CUNY Digital History Archive

CUNY Digital History Archive

A participatory project to collect and preserve the histories of the City University of New York — A work in progress
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Fact Finding "Brief"

This excerpt from a Fact Finding "Brief" focused on CUNY's exploitative use of adjunct faculty following the advent in 1970 of open enrollment. Following a clarification of the types of part-time positions, the brief criticized low adjunct pay, [...]

Adjunct and Part-Time Faculty Caucus Contract Demands

Compiled by the "Adjunct and Part-Time Faculty Caucus", this twenty-item list included a number of contract demands specific to CUNY's large adjunct teaching population. The “Adjunct and Part-time Faculty Caucus” was a group formed in 1973. [...]

Adjuncts Reject PSC Contract

Tom Lynch's 1973 article, “Adjuncts Reject PSC Contract,” published in The Meridian, The Student Voice of Lehman College, argued that the raise was inadequate in so far as it was lower than the cost of living and was less than what full-time [...]

Response to the Adjunct and Part-time Faculty Caucus

This letter, dated May 14th, 1973, was addressed to David Allen and signed by David Newton of Chancellor Kibbee’s office. In the letter, Newton responded to a request to a meeting by asking for identification and affiliation, explaining that the [...]

Oral History Interview with Lilia Melani

“I was not interested in changing CUNY’s policies. I wanted to transform the very nature of the power structure.” – Lilia Melani Conducted in 2019, as part of the Professional Staff Congress' (PSC) oral history initiative, this interview [...]

"We Accuse"

“We Accuse The Members of the Emergency Financial Control Board of Crimes Against the Community” flyer was created by the Community Coalition to Save Hostos (CCSH) for the May 10, 1976 march that proceeded from El Barrio to the headquarters of [...]

Newt Davidson Parody: Memo to Gov. Rockefeller on CUNY Planning

This recently discovered (August 2017) document from the papers of historian Judith Stein, is the only extant example of what preceded the Crisis at CUNY brochure. As explained in the interview done with four members of the Newt Davidson Collective, [...]

Draft of an Appeal to the City University Community

This draft of a 1970 appeal to the CUNY community was written by the United Federation of College Teachers (UFCT). It accused tCUNY of paying teachers "sweatshop wages" with the objective of obtaining cheap labor for the open enrollment program. The [...]

"Will You Listen to this Cry for Justice?"

This flyer, produced and circulated in 1970 by the United Federation of College Teachers (UFCT), called for students and teachers to stand together and demand that CUNY honor the contract. It stated that despite 6,000 lecturers and teaching [...]

Letter to Legislative Conference Members

This letter from 1971, signed by Belle Zeller, the chair of the Legislative Conference (LC), was addressed to LC members. It requested that members identify part-time faculty represented by the United Federation of College Teachers (UFCT) who would [...]

Vote for Unity: United Federation of College Teachers/Legislative Conference Merger Talks

This 1971 memo, written by the United Federation of College Teachers (UFCT), described the merger talks between the UFCT and the Legislative Conference (LC) and the obstacles to consolidation into what would become the Professional Staff Congress. [...]

Clarion: Professional Staff Congress (PSC) demands

This 1972 PSC/Clarion article included some of the Professional Staff Congress's (PSC) demands for adjuncts. It called for adjunct tenure to be obtained after the tenth semester, preferential hiring rights for full-time positions, salary increases, [...]

Letter from the "Adjunct and Part-time Faculty Caucus"

Posted on the walls of John Jay College in 1973, this letter from the Executive Committee of the "Adjunct and Part-time Faculty Caucus" called for broader support from the CUNY community for the dignity and rights of adjunct faculty. In addition to [...]

Part-Time Instructional Staff: A Resolution for a Decent Contract

This  September 7th, 1973 resolution was written by William Leicht, the VP of the Committee for Part-Time Instructional Staff of the PSC. It stated that a contract that "fails to benefit the weak as well as the strong, violates the basic [...]

PSC Adjunct Report (V. 1, N. 2)

This 1974 Professional Staff Congress (PSC) Committee for Part-Time Personnel Newsletter included articles on adjunct faculty being threatened at Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC), maximum workload quotas, the election of convention [...]

To "The New York Teacher"

These 1974 letters concerned adjunct faculty job security and what constituted reasons for adjunct dismissasl. Included in this item was a request for PSC President Belle Zeller to respond to an editorial from PSC Deputy Vice President Israel [...]

NY PERB: Improper Practice Charge

This NY Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) “Improper Practice Charge,” filed in 1974 by David Allen of the Adjunct Faculty Association, alleged that the Professional Staff Congress (PSC) deliberately entered into an labor agreement that [...]

