Thursday, June 22, 2017

Proposed Israeli "Code of Ethics" Violates Academic Freedom

AAUP- National
June 19, 2017

The following is a statement of the AAUP and the American Federation of Teachers.

The code of ethics' that the government of Israel is considering for the country's academic institutions is a threat not only to academic freedom in Israel, but to Israel's standing as a democracy.  We join with colleagues in Israel's Association of University Heads, and with the National Union of Israel Students, in condemning it.

Read the full statement at the national AAUP website here.

Monday, June 19, 2017

AAUP Removes Two from Academic Freedom Censure List, Adds Two

June 17, 2017

U of Illinois and Phillips Community College Removed from Censure List; Spalding U and Community College of Aurora Added

Washington, D.C. - Delegates to the 103rd annual meeting of the American Association of University Professors voted today to remove the University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign and Phillips Community College of the University of Arkansas from the AAUP's list of administrations censured for violating principles and standards of academic freedom.  The vote recognized that both institutions had successfully amended problematic policies and addressed the conditions that had brought about the original censure.  Delegates also voted to impose censure on Spalding University (Kentucky) and the Community College of Aurora (Colorado), based on investigations conducted this year that revealed serious departures from principles and standards of academic freedom at those institutions.

Read the full article at the National AAUP website here.

Committee A 2017 Censure Recommendations

AAUP National
June 15, 2017

Committee A submitted the following resolutions regarding censure and censure removal for the annual delegation.

See the files and download them at the National AAUP website here.

Border Patrol Searches of Electronic Devices

AAUP National
June 13, 2017

In conjunction with the Knight First Amendment Institute at Columbia University, the AAUP is seeking information from any faculty members who have had their cell phones or other electronic devices searched by US border patrol officers at the nation's borders while travelling internationally.  The Knight First Amendment Institute is a recently created non-profit organization that works to defend an strengthen freedoms of speech and the press in the digital age through litigation, research, and education.

The AAUP is concerned with the chilling effect such searches may have on academic freedom and the invasion into the privacy of academic work.  We are looking into legal issues related to a US regulation that authorizes border patrol officers to search a traveler's cell phones and other electronic devices at the borders without any basis for suspecting that the person has done anything wrong.  The government enforces this policy against both American citizens as well as noncitizens, and there has been a sharp uptick in these types of searches over the past year.

Read the full article at the National AAUP website here.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Race, Ethnicity, and Gender of Full-Time Faculty at More Than 3,700 Institutions

The Chronicle of Higher Education
June 12, 2017

The sortable table below shows the percentages of full-time faculty members who were members of specific racial and ethnic groups at degree-granting colleges and universities in November 2015.

View the interactive table at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Scholars See Bad Omens in Pulled Sponsorship of 'Julius Caesar'

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Fernando Zamudio-Suaréz
June 12, 2017

After Delta Air Lines and Bank of America pulled their sponsorship from the New York Public Theater's production of Shakespeare's Julius Caesar, scholars were quick to lampoon the decision.

This year's free Public Theater performance sets Shakespeare's drama in modern dress, and presents Julius Caesar as a figure resembling President Trump - complete with blond hair, blue suit, and gold bathtub, according to a review in The New York Times.

Verena Dobnik, AP Images
Read the full article at The Chronicle for Higher Education's website here.

Another Appeals Court Rejects Trump's Travel Ban

Inside Higher Ed
By Elizabeth Redden
June 13, 2017

A second federal appeals court ruled Monday against President Trump's travel ban, upholding an injunction imposed by a lower court.  The Trump administration has asked the Supreme Court to rule on the president's executive order banning entry into the U.S. for nationals of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, which Trump argues is necessary to prevent the entry of terrorists.  Critics of the ban see it as a pretext for banning the entry of Muslims, a step Trump called for in his campaign.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, which is based in Virginia, had already ruled against the Trump administration, finding that the travel ban amounted to religious discrimination.  In its ruling Monday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which is based in California, found that the president had exceeded his authority in issuing the order, which also suspended and capped the refugee admissions program.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Jordan Schnitzer gives PSU $5 million for art museum in downtown Portland

By Andrew Theen
June 8, 2017

Jordan Schnitzer, the Portland real estate developer and philanthropist, will give $5 million to Portland State University to open an art museum in the heart of campus.

The school and the Portland native announced the gift during a Thursday morning news conference.  The 7,500-square-foot art museum will bear Schnitzer's name and occupy parts of two floors of Neuberger Hall.

A rendering of the proposed Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art.
(Courtesy of PSU)
Read the full article at the OregonLive website here.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

GOP Skeptical on Trump Budget

Inside Higher Ed
By Andrew Kreighbaum
June 7, 2017

Washington -- When Education Secretary Betsy DeVos makes an appearance before lawmakers on Capitol Hill, one would expect a hostile reception from Democrats who have opposed her since she was nominated for the job.  Less expected is open skepticism from Republicans.

That's exactly what DeVos got Tuesday, however, at a Senate appropriations subcommittee hearing on the proposed White House budget for 2018 which includes deep cuts to education programs as well as other nondefense spending.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Monday, June 5, 2017

As New Threat Closes Evergreen State, Students Rip Legislation That Would Cut Its Funding

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Chris Quintana
June 5, 2017

A student-government organization in Washington State on Monday condemned proposed legislation that would strip funding from Evergreen State College, an institution embroiled in student protests and allegations of racism.

The statement was issued by the Washington Student Association, which represents college students statewide, on the same day that classes at Evergreen were canceled for a third weekday in a row so local law-enforcement officials could "review new external threat information received over the weekend."

