Recommendations for College Presidents

WalSmart U 8-RCBby Extraneous Adjunct and Colleagues

Or, things we’d like Badmin to experience, just so they know what it’s like.

Note: If you, as president, are unaware of and/or unsympathetic to the difficulties the majority of your faculty face in carrying out the mission of the college (which it is your job to support and further), you are unfit to hold your office.

Every College President Should Experience Adjunct Monetary Problems

  • Live only on food stamps for one month of every year. No sneaking into any campus parties and raiding the snack tray either!
    • It’s okay if they sneak into parties, etc. for food, provided someone is there to record it and post a video of a college president sneaking snacks into his/her pockets.
    • Also, at the party, at least 3 people have to ask them what they’re doing there since “only faculty” were invited.
    • They may visit the campus food pantry.
  • Have their paycheck come in late twice a year, so they can understand what so many adjuncts experience on a routine basis.
    • No dipping into savings to survive, either, since adjuncts have no savings.
  • PrintAlso, if they are ill, no fair using insurance that the adjunct would not have. So if it’s life-threatening, hmmm, Margaret Mary says, “Hello, welcome to my nightmare.”
    • If a member of the family is ill, same thing. Get a glimpse of what it feels like to not be able to help your loved ones, even though you have done all the right things—got a good education, are a model employee…. You might as well have not bothered with the perks and benefits that admin says you are worth. And if you don’t like it, why don’t you leave?
    • You could call this experiment The Lord of the Fries since so many adjuncts work fast food or might as well with the pay they get—and these particular adjuncts will be stranded, like we are and remain, on OUR island. Ironically, it is not OUR savagery that they will have to survive but one of their own making.
  • Be required to use personal laptops to connect to the classroom projectors since there are no podium PCs available. Oh and if they have a Mac they need to also carry the adapter.
    • An adapter which they have to pay for, out of pocket, because the institution’s FT faculty all have PCs and have no idea why the department would need to buy an adapter.
  • Have to use their personal cell phone to conduct all business.
    • Be sure to charge for that from the limited cash they are allowed during the time frame so the experience mimics reality. So less for food/gas/etc.
  • Pay $50-$75 monthly for wireless internet access at home so they can respond within 24 hours to all student emails and discussion threads for their online course. An online course for which they are paid no more per credit hour than a regular course, and for which they must sign a contract waiver allowing the institution to retain rights to the course shell. Meaning the institution can replace them at any time with younger, less expensive, or even robot instructors/presidents.
  • Be required to tote around their food and drinks (with igloo ice) for the day since they have no private offices with refrigerators.
  • They must take in at least one roommate for the first year.

