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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Proposal for Wrap-A-Round Adjunct Health Insurance

Written in 1982, this memo discussed the possibility of implementing a "wraparound" medical health insurance plan for adjunct faculty. It argued that this option would be superior because it offered free choice of physician and 365 days of hospital [...]

Letter: Economic Disparity

In this letter addressed to President Irwin Polishook of the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), Jonathan Lang, Chair of the Doctoral Students’ Council (DSC), outlined the differences in salaries between adjunct and full-time faculty and expressed [...]

Doctoral Students Council News: Murphy's Optimism

This Doctoral Students’ Council (DSC) newsletter, published in 1982, covered adjunct news that ranged from notes on a meeting the DSC steering committee had with Chancellor Murphy to a satirical piece entitled “How not to be an Adjunct”. The [...]

The Graduate Students' Union 1983-84: A position paper

Written by the Graduate Students’ Union (GSU) in 1983-84, this position paper stated the intentions of the recently formed organization. The aims enumerated were to advance the interests of CUNY graduate students as employees (or prospective [...]

Association of Part-time Faculty: A letter to the PSC

In addition to a reference to an earlier meeting, this March 15, 1983 letter from Nancy Erber of the Association of Part-Time Faculty and addressed to Mr. Arnold Cantor (PSC Executive Director) and Ms. Susan Prager (PSC Vice President), assured the [...]

Form Letter Reviewing Provisions of 1983 Contract Agreement

Written by Susan Prager, the PSC's Vice President for Part-Time Personnel, this April 1983 letter was distributed to adjunct professors. The letter, intended to inform adjuncts of the terms of the new CUNY agreement which extended retroactively from [...]

Form Letter for those Expressing Interest in Medical Plan

Distributed in late May 1983, this letter was sent to those who had previously expressed an interest in the Professional Staff Congress's (PSC) "Wraparound Major Medical Plan." It included quarterly employee payment costs under the plan.

RE: Unemployment Compensation

This June 17, 1983, memo, sent to all adjunct members of the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), informed part-time faculty that they had a right to appeal all state unemployment compensation denials since 1978 based on a procedural violation. [...]

Part-time Personnel: A Newsletter (1)

This 1983 Professional Staff Congress (PSC) Part-time Personnel newsletter communicated the 1982-84 contractual agreement between the PSC and CUNY. It advised all adjuncts to understand the contractual language, as that knowledge would allow them to [...]

The Refuse: On Representation or Decertification

This issue of The Refuse (December 1983-January  1984), a Doctoral Students’ Council newletter, addressed the issue of retrenchment at CUNY, pointing to several articles that had mischaracterized CUNY’s relationship to labor precarity and [...]

Deconstructing Chancellor Murphy's Comments on Adjuncts

The Association of Part-Time faculty (APTF) sent out this correspondence to full -and part-time faculty asking them to send letters to CUNY Chancellor Joseph Murphy who had called the adjunct employment situation “catastrophic” but, according [...]

Association of Part-time Faculty Quiz

Produced by the Association of Part-time Faculty (APTF) at CUNY, this satirical quiz juxtaposed current CUNY adjunct rights with the recent labor achievements of other institutions of higher education. It also provided a mock balance sheet in which [...]

Part-time Personnel: A Newsletter (2)

This October 22, 1984 Professional Staff Congress (PSC) Part-time Personnel newsletter reviewed the 1982-84 contractual agreements between the PSC and CUNY. Workloads were described as "the most significant change" and allowed adjunct faculty to [...]

Part-time Personnel: A Newsletter (3)

This 1985 Professional Staff Congress (PSC) Part-time Personnel newsletter described the benefits achieved in the PSC-CUNY 1984-1987 contract. Most notably adjuncts who taught six or more hours per semester and at least one course in the same [...]

PTU Newsletter (vol. 1., no. 1)

The debut newsletter in 1986 of PTU View, was published by a group devoted to fighting for the rights of part-time staff at CUNY. Included were listed contacts at various CUNY campuses; announcements of several Spring meetings; and a detailed [...]

Introduction to, and invitation to join, the PTU View

Dissatisfied with their lack of "representation" by the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), the Graduate Students' Union and Doctoral Students' Council founded the CUNY Part-Time Instructional and Research Staff Union in 1986. This letter outlined [...]