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Colleges Declare They Are 'Still In' on Paris Goals

Inside Higher Ed
By Scott Jaschik
June 5, 2017

Many college and university presidents have signed a statement -- "We Are Still In" -- that will be released today.  The statement will also be signed by governors, mayors and business leaders -- all pledging to continue efforts to meet the environmental goals outlined in the Paris Agreement, the pact from which President Trump announced last week that he would withdraw the United States.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

5 Forces That Drive Administrative 'Bloat'

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Audrey Williams June
May 25, 2017

The state auditor of California last month released a report saying that the California State University system had hired managers at more than twice the rate of other employees over a nine-year period without explaining why it needed to bring on so any people.

"Campuses were often unable to justify the number of management personnel they hired," the report said, "and consequently they could not demonstrate that they are providing these services in the most cost-effective manner."

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

'I Won't Give Up': How First-Generation Students See College

The New York Times
By Elizabeth A. Harris
May 30, 2017

Getting into college and making it through can be hard no matter what your circumstances.  But for first-generation students - the first in their families to attend college - the challenges are even greater because they must tackle them largely on their own.  Students whose parents have gone to college can draw on that experience, perhaps talking to them about filling out applications or picking a major.  Many college-educated parents also help their children financially, or provide a cushion if things go awry.

New York Times
But, said Dr. Michael V. Drake, president of Ohio State University, a lot of first-generation students have feelings of doubts of whether they really belong.  They can't call home and ask their parents how college was for them.  "I think all those things that pertain to being the first anyone who's doing something, you really are a pioneer," Dr. Drake said.  "That can be exhilarating, but it can also be a little unnerving."

Read the full article at the New York Times website here.

Friday, May 26, 2017

A Damaging Budget Proposal

AAUP- National
May 26, 2017

The Trump administration's budget proposal for the 2018 fiscal year would make drastic cuts to education, slashing federal student aid and research funding.  The proposal, released May 22, fleshes out the "skinny budget" released by the administration in March.

Read the full article with information on cuts in student aid, arts and humanities, science, and international education at the AAUP website here.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

NLRB Issues Second Decision Allowing the Unionization of Undergraduates

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
May 24, 2017

The National Labor Relations Board has cleared the way for the unionization of student employees of the University of Chicago's libraries, marking the second time this spring that it has declared undergraduate students eligible to bargain collectively.

In a ruling handed down on Tuesday, Peter Sung Ohr, director of the NLRB's regional office in Chicago, rejected the university's argument that the paid student workers in its libraries should be precluded from unionization because its relationship with them is primarily educational.  Undergraduates account for the overwhelmingly majority of the more than 220 student workers that the decision allows to on forming a collective-bargaining unit, which would be affiliated with the International Brotherhood of Teamsters.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Yale Grad Students' Fast Ends: What Did It Achieve

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Vimal Patel
May 23, 2017

A month long fast by Yale University graduate students advocating for a union ended Monday with mixed success: Protesters attracted plenty of national and even international attention, but the university is no longer closer to taking a seat at the collective-bargaining table.

Graduate students at private colleges won the right to form unions in a National Labor Relations Board ruling in August.  Since then many campuses have held union elections.  Students voted overwhelmingly to unionize at some places, like Columbia University, while drives in others, like Duke University were soundly defeated.

Read the full at the Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Monday, May 22, 2017

"I Was a Threat Because I Wouldn't Be Quiet"

AAUP- National
May 16, 2017

An investigative report released today by the American Association of University Professors concludes that the administration of Spalding University in Louisville, Kentucky, summarily dismissed Erlene Grise-Owens, a long serving professor of social work, in blatant violation of academic freedom and due process.  An AAUP investigating committee visited Louisville and interviewed Professor Grise-Owens and other current and former Spalding faculty members.  Members of the Spalding administration declined to meet with the committee.

Read the full report at the AAUP website here.

Legislation on Free Speach

AAUP- National
May 11, 2017

Several state legislatures have recently passed or reintroduced legislation that addresses issues related to campus free speech.  Given the important role of colleges and universities in debate, dissent, and the free exchange of ideas, the AAUP strongly supports freedom of expression on campus and the rights of faculty and students to invite speakers of their choosing.  We oppose, however, any legislation that interferes with the institutional autonomy of colleges and universities by undermining the role of faculty, administrations, and governing board in institutional decision-making and the role of students in the formulation and application of institutional policies affecting student affairs.  The appropriate institutional regulations on campus free speech and protest, the invitation of outside speakers, and student discipline should be adopted through normal channels of institutional governance, and such regulations should be consistent with Association-approved statements on Freedom of Expression and Campus Speech Codes, Academic Freedom and Outside Speakers, and the Joint Statement on Rights and Freedom of Students.

Read the original post on the AAUP website here.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Mills College Declares Financial Emergency and May Cut 30 to 35 Jobs

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Charles Huckabee
May 16, 2017

Mills College, a liberal-arts institution for women in Oakland, Calif., declared a financial emergency on Tuesday as a first step toward dealing with financial challenges, including a projected $9.1-million deficit in the coming fiscal year.

In a news release and in a statement emailed to faculty, staff, and students on Tuesday afternoon, the college described the Board of Trustees' approval of the declaration of emergency as a step that authorizes Mills to restructure all of its expenses in pursuit of financial stability.

Read the full article in The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Bradley Foundation Bankrolls Attacks on Unions

The Center for Media and Democracy
By Mary Bottari
May 8, 2017

Documents examined by the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) expose a national effort by the Milwaukee-based Lynde and Harry Bradley Foundation to defund and dismantle unions, the most significant force for higher wages and better working conditions in America.

The Center for Media and Democracy
Publicly, the Bradley Foundation spins this agenda as "employee rights."  Behind the scenes, newly disclosed Bradley documents detail an aggressive political agenda.