Adjunct Faculty Association Newsletter (v. 1. n. 1)

This February 1974 Adjunct Faculty Association newsletter included an announcement of the formation of the Adjunct Faculty Association (AFA), the new organization's formal complaint filed against the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), several [...]

The Parttimer: Committee for Part-Time Instructional Staff

This 1974 issue of The Parttimer, a Professional Staff Congress (PSC) newsletter, announced the Delegate Assembly's official approval of a newly formed Committee for Part-time Instructional Staff. The Committee for P/T personnel was an organization [...]

An Appeal to the Faculty to Vote for a Strike: Adjuncts will be the first to go but “you may be next."

Written by the Adjunct Faculty Association, this 1975 flier argued for a strike, claiming that the budget cuts would result in the mass firings of adjunct faculty and increased workloads for full-time faculty. It also claimed that, according to the [...]

Part-Time Faculty Members of the PSC

This September 29th, 1975 memo , written by David Allen of the Committee for Part-time Instructional Staff, announced a delay in the proposed strike and claimed that the decision to defer it made it unlikely that those who had been fired would be [...]

Arguments Relating to Adjuncts for Submission to Factfinders

This October 10, 1975 memo, written by the Committee for Part-time Personnel and circulated among members and potential members, included both an agenda for an upcoming meeting and a list of arguments relating to adjuncts for fact-finders to present [...]

Letter to Cantor, re: Retrenchment of Adjunct Faculty

This 1975 letter from Stephen C. Vladeck, a prominent labor lawyer a to Mr. Arnold Cantor, Executive Director of the Professional Staff Congress (PSC) expressed doubt about the wrongful termination of an adjunct professor and recommended that the [...]

PSC Newsletter to Part-timers

This June 28, 1976 memo from Susan Prager, chairperson of the Committee for Part-Time Personnel, was addressed to part-time members of the Professional Staff Congress (PSC). It included the renewed retrenchment guidelines for adjuncts and stated [...]

PSC v. CUNY re: Dividing full-time positions into adjunct appointments

This grievance, filed on September 17th, 1976, by the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), alleged that CUNY had replaced full-time faculty positions with adjunct appointments despite having sufficient course offerings to reinstate retrenched [...]

" But I'm only an Adjunct "

"Part-Time Teaching at CUNY" was written by members of the Committee of Untenured Faculty (CUF) in 1976. Part I of the article included a collection of anecdotes culled from adjuncts' experiences of precarity and isolation across CUNY. Part II, [...]

Vote for the PSC-BHE Contract

This letter, written by Susan Prager in 1977, urged readers to vote in favor of the Professional Staff Congress - Board of Higher Education (PSC - BHE) contract. While the letter acknowledged that some members would be disappointed, it listed three [...]

CUNY's Board of Higher Education Meeting to Approve Study of Women and Sex Roles (CSWS)

This Summary of Action Taken at the November 22, 1976, Meeting of CUNY's Board of Higher Education contained a report of the approval of the Institute for the Study of Women and Sex Roles, which became the Center for the Study of Women and Society [...]

Institute for the Study of Women and Sex Roles Bylaws

This two-page report detailed the Institute for the Study of Women and Sex Roles' purpose and scope, need, functions, audience, space required, estimated costs, sources of funds, and relation to existing centers, schools, and institutes in the [...]

Institute for the Study of Women and Sex Roles Proposal Addendum

This addendum to the proposal for an Institute for the Study of Women and Sex Roles, which would later become the Center for the Study of Women and Society (CSWS), gave a clearer picture of the Institute's desired role in the CUNY system. Expressed [...]

Oral History Interview with Stuart Schaar

This interview with Stuart Schaar, Professor Emeritus of Middle East History at Brooklyn College, was conducted by Douglas Medina for his research on Open Admissions at CUNY. Stuart Schaar was raised in the Bronx and attended the City College of [...]

Oral History Interview with Stella Zahn, Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education

In this impromptu interview conducted on July 27, 2013, Stella Zahn discusses the mission, students, and founding years of the Sophie Davis Biomedical School established in 1973. Stella was initially hired to be Director of Student Services but [...]

Oral History Interview with Anselma Rodriguez

In this oral history, Anselma Rodriguez discusses her experiences as a student at Brooklyn College from 1969-1973. She was a founding a member of Movimiento Estudiantil Dominicanos and active in Brooklyn College's Puerto Rican Studies Department. [...]

Oral History Interview with Henry Arce

In this interview conducted about CUNY’s Open Admissions program, Arce describes his journey from the NYC Public School system to graduating from college. He credits his mother, who raised him alone in a Puerto Rican, immigrant community, for [...]

Oral History Interview with Allen Ballard

This oral history interview was conducted on April 4, 2014 at SUNY Albany. Allen Ballard grew up in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and arrived at the City College of New York in 1960 as an assistant professor of Political Science. He was one of the [...]

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