Campus Equity Week is designed to draw attention to working conditions of faculty--the vast majority of whom are now in insecure part- and full-time non-tenure track jobs, often subject to exploitative employment conditions. Actions can be as small or large as your capacity--from posting fliers or writing letters to organizing a symposium or demonstration. You may also want to join in with existing Occupy Wall Street actions--just create signs or other materials highlighting the situation in higher education. See below for more ideas.
Campus Equity Week (known as Fair Employment Week in some states and in Canada) occurs biennially; the next one will be held October 22-26, 2012. During the week, faculty activists across the United States and Canada don costumes, participate in hearings on university employment practices, give awards to adjunct faculty, and host film screenings. Faculty design activities that best suit their local conditions, so goals and activities vary. Events are designed to put contingent faculty in touch with one another, support statewide legislation, inform campus communities about the exploitation of contingent faculty, or achieve specific change on campus.
The AAUP is a cosponsor of Campus Equity Week.
Campus Equity Week Resources
These documents are designed for you to download and adapt to your situation, adding local content and deleting parts that do not apply. You can use them during Campus Equity Week or any time they may be useful.
Books about Contingent Faculty (Word Doc). (Serves as a useful list of recommend books on the topic. Presented in large-type so you can print these out as posters for your library or other areas where people may be interested in reading more about contingency)
Sample Media Advisory(Word doc) (send before your event if you want media to attend)
Sample press release (Word doc) (send after your event to let media know what happened)
Sample op-ed on part-time faculty (Word doc)
Sample op-ed on contingent faculty generally (Word doc) (including full-time non-tenure-track)
Sample faculty senate resolution (Word doc)
Sample petition (Word doc)
Trends in Faculty Status, 1975-2009 (.pdf), a bar chart showing the dramatic growth in contingent positions
Petition (Word doc) supporting contingent faculty
Tips on Starting Campus Coalitions
Media Communications Tips
Examples of Materials from our Chapters and Affiliates
CEW Sample Leaflet and Sample Petition from United University Professions (SUNY)
Past Campus Equity Weeks
Information received about past events has included:
University of West Florida Department of English
On Friday, November 2, 2011 the department will hosted four screenings of two films, a Simple Matter of Justice and Degrees of Shame. Screenings were followed by discussions and, in some cases, presentations by guest speakers.
Rochester Institute of Technology AAUP Chapter
The chapter contacted all RIT adjuncts to invite them to a get-together; partially subsidized first-year dues for adjuncts who are not yet AAUP members and expressed interest in joining; and encouraged and supported the formation of an adjunct coalition within the chapter. The chapter also proposed that adjuncts ask for a representative seat on the Institute Academic Senate.
Rutgers Council of AAUP Chapters
Campus Equity Week activities centered around a petition drive that went on all semester. The petition linked the conditions of contingent faculty with access to quality undergraduate education. The council developed a list of home addresses so it can broaden its outreach on these issues to include parents. It focused on first and second year students being taught by contingent faculty. It will sent the petition to members of the state PTA, the state student council (high school student leaders), and members of the legislature. See the draft petition.
AAUP Maryland Conference
The conference's fall meeting, titled "Realities on American Campuses," was held Saturday, November 3, and included a discussion of contingent faculty issues and a showing and discussion of the documentary Degrees of Shame.
Central Connecticut State University AAUP Chapter
On October 27, the chapter hosted a Campus Equity Week forum, "Equity Through Unity." The keynote speaker and workshop facilitator was Rich Moser, senior staff representative at the Rutgers Council of the AAUP Chapters and former national AAUP staff member.
On November 1, the chapter hosted Joe Berry, author of the contingent faculty organizing guide Reclaiming the Ivory Tower. Berry discussed his book, changes in higher education, and the purpose of Campus Equity Week and its meaning to the university as a whole.
SUNY Cortland Chapter
On November 1, the chapter hosted a forum, under the banner “I Teach New York,” to discuss SUNY’s reliance on part-time faculty. The forum included a panel of community leaders who heard testimony from Cortland faculty and students.
Western Michigan University AAUP Chapter
The chapter distributed “Equity for Contingent Faculty” buttons to members and ghost pins for part-time faculty to wear during Campus Equity Week. It hosted four showings of Simple Matter of Justice and Degrees of Shame during the week, each of which was followed up by a discussion session primarily focusing on issues faced by and contractual concerns of contingent faculty. The chapter also worked on a letter writing campaign.
Colorado State University-Pueblo AAUP Chapter
The chapter conducted a survey of department chairs and adjunct faculty about the state of adjunct faculty on campus. How many are there? How many courses do they teach? How do they survive on those terrible wages? The chapter scheduled a meeting with the provost during Campus Equity Week to talk about the situation and present him with the data.
Saint Joseph's University AAUP Chapter
The chapter conducted an extensive survey of contingent faculty, kicking off during Campus Equity Week. The data will inform the chapter's advocacy for contingent faculty. The chapter asked the campus chapter of Students for Workers' Rights to take on the issue of faculty equity as an item for investigation and advocacy; SWR plans to issue a statement on the topic. In addition, the chapter has been in touch with a reporter on the student paper about doing some work on contingent faculty for the issue of the paper that comes out during equity week.
University of Hartford AAUP Chapter
On November 1, the chapter, in collaboration with the Campus Progressive Alliance, sponsored an open forum at which adjunct faculty were invited to share their concerns—compliments, complaints, or anything in between. The goal was to give all faculty a better understanding of the conditions and aspirations of contingent faculty at the university.
Results of a survey of part-time faculty were presented to the campus community during Campus Equity Week. The survey, which covers both demographic information (who are the part-time faculty at Fairfield?) and questions relating to professional needs and the functions that a coordinator of part-time faculty concerns might serve was sent over the summer to approximately 280 part-time faculty members; 170 completed and returned the survey. The survey is part of a project led by faculty member Ruth Anne Baumgartner that is researching ways to improve the professional lives of part-time faculty at the university.
For more information on past Campus Equity Weeks, visit www.campusequityweek.org.