Read the full article at the Center for Media and Democracy's website here.

Monday, May 8, 2017

Statement on the UNC Center for Civil Rights

AAUP- National
By AAUP President Rudy Fichtenbaum
May 8, 2017

Founded in 2001 by the legendary African American civil rights attorney Julius Chambers, the UNC Center for Civil Rights brings together students and faculty, as well as policy experts and practicing attorneys, to advocate for the poor and for racial and ethnic minorities.  It focuses on legal and social issues in the area of education, housing, community development, economic justice, and voting rights.

One of the critical functions of the center is to train students by giving them hands on experience with litigation.  Clearly the work of the center, including its litigation work, is consistent with the mission of the University of North Carolina, of which it is a part.  UNC's mission statement recognizes the value of public service in that it contributes "to the solution of societal problems and enriches the quality of life in the State."  Efforts to prevent the center from engaging in litigation represents a challenge to both the principles of academic freedom and shared governance.

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.

University of Chicago Graduate Employees File to Form Union

May 8, 2017

Today a strong majority of graduate employees at the Unversity of Chicago filed authorization cards with the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) to hold a formal union recognition election.  Members of the Graduate Students United (GSU) personally visited the regional NLRB office to deliver the cards, signed by grad workers from six of the university divisions.  The union will be affiliated with the AAUP, the Illinois Federation of Teachers (IFT), and the American Federation of Teachers (AFT).

The next step is an official election for union recognition, which will conclude by the end of June, with more than 2,000 graduate workers eligible to vote.

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.

Better Prospects for Unemployment Compensation

AAUP- National
May 5, 2017

New guidance from the United States Department of Labor heightens the potential for faculty on contingent appointments to get unemployment compensation over breaks between semesters.  The guidance, Unemployment Insurance Programs Letter No. 05-17, explains the unemployment compensation standards applied to contingent faculty members and increases the likelihood that they will be eligible for unemployment.

The AAUP, along with a coalition of other organizations provided information to the labor department regarding the changed reality of contingent faculty on university campuses.  The recent guidance, echoing themes raised with the department and articulated by the AAUP for years, explicitly acknowledged that "the employment model educational institutions follows has changed appreciably, particularly for institutions of higher education.  In higher education the use of part-time instructors, often referred to as "adjunct" or "contingent" faculty, has increased significantly."

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Women in Leadership Searches

Inside Higher Ed
By Rick Seltzer
May 1, 2017

A study presented Friday at the American Educational Research Association's annual meeting shines some light on the way women are hired for top higher education leadership positions in searches involving third-party executive search firms.

For the study, Harvard Ph.D. student Jeraul C. Mackey obtained access to proprietary data from a search firm that remained anonymous.  The data covered almost 500 searches over an eight-year period starting in 2009.  Mackey ultimately analyzed a subset of the data covering 250 searches for two- and four-year public and private nonprofit institutions.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

'Volatile' but Growing Online ED Market

Inside Higher Ed
By Carl Straumsheim
May 2, 2017

In fall 2012, the University of Phoenix soared above other distance education providers.  At the time, more than 256,000 students took at least one online course there--nearly 200,000 more than the next institution on the list.  Southern New Hampshire University, by the same metric, ranked 50th.

Three years later, Phoenix still topped the list, but the number of students taking at least one online course there had dropped by nearly 100,000.  SNHU, meanwhile, had seen roughly fivefold increase, climbing 46 spots to No. 4.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

3 Deans Are Suddenly Dismissed at Florida A&M

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Alex Arriaga
May 2, 2017

Florida A&M University's deans of pharmacy, journalism, and education were dismissed on Monday, effective immediately.

Rodner Wright, the interim provost, announced that Ann Kimbrough, of the School of Journalism and Graphic Communication; Michael Thompson, of the College of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Services; and Traki L. Taylor, of the College of Education, had been removed from their posts.  Interim replacements will take their positions immediately, the Tallahassee Democrat reported.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

With Final Exams Looming, Faculty Strikes at U. of Illinois at Springfield

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Adam Harris
May 2, 2017

Faculty members at the University of Illinois at Springfield began a strike on Tuesday after failing to reach an agreement on a new contract with the administration, The State Journal-Register reports.  A message posted Monday evening on the website of UIS United Faculty, the faculty union, by its executive board and negotiating team opened plainly: " Bad news. Strike is on."

Both tenured and tenure-track faculty members took to the picket lines on Tuesday, during the last week of classes and just a week before final examinations are scheduled.  "As you know, we have been bargaining for some time now on reappointment, tenure, and promotion language that recognizes existing policy, and which would have protections to ensure the fairness and integrity of the process," the union's website said.  The university has been negotiating with the faculty union for several months.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Want Happier Professors? Try Being Nice

The Chronicle of  Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
April 28, 2017

When it comes to keeping tenured professors content in their jobs, you can catch more flies with honey than you can with big faculty-focused strategic narratives, a new study suggests.

The study, based on survey data from more than 3,600 recently tenured associate professors at doctoral universities, found that their organizational commitment hinged far more on whether they believed they worked in a caring, supportive environment than on their sense that administrators had undertaken broad efforts to support the faculty.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Monday, May 1, 2017

In Trump's First 100 Days, Higher Ed Sees More Shadow Than Substance

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Adam Harris
April 28, 2017

At an October campaign rally in Columbus, Ohio, Donald Trump, then the Republican nominee for president, gave his most substantive speech on higher education policy.  He suggested a simplification of income-driven repayment plans for student-loan borrowers and railed against government regulations - a staple of his campaign.  Mr. Trump vowed that is he became president, he would "immediately take steps to drive down college costs by reducing the unnecessary costs of compliance with federal regulations so that colleges can pass on the savings to students in the form of lower tuition."
Drew Angerer/ Getty Images

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Friday, April 28, 2017

In the age of Trump, can labor unite?

