The AAUP Turns 100

By Michael Ferguson

This issue marks the start of the hundredth volume of Academe and the beginning of the AAUP’s centennial celebration. Over the next two years, the Association will celebrate a century of academic freedom through a series of activities that will culminate at the 2015 annual meeting in Washington, DC.

The AAUP Foundation’s Centennial Committee—which is chaired by Susan Michalczyk (Boston College), second vice president of the AAUP and head of the AAUP Foundation, and also includes Frank Haig, SJ (Loyola University Maryland) and Tina Kelleher (Towson University)—is planning activities and projects to celebrate the past, present, and future of the Association. “The focus is on producing a narrative of the AAUP’s crucial role in American higher education,” said Michalczyk.

The Foundation is funding the Centennial Interview Project, a series of interviews and testimonials about the AAUP’s history and its current activities. Video segments from this ongoing project will be posted throughout the year at http://www.aaupfoundation.org/centennial/interview-project. “The interviews with our members offer opportunities not only to reflect on the value of the Association’s principles from historical and personal perspectives but also to envision the possibilities for the AAUP’s future,” Michalczyk said.

The Foundation is also sponsoring a centennial essay and art contest for undergraduates and graduate students (see below) and other events. Contact Susan Michalczyk at michalcz@bc.edu if you have ideas or suggestions about the centennial celebration.

The Association itself will mark the centennial through publications that highlight its historical role in establishing the principles and standards that govern the academic profession. A centennial edition of the Redbook is planned (see below), and Academe will devote special issues to the past and future of the AAUP.

Chapters and conferences can contribute to the centennial effort by sharing their history and hosting centennial events. Promotional materials designed to help chapters and conferences plan centennial-themed membership drives, colloquia, and other activities will be available on the AAUP’s website in summer 2014.

Centennial Redbook

At its November 2013 meeting, the AAUP’s Council approved the contents of the eleventh edition of AAUP Policy Documents and Reports (better known as the Redbook), which will be published to coincide with the AAUP’s centennial. Hans-Joerg Tiede, professor at Illinois Wesleyan University and a member of Committee A on Academic Freedom and Tenure, is serving as editor of the centennial edition of the Redbook.

The Redbook collects the AAUP’s major policy documents in a single volume. The Association has issued numerous reports and statements since the publication of the tenth edition in 2006, and the forthcoming edition will feature the most important of these recent documents as well as updated versions of existing policy documents, such as the 2013 revision of the Recommended Institutional Regulations on Academic Freedom and Tenure.

Centennial Contest

As part of the centennial celebration, the AAUP Foundation is sponsoring four student contests on the theme of academic freedom: two essay contests, one for undergraduates and one for graduate students, as well as separate art contests for undergraduates and graduate students. Winners in each category will receive a $1,000 prize. The centennial contest is made possible by a grant from Patricia Fox Haig, widow of one time US secretary of state Alexander Meigs Haig Jr.

AAUP members can help the Foundation publicize the competition by announcing it on their campuses and by discussing academic freedom with their students. Visit http://www.aaupfoundation.org/file/centennial-contest to download a printable flyer about the contest.

Student essay submissions must be five double-spaced pages in length and should focus on some aspect of the concept or history of academic freedom; artwork should creatively interpret or illustrate academic freedom. Submissions should be sent to centennialcontest@aaupfoundation.org by January 15, 2015. Full contest rules are available on the AAUP Foundation’s website at http://www.aaupfoundation.org/centennial/contest.

Do You Have AAUP Memorabilia?

The AAUP’s national office is collecting notable memorabilia from AAUP members, chapters, and conferences for use in the centennial celebration. If you have photographs, an archive of chapter or conference publications, or other items of historical interest, we’d welcome hearing from you: send a description of your memorabilia to centennial@aaup.org. Selected items will be displayed at AAUP events and incorporated into centennial publications.

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