NEXT MEETING: February 28, 3:30-4:30, Tribble A108
- Approval of minutes of November, 2018 meeting.
- Update on WFU and College non-TT faculty salaries.
- Taking stock of WFU AAUP: where are we on the survey results, salaries, governance, and solidarity across ranks? Where do we go from here?
- New Business.
Towards Fair Salaries for All Faculty
WFU AAUP is following up on the motions passed in the College Faculty and Senate last year to raise faculty salaries at all ranks, but especially among the ranks of Associate, Assistant and Teaching Professors.
Faculty Members at WFU largely perceive that they are being underpaid, and the data bear that out.
In 2017-18, the mean of Professors’ salaries at the nine traditional cross-admit institutions is $165,700. WFU’s (Reynolda Campus) Professor salary is $151,700. The mean of the cross-admits’ Associate Professor salaries is $113,200; $101,900 at WFU. The mean of the cross-admits’ Assistant Professor salaries is $93,800; $76,200 at WFU;
According to the Office of Institutional Research, in the College and Graduate School of A&S only, the number of “Instructors,” a category that includes Teaching Professionals, Professors of the Practice and Visiting Faculty, grew from 115 in 2017-18 to 136 in 2018-19. The mean Instructor salary was $62,195 in 2017-18 and $61,128 in 2018-19. The mean salary of the 95 faculty who continued in their position in both years was $63,603 in 2017-18 and $65,621 in 2018-19, an increase of 3.20%. The inflation rate from July 2017 to July 2018 was 2.95%, virtually negating any salary increase for those continuing faculty.
The WFU AAUP Faculty Financial Situation and Morale Survey, which polled 556 College faculty members (392 of whom responded, a 71% response rate), revealed that two out of three survey respondents teach Summer School out of economic need. Student debt levels among incoming faculty — especially Teaching Professors and Assistant Professors — have increased substantially in recent years. Nearly 60% found that their monthly pay increases lagged behind their monthly repayment obligations.
According to the data in WFU Salary Growth Relative to Tuition Increases, a table available at wfuaaup.org, from 2002-2018 the cumulative percentage difference between increases in the faculty salary pool and increases in undergraduate tuition and fees is 23.3%. If salary increases had tracked tuition increases, salaries would be 23.3% higher than they are now.
Join WFU AAUP in seeking a commitment from the administration to raise the salary pool significantly and allocate it equitably among the faculty. There is strength in numbers.
Food for Thought
Academic Freedom and the Scope of Protections for Extramural Speech (excerpt)
by Keith E. Whittington, Princeton University
It is important that colleges and universities act to protect the rights of faculty members to speak out about matters of public concern even when their views are controversial, but we need a better explanation of why that should be so. No doubt professors sometimes behave irresponsibly in public or voice ill-considered, mistaken, or even disgusting opinions. Nonetheless, institutions of higher education would be worse off if they regularly sought to censor such speech by members of the faculty. It is no easy task to explain to skeptical students, parents, alumni, and donors why that might be true, however. Certainly, it is not obvious why the vital interest of the university in fostering high-quality teaching and scholarship is enhanced when professors get into heated political arguments with members of the general public on social media. I believe that colleges and universities need to protect such speech not because it is central to academic freedom as such but because failing to protect the right of faculty members to say controversial things in public will tend to undermine the freedom for scholarship and teaching that we most value. An institution’s brand should take account of the fact that colleges and universities are places where people voice controversial ideas, where competing ideas are welcome, and where ideas can be fearlessly debated, defended, and rejected. Read the full article in Academe (Winter 2019)
Mission and Goals:
WFU AAUP embraces the mission of the national American Association of University Professors (AAUP) which advances academic freedom and shared governance; defines fundamental professional values and standards for higher education; promotes the economic security of faculty, academic professionals, graduate students, post‐doctoral fellows, and all those engaged in teaching and research in higher education, helps the higher-education community organize to make our goals a reality; and, advocates for higher education’s contribution to the common good.
Join the National AAUP
The national office has a long history of assisting the WFU-AAUP, especially on matters of tenure and promotion. Please support the work of the AAUP by joining now at: https://www.aaup.org/membership/join
 Sources: American Association of University Professors, Faculty Compensation Survey (Mar.-Apr. 2018); Office of Institutional Research. The nine comparison institutions are: Davidson, Duke, Emory, Richmond, UNC-CH, UVA, Vanderbilt, Washington and Lee, and William and Mary.