In These Times
By Alexandra Bradbury
April 26, 2017

You know you're getting the short end of the stick as a worker, but you don't really know why," says Joe Tarulli, a Staten Island Verizon tech who's put in 17 years with the company.  "They make it seem like these rich people are just lucky they got the right chances, and these poor old working folks, nothing ever goes right for them.  No!  These corporations are doing it on purpose."

In These Times May 2017 Issue
Last spring Tarulli and 39,000 Verizon workers were forced out on a 49-day strike to fend off outsourcing and other concessions demanded by the company, even as it raked in billions of profits.  Democratic primary candidate Bernie Sanders walked the picket line with them to draw media attention to their battle against corporate greed.  But in the general election, Tarulli says many of his coworkers went on to vote for Donald Trump, who spoke to the anger that had motivated them to strike in the first place.  "Trump's a great communicator," says Tarulli.  "For a long time people felt ignored, even by their own unions, because these companies take advantage of them so badly."

Read the full article at the In These Times website here.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

A Worrisome Harbinger of Changes in Copyright Law

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Pamela Samuelson
April 23, 2017

With all the dysfunction in the White House and Capitol Hill this year, you might think that the copyright bills pending before Congress do not need your attention.  Think again.  Momentum is building for three of these measures, and their impact on institutions of higher education will not be welcome.

The most likely of the bills to pass (and scheduled this week) is the Register of Copyrights Selection and Accountability Act of 2017.  It has bipartisan support from 32 cosponsors in the House, and endorsement of three key members of the Senate Judiciary Committee.  The bill calls for the Register of Copyrights to be a presidential appointee for a 10-year term, subject to Senate confirmation.  This bill has already been reported out of the House Judiciary Committee.

Boris Séméniako for The Chronicle
Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

After a Week of Protest, U. of Utah Cancer Researcher Is Reinstated

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Alex Arriaga
April 25, 2017

A week after the University of Utah announced that the chief executive and director of its Huntsman Cancer Institute was leaving her post, she's been reinstated.

"Effective today we have changed HCI's reporting structure, and Dr. Beckerle will report directly to the president of the university," the statement said.  "I am grateful for her committed leadership and look forward to working with her in the coming years."

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

This is a follow up to the article, Top Researcher's Departure Prompts Faculty Protest at U. of Utah Institute which can be read here.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Enrollment Declines, Transfer Barriers: Community College President's Survey

Inside Higher Ed
By Ashley A. Smith and Doug Lederman
April 21, 2017

Six in 10 leaders of community colleges say their enrollments have declined in the past three years, including 21 percent who say enrollment is down by 10 percent or more, according to Inside Higher Eds 2017 Survey of Community College Presidents.

The survey, conducted by Gallup, is based on responses from 236 leaders of two-year colleges, who were queried about recruitment, the future of free community college and the emerging talent pool for new presidents, among other topics.

Read the full article and survey results at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

In the DeVos Era, New Higher-Ed Policy Could Come From the Senate

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Adam Harris
April 24, 2017

Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
Recent moves by the Education Department have raised the alarms of students, advocates, and reformers alike.  But the executive branch is not the only place where policy is set.  In recent years, the U.S. Senate has taken the lead on policies that have left a sharp imprint on higher education.  So what will legislators be able to accomplish on higher ed this Congress?

The U.S. Senate Committee on Heath, Education, Labor, and Pensions has, over the last several years, successfully advanced a fair amount of bipartisan legislation.  But several early disputes may strain that bipartisanship, weakening the chances of reauthorizing the Higher Education Act.  The most recent act, which is the major piece of legislation governing policy on post secondary education, was set to expire in 2013, but was extended through last year to allow legislators more time to work on an updated version.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

2 Illinois Professors Were Laid Off. Then They Got Tenure. Now What?

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Sarah Brown
April 21, 2017
Holly Stovall, a professor of women's studies at Western
Illinois U., received word that she would be laid off about six
months before she got tenure. "The sense of betrayal is really
traumatic for me." she says.

On May 6, 2016, Holly A. Strovall received the news she'd spent much of her life working toward.

Jack Thomas, president of Western Illinois University, told the women's studies scholar that, after more than a decade on the faculty, she was one step away from receiving tenure.  Once the institution's Board of Trustees signed off, it would be official.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Resident Advisers Gain the Right to Unionize

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
April 21, 2017

George Washington U./ Getty Images
The right to unionize has been extended to resident advisers at private colleges, thanks to a National Labor Relations Board officer's decision involving George Washington University.

The unprecedented ruling, by Sean R. Marshall, acting regional director of the NLRB's Baltimore office, could open the door to efforts to unionize resident advisers and other undergraduate employees throughout private higher education.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Support for public higher education rose in 33 states and declined in 17 in 2016

The Chronicle of Higher Education
Illinois and Everyone Else
By Rick Seltzer
April 20, 2017

It's impossible to examine state higher education finances in 2016 without separating the collapse in Illinois from a more nuanced picture across the rest of the country.

State and local support for higher education in Illinois plunged as the state's law makers and governor were unable to reach a budget agreement and instead passed severely pared-down stopgap funding.  Educational appropriations per full-time equivalent student in the state skidded 80 percent year over year, from $10,986 to $2,196.  Enrollment in public institutions dropped by 11 percent, or 46,000 students.

