher Education? How can we get this before the public and keep it there long enough for meaningful changes to be made? Do you have any questions or ideas to put into the mix?
Mark James Miller, President, Part-Time Faculty Association of Allan Hancock College, CFT Local 6185, Santa Maria, CA