Carolyn McCue Goffman deposited Sending Canaries to the Job Market: Ethical Issues in Training Community College Faculty in the group HEP Part-Time and Contingent Faculty Issues on MLA Commons 5 years ago
This presentation explores ethical dilemmas for graduate school educators in programs that prepare M.A. students to teach English in community colleges. Such graduate programs attract students and produce strong, enthusiastic teachers, and university administrators value the programs because they draw tuition; however, the job prospects for graduates of the programs are less than rosy. This paper uses personal narratives, statistics, and anecdotal observations over a twelve-year period to assess the value of one such long-running program. What are our ethical obligations when training M.A. instructors to enter an exploitive job market? What is the relationship between a university department and area two-year colleges? How do graduates of our programs view their training and subsequent careers? The paper includes narratives of graduates of one such program, of whom a few have acquired full-time positions; some are working at multiple adjunct positions, hoping to gain a foothold in the profession; and others have simply abandoned a career in teaching.