Thursday, May 19, 2016


The future is coming to Northern Kentucky University.

The flava:
"Six of those faculty positions are currently filled, but are on the non-tenure/tenure track and will be cut next year. Those employees will still be teaching this academic year, but their contracts will not be renewed.

The cuts will bring the total number of faculty down 6 percent to 550 positions. The positions were drawn from all six colleges and the currently filled positions were selected by chairs, deans and the provost because they can be replaced with 'capable and qualified' adjuncts."

-- Agnes of Dog


  1. Yep. What do you bet that they're hoping at least some of those "capable and qualified" adjuncts will be their own experienced full-time untenured/non-tenure track faculty, returned in another guise? If that's the case, I very much hope those former employees will say "no; I can't afford to work for that compensation."

    I also rather hope the rest of the adjunct pool is a bit less deep than they projected, except of course the people who will really suffer in that case are the students who can't get courses they need, and/or the faculty who will end up with overloads/raised course caps.

    Maybe the deans and the provost could take on an (additional) section or two themselves (at no additional compensation, of course -- times are tough), just to show they're part of the team and all that?

    1. Ooh, I love the idea of having the deans and provost take one for the team. But we know that won't happen....

  2. And I just love the ending:

    Despite the circumstances, Smith is optimistic about the future of the university.

    He said Mearns and his administration haven't avoided making the necessary difficult choices and are taking a strategic, long-term approach to this university's fiscal health.

    "Our overall financial position is strong because we have managed our resources prudently and haven't had to borrow against our future," Smith said. "In fact, we continue to invest in our future. The quality of our academic programs has never been stronger. We will continue to innovate and thrive."

    Because innovation, thriving, and high-quality academic programs aren't in any way connected to having experienced, decently-compensated faculty with an ongoing tie to the university.

    I also think the reporter (local or AP, which "contributed") could have done a better job of covering the story. The story, such as it is, appears to be written straight from a university press release, with no attempt to gather faculty, student, or staff, let alone community, perspectives.

    Comments seem to be mostly the standard lib/conservative back and forth, with a side of comments about state tourism board funding for the Ark (creation museum, I'm pretty sure).

    My ancestors lived in this part of the country, a century+ ago. I don't think they'd be pleased (well, to be honest, they might not object to the Ark, and they might be surprised/dismayed by just how far this desegregation/equal rights business has gone, but time marches on).

    1. Agreed on the crappy reporting. It's as if they just took what the university had to say wholesale.
      I'm originally from this neck of the woods, and doubt I will ever go back, especially with this stuff *and* the creation museum.

  3. Giving those lecturers a terminal year is very generous (by this era's debased standards at least).

    Depending upon what happens (or not) in the state legislature, there is a small but nonzero chance that I could be getting similar news in a month or two...


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