Read the full article with a link to the report at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

AAUP Supports College For All Act

April 19, 2017

The AAUP endorsed the College for All Act, introduced this month by Sen. Bernie Sanders and Rep. Pramila Jayapal, which would make four-year public college free for families making less than $125,000 and make community college free for all.  Funding would come from a Wall Street speculation tax.  It would also student loan debts by cutting all student loan interest rates for new borrowers while also preventing the federal government from profiting off the student-loan program.  The College for All Act restores the promise that higher education is an accessible public good, not a privilege for the wealthy few.

Rudy Fichtenbaum, AAUP president said, "The College for All Act reaffirms our commitment to quality, public higher education as a right for all Americans.  It would expand access to higher education and would help former students already saddled with large student debt to refinance at rates that are offered for new student loans.  It would cut down on the abuse of adjunct labor and strengthen academic freedom protections by increasing the percentage of tenured and tenured-track faculty.  The AAUP is proud to endorse the College for All Act."

Read the College for All fact sheet here.
Read the College for All Act here.

Read the original article on the AAUP website here.

Baylor U.'s Pick as New President Will Be First Woman at Its Helm

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Fernanda Zamudio-Suaréz
April 18, 2017

Linda A. Livingstone, dean and professor of management at the George Washington University School of Business, will be the new president of Baylor University, it announced on Tuesday in a news release.

She will be the first woman to serve as president of the Texas institution, the world's largest Baptist university, and will take office on June 1.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Top Researcher's Departure Prompts Faculty Protest at U. of Utah Institute

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Alex Arriaga
April 18, 2017

After 11 years as chief executive and director of the University of Utah's Huntsman Cancer Institute, Mary Beckerle will leave the posts, a move that has faculty members upset.

The university's senior vice president for health services, Vivian Lee, notified the faculty in an email on Monday but did not offer an explanation, according to The Salt Lake Tribune.

Read the f ull article at The Chronicle for Higher Education website here.

Berkeley Cancels Speech by Ann Coulter, citing Possibility of Rioting

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Chris Quintana
April 19, 2017

Citing security concerns, administrators at the University of California at Berkeley have cancelled a planned speech by the right-wing commentator Ann Coulter.
Photo: Fernando Leon

The San Francisco Chronicle reports that vice chancellors at the university emailed the student groups hosting the event on Tuesday night with the news of the cancelled event.

Read the full article at the Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Faculty Union at Rider U. Votes No Confidence in University's President

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Alex Arriaga
April 19, 2017

Members of Rider University's faculty union have voted no confidence in the New Jersey institution's president, Gregory G. Dell'Omo, with 75 percent of the votes against him.

"A series of rash actions by President Dell'Omo and a decade of dubious financial management by his financial team has compelled Rider's faculty to pass the motion," the university's chapter of the American Association of University Professors said in a statement.

Read the full article at The Chronicle for Higher Education website here.

Friday, April 14, 2017

Black Colleges Grapple With Fresh Leadership Tensions

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Adam Harris
April 14, 2017
John S. Wilson Jr. former president of Morehouse College
(Paras Griffin, Getty Images)

Recent tensions at a handful of historically black colleges and universities have renewed concerns about the leadership troubles that have threatened to destabilize some HBCU campuses over the past year.

Read the article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

AAUP Releases Annual Faculty Compensation Report

The AAUP released their annual faculty compensation report on Tuesday, April 11.  This week, The Chronicle of Higher Education and Inside Higher Ed have released articles on the report.  Links to all three are below.

Visualizing Change: The Annual Report on the Economic Status of the Profession, 2016-17

The Chronicle of Higher Education
Faculty Salaries Barely keep Pace With Inflation

Inside Higher Ed
The More Things Change

American U Grad Students Unionize

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
April 11, 2017

Graduate student workers at American University voted to form a union affiliated with Service Employees International Union, 212 to 40, they announced Monday.  Some 761 students were eligible to vote, according to information from the university.

The National Labor Relations Board said last summer that graduate student employees at private institutions are entitled to collective bargaining.  Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Black Professors at Kentucky State Vote No Confidence in Faculty Senate's President

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Adam Harris
April 7, 2017

Members of the Faculty Caucus of Color at Kentucky State University have voted to express the "highest confidence" in Karen Bearden, chairwoman of the Board of Regents, but no confidence in Kimberly Sipes, president of the Faculty Senate.

Last month the Faculty Senate at the historically black university, in Frankfort, Ky., voted no confidence in Ms. Bearden following a rocky presidential search.  Black faculty members on the campus said the vote was split almost entirely along racial lines.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

All Members of Faculty Senate at Gordon College Resign Their Posts

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Fernanda Zamudio-Suaréz
April 7, 2017

All seven members of Gordon College's Faculty Senate resigned from their elected posts on Wednesday over disagreements with administrators over shared governance, The Tartan, the Massachusetts campus's student newspaper, reported.

According to The Boston Globe, the resignations came in an apparent show of support for a faculty member who says she was denied a promotion because she has criticized the Christian college's opposition to same-sex relationships.

Read the full article at The Chronicle for Higher Education's website here.

New York State is Set to Test Free Tuition

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Ian Withelm
April 9, 2017

New York is set to offer free tuition to public colleges for state residents who earn less than $125,000 a year, reports the Associated Press.  Under a deal between Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo, a democrat, and legislatures, students from such families will be able to enroll at campuses of the State University of New York or the City University of New York without paying tuition.

While other states allow free tuition to community colleges as well as other reduces tuition programs, the New York effort is being called the nation's first free-tuition program for middle-class families.  Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Universities Take Steps to Improve Working Conditions for Adjuncts

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Nell Gluckman
April 5, 2017

For years, Pennsylvania State University's faculty had watched the percentage of untenured professors in their ranks inch upward.  Then, about four years ago, that group was finally in the majority.  It was a wake up call.
Pennsylvania State U. Mary Miles, a senior lecturer in English
at Penn State's main Campus, has taught there for 15 years,
but she says she stillfields questions from students about
whether she is a "real professor."

