It is the season again for adjunct rehiring. We have two classes: those who are continuing, "through the eye," who've taught for at least 6 years and been through a comprehensive merit review (you would think this equaled tenure. It does not)...and the ones who are pre-six, who must apply for their jobs on a yearly basis. The last couple years, those folks have gotten their reappointment letters by June 1.
Not so this year! Which means there are some people freaking out that they won't have a paycheck starting in July. This is a legit fear. I once worked for a month out of contract (editing the student guide to writing, its own nightmare) when I was pre-six. The budget is there, as I understand it; this isn't a recession year, there's money. But clearly, something is up.
I am safe, but Nous is not. Neither are many of our friends. We have a strong union, and it's in bargaining talks this year, so... I don't know. This is exactly the kind of shit the union hates.
I was talking to a friend this weekend, at T's retirement party--a friend who used to be a PhD student here, who got her degree and fled. Anyway, we were playing 'oh hey, catch me up on your life in the last four years' and I said something about 'the good tenured faculty.' She said 'like who?' very seriously. Well, besides the spouse(s) of adjuncts... I can name a few folks who nod and smile when we pass in the hallway. I guess I equate basic decency with being one of the good ones. But seriously, there are plenty of faculty who won't acknowledge you at all. A simple hello is a small victory.
So until we hear something concrete, I guess we wait, and put off any major spending as long as we can. THIS is why we can't have nice things, people. This, right here.