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Education


Ohio's adjunct professors prepare to lobby for benefits
New association says part-time university faculty deserve more rights
by WKSU's AMY COOKNICK


Reporter
Amy Cooknick
 
In The Region:

A group of part-time faculty members at a handful of Ohio universities hopes to improve benefits for adjunct professors by lobbying the Ohio General Assembly.

The Ohio Part-Time Faculty Association is the brainchild of Matt Williams, former adjunct lecturer at the University of Akron, and Maria Maisto, an adjunct at Cuyahoga Community College. Both are founding members of New Faculty Majority, a national organization to improve the working conditions of part-time public university faculty.

Williams says current Ohio law does not consider part-time faculty state employees for collective bargaining or unemployment purposes. Nationwide, adjuncts form about 60 percent of university faculty, but receive less than 2.5 percent of university funding on average.

Williams on allocation of resources

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Williams says OPTFA is preparing for a major membership drive to increase awareness of the disparity between part-time and full-time rights and to establish the organization on more campuses statewide.   

Listener Comments:

After a lifetime of waiting for my dream of being a teacher, I'm now facing the possibility that I won't be able to find a full time position when I graduate in a year with my MFA. I haven't even started working and I'm already worried about my job.


Posted by: Marybeth Cieplinski (Kent, OH) on April 18, 2013 12:04PM
I agree wholeheartedly with OPTFA efforts, and I only wish it were national, as here in the south we really need more adjunct visibility. Sadly, we have none. Yet the facts are very real. Out of the 1.5 million instructors in the US, 1 million are contingent faculty. And of those, the average pay is $2700/course, most without healthcare. With the upcoming ACA regulations, many colleges are cutting already precarious adjunct hours, leaving our fragile existence in the lurch. What kind of life is this for today's knowledge workers? Teacher working conditions become student learning afflictions. If we have to teach at 2, 3, 4 teaching gigs to make ends meet, no matter how well we teach, don't you think this will affect student needs? Please help get the word out to the public that education is failing, and it is in our power to reverse it. And while you're at it, sign my petition for adjunct justice: http://signon.org/sign/better-pay-for-adjuncts.fb1?

Ana M. Fores Tamayo
Adjunct Justice
Petition: http://signon.org/sign/better-pay-for-adjuncts.fb1?source=c.fb


Posted by: Ana M. Fores Tamayo (Keller, Texas) on April 17, 2013 9:04AM
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