"When you hit the point where you're majority fixed-term faculty, you've got some explaining to do," said Michael Bérubé, a literature professor who is chair of the University Faculty Senate's committee on faculty affairs.  "Either you come up with conversion to tenure or you come up with a good way of stabilizing and improving their working conditions and treating them like the professionals they are."

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Welcome Santa Fe Faculty! - AAUP

AAUP Updates
March 29, 2017

Full time faculty at Santa Fe Community College voted overwhelmingly today to form a union under the AAUP umbrella.  As a result, approximately fifty full time faculty at the college will now be represented by the Santa Fe Community College AAUP chapter.

The faculty won union representation by a vote margin of 93 percent to 7 percent.

Read the full article at the AAUP website here.

Cut to the Core

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
April 3, 2017

Even the best laid curricula can go awry, or at least get stale.  So colleges and universities review and revise their cores or general-education programs with some regularity.  And that's what professors at Long Island University's two major campuses had agreed to do in recent years.

Then things went off course with the unprecedented faculty lockout at LIU's Brooklyn campus in September over union contract issues.  Faculty-administrative relations, already tense, took a nosedive, and curricular revisions took a back seat.

Now in another blow to faculty morale and shared governance, professors say, the university's Board of Trustees has imposed a credit cap and timeline for the typically faculty-driven curricular review process at both the Brooklyn and C.W. Post campuses.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Twitter: Students protest LIU faculty lockout in Sept.

Koch Money Brings Distress Over a University's Well-Being Institute

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
April 4, 2017

For a place that takes its name from a Greek word fir happiness, the new Eudaimonia Institute at Wake Forest University certainly generates its share of tension and worry.

The unease stems not from anything the institute has yet done, but from its chief source of financial support: a $3.7-million donation from the Charles Koch Foundation, a major bankroller of university programs that promote libertarianism and faith in the free market.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Monday, April 3, 2017

5 Pennsylvania Campuses Warn of Possible Faculty Layoffs and Program Cuts

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Alex Arriaga
April 3, 2017

Administrators form five Pennsylvania campuses notified the faculty union for the state's public-university system that layoffs could be expected by the end of the 2017-18 academic year.

The Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties released a reaction statement to the news that California, Cheyney, Clarion, Edinboro, and Mansfield Universities of Pennsylvania face potential faculty and program cuts.

Read the full article at The Chronicle for Higher Education's website here.

Wayne State's Move to Strip 5 Professors of Tenure Sparks Unease About a Broader Threat

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Sarah Brown
April 3, 2017

As Wayne State University takes the highly unusual step of trying to strip tenure from five medical-school professors who its president says are "abusing the tenure system," some faculty members on the campus say they're concerned that more tenure threats many not be far behind.

M. Roy Wilson, who has been the university's president since 2013, drew attention on Wednesday after a Detroit News article quoted him as saying that the five professors in question "not doing anything" and that "the bar is not that high."  Hearings for one of them took place on Wednesday and Thursday.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Wayne State U.

Friday, March 31, 2017

Trump Proposal to Cut Indirect Research Payments Would Hit State Universities Hardest

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Paul Basken
March 31, 2017

The Trump administration's plan to cut billions of dollars in research spending by eliminating indirect cost reimbursements would devastate university science, especially at public institutions, experts warned.

The U.S. secretary for health and human services, Tom Price, told Congress this week that the idea is to save taxpayers money while giving them the same amount of research activity.  Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Faculty 'Diversity Statements' Are Called Threats to Academic Freedom

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
March 30, 2017

The "diversity statements" that many colleges now require of applicants for faculty positions are coming under attack by traditionalists and conservatives as threats to academic freedom.

The Oregon affiliate of the National Association of Scholars has issued a report accusing colleges in that state and elsewhere of creating "ideological litmus tests" for faculty hiring and promotion by asking candidates for statements discussing their commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Read the rest of the article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Degrees Lead on Wages

Inside Higher Ed
By Ashley A. Smith
March 29, 2017

While some states and colleges are focused on boosting certificates as a way to increase graduates' earnings more than shorter-term credentials.

A new paper from the Center for Analysis of Postsecondary Education and Employment at the Community College Research Center, at Teachers College of Columbia University, found that women on average receive a boost of about $7,200 a year for an associate degree, about 26 percent more than the earnings of women who have some college but no degree.  Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Wayne State U. seeks to Revoke Tenure for a Third Time

Wayne State U. Seeks to Revoke Tenure From 5 Medical-School Professors

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Adam Harris
March 29, 2017

Wayne State University is trying to revoke tenure from five professors in the medical school for allegedly underperforming in their academic duties, according to The Detroit News.

Hearing to withdraw tenure from the professors began on Wednesday.  All told, the university is eyeing 37 members of the faculty at the medical school who could either retire or be terminated for "grossly underperforming."  The five faculty members were also included on a list of "60 to 80 unproductive medical school faculty" generated by the Detroit university last year, the report said.

AAUP Investigation Finds Adjunct Professor Fired for Not Lowering Expectation of Philosophy Class

Inside Higher Ed reports on an investigation conducted by AAUP at the Community College of Aurora.  The adjunct professor was fired immediately, without due process.

Fired Because He Wouldn't Dumb Down a Course?

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
March 29, 2017

Students may complain about courses that are too hard, but could fighting to maintain high standards actually get a professor fired?  A new report from the American Association of University Professors alleges that Colorado's Community College of Aurora terminated an adjunct because he refused to lower his expectations for his introductory philosophy class.  The report sets the stage for the AAUP to vote on censuring Aurora for alleged violations of academic freedom later this spring, but the college denies such charges.  It blames Nathaniel Bork's termination on his own teaching "difficulties."

