1975: Part-Timers: ‘Marginal, Expendable, Underprivileged, Underpaid’

February 07, 2016

50 Years of Covers

In November 2016, The Chronicle of Higher Education will mark its 50th anniversary. To lead up to the occasion, we’ve chosen front pages featuring some of our reporting on key events in higher education and capturing the zeitgeist of the nation’s colleges and universities over the years.

View the full collection.

Was there ever a time when part-time faculty members, now known as adjuncts, could be assured of a decent living? In 1975 they were expressing the same concerns as they are today. “The conditions under which the part-time instructor works are discouraging even to the most dedicated,” said a lecturer in English at the University of Pittsburgh. What’s more, another part-timer said, “The tenured faculty are hardly civil, let alone friendly.” Part-timers, we reported, “are organizing to push for higher pay and changes in what many describe as almost feudal working conditions.” Four decades later, little has changed.