Presidents Should have to Experience Life in the Academic Trenches

  • When Penguins flyWork in the tutoring center one day a month so they will know what the students actually are thinking.
  • Presidents and administrators should have to teach one course a semester, and one of the two courses per year needs to be an intro course, so they keep thinking of students as people and faculty as colleagues.
    • or developmental, since they like to complain about retention, or
    • Teach 6 different classes on 4 campuses and spend most of each day driving between them toting everything they need to teach, or
    • Teach an intro course of 100 students each year… without a TA,
      • Preferably in a small classroom with old brown chalkboards, no projector or computer and four desks too few for the students because they lost the equipped classroom they requested months ago to a full-timer whose schedule changed.
    • Or, prep a totally new course only to have it cancelled the day before it’s scheduled to start… without getting paid.
  • Teach in a room where the technology doesn’t work when no one answers the Help Desk phone.
  • Teach an 8:30 am class and pick up copies on their way to class when the copy center opens at 8:30, but the only person who opens the copy center isn’t around. So they’re late for their own class, and then have to teach without their copies.
    • Or pay the student rate of $0.30/page to print the original to make copies from because their home printer is out of ink. But, oh yeah, they need to load in increments of $5.00 to be able to print, so they will perpetually have $4.70 available to print still! Woohoo!
    • Or not be given the code needed to print on campus, so everything must be printed at home.
  • They should have to haul all of their office supplies to work every day and have no secretarial help or support, and be locked out of their offices.
    • And be locked out of their offices and have a 7:30 or 8 am class—so NO ONE is around to help open it up. And if lucky enough to have access to a phone, it’s in the office.
  • They should not be able to reserve a computer lab for their students to work on their research projects, so just have them bring in their personal work to the classroom, but discover the campus wi-fi doesn’t work in their assigned classroom. So they will provide students with access via their own personal hot spot device for internet access on student work days, since cancelling class is not allowed.
  • Explain again to a class of 50+ why there are no comments on their papers (just a rubric attached with numbers circled) because even that took more than 30 hours of time for which they are not compensated. And try to stifle the fact that they are ticked off that they spent that much time on the grading, because they could have been working those 30 hours at a second job, which pays an hourly wage and has (some) benefits, unlike indentured servitude as a part-time instructor. (See Adjunct Monetary Problems, above.)
  • They should have to hold student meetings at the local coffee shop, campus food court, or library.
    • And then get shushed by students for holding conferences in the library despite reserving space with the sympathetic librarians.
    • And be told they MUST hold (uncompensated) office hours.
  • Have BlackBoard update their servers on Sundays—which is deadline day for most online courses—and so commence the blowing up of their email accounts from anxious students on the one weekend day they  decide to take off.

Presidents Should be Required to Experience the Humiliations of Academic Vagabondage

  • The chancellors should refer to presidents as an “administrative vagabond.”

    Adjunct Administrators' Office

    Adjunct Administrators’ Office

  • Presidents should have to submit to the tyranny, incompetence, and ill-humor of at least one imperious and indifferent administrator.
  • Presidents should be forced to attend meetings where they are completely ignored, and be made to come into those meetings on their days off.
    • Or be forbidden from attending meetings and thus have no access to the decision-making processes that directly impact their livelihood.
      • Maybe they could stand beside the closed door—in case they are needed in the meeting.
  • They should hold a single seat representing administration, amidst a proportional shared governance body in which adjuncts hold seats reflecting their numbers—double that of full-timers.
  • They each have to explain over and over—No, I HAVE a terminal degree. YES, I am still an adjunct.
    • Especially when applying for housing or a new emergency credit card to pay for gas to travel from school to school or for food because the creditors can’t verify your income because of the college pay schedule  (see Adjunct Monetary Problems, above).
  • Presidents should also be required to run into their students at inopportune times, such as while in line at Job and Family Services or at the local Free Medical Clinic.
    • Or working as a waiter/waitress on off-hours.
    • Or while dumpster diving! (see Adjunct Monetary Problems, above)
  • They should talk to the larger public about a living wage and health insurance, only to be called a “free-loading libtards” who should get a “real job.”
    • They each should definitely write a blog piece/letter to the editor/article that gets trolled by all the higher ed elite and libertarians.
    • With lots of nasty, insulting memes. because—tenure.
  • The presidents must experience chronic lack of eye contact from admins and FT faculty—to the extent that they begin to question their existence.
    • And must be interrupted when in an actual discussion as if they aren’t even in the room.
  • They should not be allowed to park on campus until they finally do get paid and are “in the system.”
    • But, of course, they must pay to park, and receive a parking pass from an office that is only open 8:00 – 3:00 despite teaching a night class that runs from 7:00 – 10:00 pm.
    • Eliminate the faculty-only parking and combine it with commuter parking, so they have to arrive 30 minutes early to find a place to park.
      • Wait, since when are adjuncts allowed to have cars?
  •  Share an office with 30+ other people that has two ancient computers, one of which no longer can interface with the network, or without a dedicated desk, phone line, or computer and have a maximum of 36 cubic feet to store their stuff.
    • What office? Who gets offices? Make them work from home!
    • Or from the above-mentioned vehicle.
  • When public transit isn’t operating, accommodate students who can’t attend—but when presidents’ cars break down they must take public transit to get there no matter what (even if public transit isn’t accessible in their neighborhoods)
    • Be asked, “Why didn’t you call a cab?” (when they don’t run in suburbia and there’s a huge fee to call one out).
    • Or get to the campus by public transportation—and fight to get a seat on the shuttle (yellow school) bus which runs every half hour!
  • Not be trusted enough to be given a key to to their own classrooms.
  • Have to use their own private cell phone to get security to come open their classroom.