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

Community College of Aurora

Tuesday, March 28, 2017

15 years of success for UW center in recruiting, supporting female STEM faculty

UW Today
By James Urton
March 27, 2017

Late last year, the University of Washington's ADVANCE Center for Institutional Change quietly marked its 15th birthday.  But now, with thriving programs for early-career faculty and record numbers of female faculty in STEM fields, the center is ready to party.

Read the full article at the UW Today website here.

Deal Averts Non-Tenure-Track Strike at Ithaca

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
March 28, 2017

Ithaca College's new non-tenure-track faculty union reached a tentative contract agreement with the institution this week, averting a threatened strike.

Read the full article at the Inside Higher Ed website here.

A Defender of Impoverished Students, and a Scholar of Their Struggles

This is a video recap from Sara Goldrick-Rab's talk at SXSWedu.

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Scott Carlson
March 27, 2017

Sara Goldrick-Rab, a sociology professor at Temple University, describes how college costs and financial-aid structures cut out low-income students.  This is part of a special series of video highlights from SXSWedu, produced by The Chronicle.

Regional Labor Panels Are Hailed as Likely to Improve Colleges' Relations With Adjuncts

The topic of contingent faculty representation was a panel discussion at the 44th annual conference of the National Center for the Study of Collective Bargaining in Higher Education and the Professions.  PSU-AAUP was in attendance at the conference, see our post here.

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Peter Schmidt
March 28, 2017

When this city's construction companies need to hire plumbers, they turn to a single citwide union, United Association Local 1, to provide them.  As much as non-tenure-track faculty members might cringe at being compared to such workers, might they benefit from having colleges near them siliarly hire contingent faculty members from a single pool?

The idea of having colleges recruit contingent instructors from "hiring halls' like those used in construction trades- or, at the very least, create entities to collaboratively deal with such instructors' workplace concerns - drew remarkably strong interest here on Monday at a conference on academic labor negotiations.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education's website here.

Monday, March 27, 2017

Higher Education Could Benefit form Its Own Climate Change

Academe Blog
By Brian C. Mitchell
March 22, 2017

Image from Inside Higher Ed
Higher education is misunderstood and struggling financially, but the majority of college and university presidents are increasingly confident that their institutions are financially stable.  These seemingly contradictions were found in Inside Higher Education's annual survey of 706 campus leaders.

Let's set aside the obvious political concerns among presidents about the Trump Administration or the selection of the new U.S. Education secretary that underscored many of the questions put to the presidents in the IHE survey, which was conducted in January and early February.

Read the full article at the Academe Blog here.

Friday, March 24, 2017

Momentum Builds for May Day Strikes- Labor Notes

Momentum Builds for May Day Strikes

Labor Notes
By Jonathan Rosenblum
March 23, 2017

Shop steward Tomas Mejia sensed something was different when 600 janitors streamed into the Los Angeles union hall February 16- far more than for a regular membership meeting.  Chanting "Huelga! Huelga!" ("Strike! Strike!), they voted unanimously to strike on May Day.

This won't be a strike against their employers.  The janitors of SEIU United Service Workers West felt driven, Mejia says, "to strike with the community" against the raids, threats, and immigrant-bashing hate speech that the Trump administration has unleashed. 

Read the full Labor Notes article here.

Members of SEIU-USWW voted unanimously to strike this May Day.
They are encouraging other worker and community organizations to
mobilize for May 1. Photo: SEIU-USWW

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Ithaca College Students Support the March 28 & 29 Strike by Contingent Faculty

Students React to Contingent Faculty Strike

The Ithacan
By Sierra Guardiola
March 22, 2017

Students at Ithaca College are in the midst of preparing for a strike being held by contingent faculty March 28 and 29.  While some are throwing their support behind the faculty, others are wary as to how the strike will affect their studies.

Seniors Taylor Ford and Catherine Proulx are both members of IC Students for Labor Action, a student organization involved in showing support for the contingent faculty.  Through many mediums, they have been trying to offer ways to educate and involve students on campus to support the efforts of the contingent faculty. 

Read the full article from The Ithaca here.

Senior Peter Zibinski addresses reporters at an event held to
support the contingent faculty union outside of an event celebrating
the IC 20/20 on March 2. (Sam Fuller/The Ithaca)

Wednesday, March 22, 2017

Adjunct Faculty Member Uses AAUP Foundation Legal Defense Fund and Wins

Robin Meade, Adjunct Faculty member and Union President, wins battle over termination for criticizing Moraine Valley Community College administration.

Another Victory for Adjunct Rights

Academe Blog
By Robin Meade
March 14, 2017

I can't title this article "I Won" because I already used that title.  But now I have won a $125,000 settlement and a reinstatement after being fired for criticizing the administration of Moraine Valley Community College.

The fact that I keep winning in court should provide everyone with hope and embolden those in the struggle to continue to fight.  The AAUP has my eternal gratitude for providing me with support through a grant from the AAUP Foundation Legal Defense Fund and the support of Committee A here in Illinois.

Read the full Academe Blog post here.

How should universities handle disruptive conduct?

An Inside Higher Ed article highlights viewpoints on the University of Chicago's report regarding discipline for disruptive conduct.   AAUP Academe blog co-editor, John K. Wilson, is quoted.  Links to all materials below.

Dealing With Disrupters

Inside Higher Ed
By Colleen Flaherty
March 22, 2017

As obstructionist protests of controversial speakers spread, some say the future of the trend depends on how colleges and universities respond - namely what, if any, disciplinary action they take against participants.  But just what action to take, and when, is tricky business.  Practically it can mean sorting through the chaos that often surrounds such events to find specific perpetrators; politically, it can mean wading into murky waters.

