Comment | Underpaid, or unpaid, college faculty

To the editor:

Again, “Assistance is needed: Adjunct professor, must have a doctorate. Salary: $ 0 ”(Newsletter, April 8):

The exploitation of the affiliated faculty is extremely immoral. Worse, many humanities Ph.D. Programs discourage students from pursuing careers outside the academy. This is a problem as many applicants do not have adequate academic jobs.

After I got my PhD. In American Studies, I worked as a professional lecturer (supplement), working full time and earning thousands of dollars a semester. Teaching on top of a full time job was very demanding, but I can’t say it was exploitative. This setting allowed me to tap into everything I liked about teaching without having to worry about paying bills.

The solution is for universities to stop recruiting and create more full-time academic posts. In fact, it will not happen. Therefore, I encourage more PhDs to explore careers in industry, government and non-profit organizations. I’m very fortunate to be able to work in a way that makes non – profit academic debates accessible and relevant to a wider audience.

Sometimes, when I have the time and inclination, I can spend a semester teaching students the same skills.

Kimberly Probolus
Washington

To the editor:

As an academic, I am not surprised to hear about the exploitation of faculties going on across colleges and universities, and it is not limited to the contingent faculty. In fact, even professors who are hired to a tenure-track position are paid very little in terms of their level of education.

According to The Chronicle of Higher Education, the average salary of a professor (assistant, associate, full) for the 2018-19 academic year is $ 77,600, $ 91,876 and $ 136,767 for four years at private colleges, respectively. As for public colleges, it is almost identical and slightly higher for research institutes.

Similarly, we have nowhere near what other highly educated professionals (physicians, lawyers, etc.) or university / college administrators earn. Also, do not forget that faculty members are often in their 40s when they become full professors.

Finally, the regime is under severe threat from the rulers and right-wing politicians. Faculties are always fighting for good living wages and benefits and to protect their academic independence.

Michael Hajiargiro
Centerport, NY
The author is Professor of Biological and Chemical Sciences at the New York Institute of Technology.

To the editor:

The main problem in exploiting the affiliated faculties is the appointment of administrators. This swell, which is stealing a significant amount of a university budget, is affecting many campuses (public or private) across the country. As the bureaucratic apparatus of a university administration becomes increasingly burdensome, it tends to cut monetary value at the expense of faculty and students.

The generalization of zero-pay teaching positions is nothing more than an extreme and unscrupulous way of robbing professors out of paying administrators, some of whom hold unnecessary offices.

Dan Pane
The angels

To the editor:

He holds a Ph.D., a Distinguished Professor of Statistics from the MIT Sloan School of Management. A student is someone who gives up current income in order to give up future income. Sadly, those humorous words of wisdom were never more accurate.

Paul Greenberg
Brookline, Mass.

To the editor:

Didier Fassin writes, “Emmanuel Macron is playing a dangerous game” (guest talk, nytimes.com, April 9):

Mr Fassin accused President Emmanuel Macron of “deepening inequality, reducing the welfare state and weakening democracy” through “neoliberalism and dictatorship”.

These are bold allegations. Especially as a true dictator – Vladimir Putin – is fighting against democracy at the doorstep of Europe. Especially since Mr. Macron will face the Kremlin apologist and ally Marine Le Pen in the second round of the presidential election on April 24.

Under President Macron, France overcame the impact of decades of popular unemployment. Unemployment rate is the lowest since 2008. At the beginning of 2022, youth unemployment was at a 40-year low. He dealt with pandemics in the areas of public health and economics, saving lives and livelihoods.

Of course, more needs to be done. France is divided and needs to line up behind a visionary and optimistic vision: to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, fight discrimination and inequality, improve social services and reach full employment.

The most dangerous game is to underestimate the fundamental and existential differences between Mr. Macron, the pro-EU liberal reformer, and Miss Le Pen, the far-right nationalist.

Roland Lescuure
Paris
The author is a member of the French National Assembly, which represents French citizens in North America, and a spokeswoman for President Macron’s party, La Repubblica en Marche.

To the editor:

Again, “Yelp will pay for workers’ travel for abortion access” (Business, April 13):

While working in a state where abortion is regulated, it is commendable that companies like Yelp are stepping in to help their female employees who go out of state to perform abortions, but this is not the answer.

No employee should involve the employer in this decision. This is a personal decision and should not be “forgiven” by an employer. A great alternative is for companies not to do business in states that discriminate against any of their employees, be it abortion access or anything else.

Employers have some influence here. Use.

Daphne Phillipson
New York

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