No One’s Brought Up the guillotine?

  • Have to reapply for their job every year, or even semester.Student Reviews-RCB
    • Since it’s a limited “engagement,” to make it real, reapply every other day.
    • And—hey, the paperwork will get lost, too.
  • Have them see the first two emails about adjunct hiring and votes when they are the only one in the department. Then see who responds publicly and know that some comments are “off channel” and directly about them.
  • Have them get pregnant and have to hide it so they don’t get removed from consideration from the next term’s hiring.
    • Or ask them to cover for an adjunct colleague who calls from delivery to tell them that she has all final exams ready for them in a drawer.
  • Perhaps, also, be on notice of a possible cancellation of their  positions up to the day before the first day of the semester
  • Have them go to their union only to be told the contract doesn’t really cover someone in their situation. Even though it’s horribly unfair, there’s not a thing that can be done.
    • And be rejected for partial unemployment when classes get cancelled last minute because of the education clause.
  • The president should have No guarantee of work in the summer. Except for like maybe 10% of college presidents—selected by the most arbitrary and capricious of methods.
    • Or  if they get a job lined up, and a day or two before the course is scheduled to begin, the university offers them the same job for 1/2 the pay due to “low enrollment”—and if they accept the contract reduction, but enrollment goes back up, they are NOT reimbursed for the originally agreed-upon figure.
  • Also: give the presidents a work schedule and pay timeline, then change it 4 or 5 times and at the last possible moment before the semester starts. Then make them teach several classes, even though the books for those classes won’t arrive for several weeks because the instructors were changed at the last minute.
    • Maybe the presidents should also work 2 bartending or serving jobs on top of teaching at several different campuses, so they have no time to do any research to help get a full-time job.
  • If the presidents do force their way into your office (Chair or Dean) to make an absurd request (food, more work, etc), praise their efforts profusely, but tell them that higher-ups (who they do not know and will never meet—make up some names and give them authoritative titles) won’t approve it because “it’s unfair to others” and—laugh as you pull this chestnut out—”budget cuts.”
  • After “our administrators” have worked 6 or 7 semesters, “give” them a two-year temporary fulltime appointment—for which they must work an extra 10%—and assign them to launch a new mentorship program for new adjuncts. As the two-year appointment draws to a close, “our administrator” will be shadowed by a full-time faculty member who, along with other full-timers higher up the food chain, will go on to win a prestigious national award for the program the President started. They will hear about the award in the department newsletter!
    • No golden parachutes or awards of tenure when there’s “no work for them this semester” either.
  • Three days before the semester starts, email the presidents informing them that their services are no longer required, as their positions were absorbed by tenured faculty members. Note that you will keep their information on file if you have need for their services in the future. Be sure to spell their names name wrong in the emails.
    • After enduring a 3-hour panel interview that took place on their schedules on less than 48 hours notice where they then waited 2+ weeks to hear that they got the position in the first place,
    • Offer them a position only after completing an unnecessary 5-week course for no pay on how to teach online.
    • And then write them up if they miss a late submission assignment while grading because they are not current, even though students are given 2 weeks to submit work after deadline.
  • Or  fire them and have campus thugs  police, allow them to get one cardboard box of personal items and escort them promptly from the property.
    • Or at least witness it happening to a colleague so they’ll be sure to be very careful and very quiet.

 

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