The University of Chicago has some ideas on how to proceed.  

Read the full Inside Higher Ed article here.

The AAUP Academe Blog posted Disruptive Conduct and the University of Chicago on March 19, 2017. 

The University of Chicago's report of the Committee on University Discipline for Disruptive Conduct can be found here

New Report on Gender Pay Gap

As reported locally yesterday, a University of Oregon Professor is claiming pay discrimination.  A new report by The Chronicle of Higher Education on the U.S. Education Department's data is below.

Gender Pay Gap Persists Across Faculty Ranks

The Chronicle of Higher Education
By Joshua Hatch
March 22, 2017

Faculty salaries increased 2.8 percent in 2015 over the previous year, according to the latest U.S. Education Department data.

The data show women's salaries grew at a slightly higher rate - 3 percent - than men's, but not enough to begin closing the gender pay gap.

Read the full article at The Chronicle of Higher Education website here.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Foundation Grants for Faculty Under Attack

March 21, 2017

In keeping with its mission to support principles of academic freedom and the quality of higher education in a free and democratic society, the AAUP Foundation welcomes grant applications from faculty impacted by the Trump Administration’s travel ban or by other threats to academic freedom. The Foundation accepts grant applications on a quarterly basis. The 2017 deadlines for each quarter are March 31, June 30, September 30, and December 31. 
As the AAUP emphasized in a recent statement about the travel ban, the free movement of people and ideas is an important element of academic freedom. Stories of faculty from Muslim-dominant countries stranded abroad or detained inappropriately at US airports contribute to an increasing climate of Islamophobia. The polarization of civic dialogue since the 2016 election has a chilling effect on academic freedom, as faculty are increasingly vulnerable to efforts by state legislators and groups such as Turning Point USA, funders of the Professor Watchlist, to target faculty whose ideas and curricula they oppose. AAUP Foundation grants may be able to provide financial assistance to faculty under attack, whether they are pursuing litigation or require immediate aid in a crisis.
Legal Defense Fund grant recipient Robin Meade

Read the full article here.

Gorsuch Poses Threat to Civil Rights, Workers Rights

March 17, 2017

Judge Neil Gorsuch has been proclaimed a “natural successor” to former justice Antonin Scalia on the US Supreme Court, and, unfortunately, would likely continue Scalia’s work to dismantle many of the protections extended to workers, the public, minorities, and the disabled.

In contrast to most of his colleagues, Gorsuch has restricted the laws protecting workers and the public by narrowly interpreting such laws and by refusing to defer to agencies enforcing them. As a result, he has generally ruled in favor of employers and corporations.

Read the full article here.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Majority Vote for Graduate Union delayed by University- The Chronicle of Higher Education

With Trump Poised to Change the Legal Landscape, the Clock May Be Ticking on Graduate Unions

Ryan Flynn/New Haven Register via AP
When Columbia University graduate students went to the polls in December to decide whether to form a union, the landslide that ensued surprised even many activists.  Despite opposition by the administration, students voted by more than two to one to form a collective-bargaining unit.

More than three months later, however, they are no closer to a seat at the bargaining table. Read More

Friday, March 17, 2017

AAUP's Statement on the GOP Budget Proposal

No Surprise: "Skinny" Budget Undermines Science, Education, and the Public Good

President Trump released an initial budget proposal Thursday containing deep cuts that would severely damage scientific research, the arts and humanities, and access to higher education. 

Low-Income Students and Students of Color Lose Resources- The Chronicle for Higher Education

What Trump's Budget Outline Would Mean for Higher Ed

President Trump laid out the spending priorities for his administration on Thursday, releasing a budget "blueprint" that includes a $9-billion cut for the U.S. Department of Education, more than 13 percent, as well as decreases at several agencies that provide money for academic research, such as the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. The administration’s outline also calls for eliminating the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Read More

Cuts to the National Endowments Will Impact Campuses and More- The Chronicle for Higher Education

Why It Matters that Trump Wants to Kill the NEA and NEH

Portland Press Herald via Getty Images
The National Endowments for the Arts and the Humanities are no strangers to the political crosshairs. And it came as little surprise to many scholars that President Trump would propose to eliminate them in his first budget.
Still, the president’s plan is a stark statement of his values and, in it, campus and scholarly leaders see an attack on intellectual inquiry.
“This administration is saying we do not value the study and research in fields like history and literature,” says Rosemary G. Feal, executive director of the Modern Language Association. “We do not value the arts. We do not value educational opportunities for large swaths of Americans.”  Read More

Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Chronicle of Higher Education's Analysis of the future for the CFPB

An Uncertain Future for Higher Education’s Federal ‘Cop on the Beat’
MARCH 16, 2017 

Jim Watson/AFP/Getty Images

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is the federal agency that many Republicans, financial institutions, and for-profit colleges love to hate.

Just under seven years old, the bureau has already left its mark on broad swaths of higher education. It has uncovered abusive practices of student-loan-servicing companies; sued banks and for-profit colleges, accusing them of misrepresenting their student loans; created a complaint system for student borrowers that many consider a model for protecting consumer interests; and highlighted the often too-cozy business ties that colleges have in their deals with banks for student debit cards.
Through a flurry of reports, blog posts, enforcement actions, and lawsuits, the bureau has touched on programs and services that affect nearly every one of the 50 million Americans now holding a student loan or co-signing one, along with millions of others enrolled in college. While it’s impossible to deny the agency’s broad reach, it’s also not hard to find critics assailing it for overreach, sensationalism, and what one detractor calls an overreliance on "name-shaming press releases."  Read More