A Letter to Deans and Department Chairs

Dear Colleague,

In conjunction with Campus Equity Week (26–30 October), we, the members of the MLA’s Committee on Contingent Labor in the Profession, ask for your commitment to ensuring job security for all faculty members on your campus.

What You Can Do

We call on you to offer multiyear contracts for all non-tenure-track faculty appointments, whether full- or part-time.

Are multiyear contracts already standard in your department or institution? If not, why? What would need to change for your department or institution to offer them? Tell us about the situation on your campus.

What’s at Stake?

We believe that advances in job security on your campus will benefit not only contingent faculty members but also the students they teach and the departments they serve.

  • Contingent faculty members teaching off the tenure track, especially in part-time appointments, face roadblocks in sustaining mentoring relationships with their students and collaborations with their faculty colleagues.
  • The conditions of employment of these faculty members compromise their departments’ ability to meet institutional expectations for educational standards and consistent student learning across courses and course levels. The instructor’s working conditions are the student’s learning conditions.
  • Individual faculty members’ struggles with the financial, professional, and personal costs of contingency have been well documented.

Coordinated by the New Faculty Majority, Campus Equity Week seeks to draw attention to improving working conditions for contingent faculty members through a series of actions across the country. We encourage you to visit the Campus Equity Week site and to read our recommendations and guide to self-study, Professional Employment Practices for Non-Tenure-Track Faculty Members.

Sincerely,

The MLA Committee on Contingent Labor in the Profession

Mary-Beth Brophy
Cynthia A. Current
Pamela Herron
Paula Krebs
Veronica Popp
Heidi Tiedemann Darroch
Nicole B. Wallack
Andrew Yale

and Rosemary G. Feal (ex-officio)

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