This is the discussion area for the HEP Part-Time and Contingent Faculty Issues forum. Please feel free to join, post calls for papers, new initiatives for Part-time Faculty activism, and questions about contingency and pedagogy to the group!

Executive Committee:

Maria Maisto, Past Chair Jan. 2017
Lee Skallerup Bessette, Chair, Jan. 2018
Virginia Cooper, Secretary, Jan. 2019
Maria Grewe, Jan 2020
Robin Sowards, Jan 2021

From Candidate Maria Shine Stewart

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    Maria Shine Stewart

    I first observed the starkly different working conditions of full-time and part-time faculty as an English department secretary many years ago. Fast forward 35 years: Too little has changed at too few institutions for larger and larger numbers of adjunct, non-tenure-track, term, or contingent faculty. I teach at up to four northeast Ohio colleges and universities concurrently. Yes, I am a capable teacher. No, I did not expect to remain adjunct so long.

    In my earlier service on MLA’s CLIP committee (Committee for Contingent Labor in the Profession, 2011-2014), I learned of enlightened practices and expectations in select spots around the country. I learned that it is possible for adjunct and tenured faculty to work shoulder to shoulder. I learned that more than a symbolic olive branch blooms when teachers view one another as mutual helpers of others, not competitors for budget or prestige. On that committee, I collaborated with adjunct and tenured members to listen to contingent faculty from across the country, even the world, at convention breakfasts, panels, and other venues.

    I have skills in writing and in counseling as well as teaching; using all my capabilities – and collaborating with others — I hope to sow seeds to create a better world for colleagues of the future.

    If elected, I plan to continue to reach out to fellow scholars and teachers with a three-pronged approach.

    1. Giving steady attention to adjunct stories and labor conditions – best practices, worst ones, and getting there.
    2. Putting a spotlight on intelligent integration of adjuncts into college and university life and vehicles for lifelong learning.
    3. Providing a forum for voices, long suppressed, of adjuncts leaving the profession in tandem with newbies entering.

    To adapt a wise saying: If we cannot speak up for ourselves at MLA, then where? And if not now, when?


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