Saturday, February 13, 2010

I'm Glad I Was Awarded Tenure:

Actually, this year (my fifth year teaching full time). It kicks in Fall 2010. At community colleges, we tend to get less "respect" than four year or graduate colleges. We also teach more (and I'd argue better). Because that's what we are paid to do. 15 credits is minimum semester load and many, like yours truly, teach overloads.

As it were, we have less time to publish and publishing is not a job requirement. Yet, many of us do publish because, perhaps, we thought we'd end up at a four year college (I didn't think I would, btw) and/or otherwise have the interest and ability to publish. Again, no job pressure to do so.

As far as I know, we get paid/benefits on par with four year schools (in many cases, we get a better deal).

And if an untenured CC prof does a credible job teaching and serves on the requisite committees as expected, tenure is presumptive. (That is, you really have to mess up to not get it.) THAT really makes up for the lack of proper respect CCs get from some circles.

With that said, we have sad, shocking stories like this that relate to being denied tenure at four year colleges.

I remember when Daniel Drezner was denied tenure at University of Chicago. I learned more about how different schools have vastly different policies about who gets it and who doesn't. As far as I understand, at the Ivy League or top tier level, except for law (and perhaps some other schools of exception), it's presumptive that you DON'T get tenure, even if you teach well and publish a lot.

What Dr. Drezner did -- when he made a lateral move from Chicago (a top tier school) to Tufts (a very good school, but not as prestigious as Chicago) -- is typical of the good professor who does his job but is nonetheless denied tenure at the ivy league level, for whatever reason.

I'm just happy I don't have to worry about crap like that.

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