I always start the rant for this. Then I remember all the schoolwork I have to do and put writing this rant to the side, but I need to rant about this– no matter how short it is. (How many times can I use “rant” in one paragraph?)
To start: I am very unhappy with my school, and it has nothing to do with my classes. Yeah, they’re very difficult and time consuming and not fun, but that’s college for you; that’s something I’ve dealt with and continue to deal with.
The reason I am unhappy with my school goes beyond the typical college student being stressed out about the academic curriculum a college student endures. I am upset because of the pay some of our teachers receive.
Yep. Teacher pay is the reasoning behind this rant.
It is no secret that teachers are under payed for their work, which is an issue that needs attention. Continually, a good portion of the teachers on my college campus get payed below the average pay of an elementary school teacher entering his/her first year.
At my university, this week was faculty and staff appreciation week. Something I learned this week is I should pay more attention to what is happening on campus. A couple of days ago, on Wednesday, April 10, there was a rally in our freedom of speech area on campus for adjunct professors, and I found out about it the day after. I wish I would’ve known about it because I would’ve been there.
When I found out about the rally, I found out why the rally was held, which lit a passionate fire in me. Forty percent of the teachers on my university’s campus are adjunct professors. To better understand where they stand, they’re like the part-time employees at a retail job instead of the full-time employees. Hope that makes sense.
Anyway, the adjunct professors at my school only make $600 per credit hour taught. Let’s use an example to show how low that is. If there is a professor at my school that teaches a class worth three credit hours, that teacher gets paid $1800 PER SEMESTER.
When I found out how much the adjunct professors get paid, I was beyond livid. Among many other things, the low salary of teachers is something I’ve been very passionate about and have had a dream of fixing. Well, finding out this information lit something in me that’s making me want to work towards that dream right now– starting with my university.
Upon finding out this news, I learned of an adjunct teacher on my campus who doesn’t have any other job. This is it for him, and he makes a maximum of $15,000 a year (!!!!!!!). There are literally times when this man doesn’t even know if he’ll have enough to get gas to make it to campus. Hearing his story and how there are many other teachers on my campus just like him, makes me super upset.
You want to know what makes it worse?
Student tuition is being raised, and our president’s salary is being raised (by a lot) as a part of the five-year contract he just signed. Do I think there is a correlation? Kinda. The base salary for adjunct professors hasn’t been raised in twenty-one years. We have two multi-million dollar construction projects happening on campus. We can afford these construction projects (one of which could have waited), raise student tuition, and raise the pay of our president (who could be leaving, might I add), but we can’t afford to raise the pay of our adjunct professors? That sickens me.
Needless to say, I’m extremely unhappy with my school, and I want to do something to help the adjunct professors out on campus. I for sure have joined the fight for the university to raise their pay, but I want to give them something.
I have contemplated creating a t-shirt that says “Adjuncts are Adjacent,” which is essentially meant to say the adjunct teachers are the same as the regular/tenure professors. They all do the same thing and are present for the students; the only difference between the two are the amount of classes each one teaches.
What do you think? Do you have any suggestions for how I could help out the adjunct professors on my campus? Any and all suggestions are welcome.
This is just the beginning of the fight.