Health Care Benefit Description and Application

This January 21, 1986 document, sent to adjunct PSC  members, is the first official correspondence from CUNY's Office of the Vice Chancellor for Faculty and Staff Relations which described the details of the fully paid, adjunct health care [...]

GSU Denied Room for Meeting

This document, filed in 1986, included both the original memo from the Graduate Center's Associate Provost for Academic Affairs, Geoffrey Marshall, and the Graduate Student Union’s (GSU) response. In the initial memo, the permission to use a room [...]

Notice of Appearance: PERB and the Part-Time and Instructional Research Staff Union

This December 2, 1986 Notice of Hearing, addressed to (but not confirmed by) the City University of New York and the Professional Staff Congress, announced that a hearing would be conducted on February 26, 1987 at the NYS Public Employment Relations [...]

PTU View

The August 1986 PTU View newsletter called for adjunct faculty to sign a "union authorization" card. In addition to listing how the Professional Staff Congress (PSC) had failed to represent the interests of contingent faculty, the PTU’s demands [...]

REFUSE: The DSC and the Will to Power

"The DSC and the Will to Power," published in the Refuse – a Doctoral Student Council (DSC) publication, was drafted in the fall of 1986 by Vincent Tirelli, Chair of the DSC. The article made the case for creating space for "interdisciplinary [...]

Adjunct Benefits: Questions and Answers

This September 18, 1986 memo from the Office of the Vice-Chancellor for Faculty and Staff Relations at CUNY to the Labor Designees and Personnel Officers on the campuses listed a series of revised questions regarding the implementation of adjunct [...]

A Vote for Choice

This October 17, 1986 letter, written by Jeffrey Gerson, the president of the Part-time Instructional and Research Staff Union (PTU), was a call for adjunct faculty to sign an enclosed card in support of putting the PTU on the ballot to run against [...]

Reasons Adjuncts Should Stay in the PSC

This October 21, 1986 letter, written on PSC letterhead and signed by Professional Staff Congress (PSC) Vice President Howard L. Jones, was sent to adjunct faculty. The letter stated that the "terms and conditions" of employment of adjuncts within [...]

Three more Years of Do-Nothing Representation

This November 14, 1986 newsletter, written by members of The Part-Time Instructional and Research Staff Union (PTU) and addressed to CUNY part-timers, outlined the PTU's arguments for, and the PSC's arguments against, the certification of a new [...]

Why Adjunct Faculty Should Join the PSC

This newsletter, written in 1987 by the Adjunct Faculty Association (AFA), formed shortly after the failure of the Part-time Instructional and Research Staff Union (PTU) to achieve the right to form a separate union, called for adjuncts to join the [...]

Legal Objection to PTU Petition

This letter, sent in 1987 from the law offices of Guazzo, Perelson, Rushfield, and Guazzo, to the New York State Public Employment Relations Board (PERB), indicated the Professionals Staff Congress's (PSC) objections to the Part-Time Instructional [...]

"Equal pay for Equal Work"

This 1994 flyer, produced by the Adjunct Faculty Association (AFA) at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, was an appeal to the Professional Staff Congress (PSC) to stop supporting a two-tiered salaru system. The document detailed inequities in [...]

The Trouble with Adjuncts: The Transients' Mentality

"The Trouble with Adjuncts: The Transients' Mentality", published in The Advocate in 1994 and written by Daniel Mozes, analyzed why adjuncts had traditionally been ineffective in advocating for their own rights. In addition to having lamented the [...]

Adjunct Medical Plan

This memo, produced in 1994 by the Professional Staff Congress (PSC), compared the cost of individual and family healthcare plans from HIP and Blue Cross. Specific details about each plan were also provided.

Part-time Personnel - 1994

This 1994 Professional Staff Congress (PSC) part-timers newsletter communicated improvements in  adjunct working conditions that had been won in the recently ratified contract, which included expansion of health insurance eligibility and the [...]

"Student Struggles"

Written by Eric Marshall and published in 1996 in The Advocate, this article explained the function of  the CUNY Adjunct Project (CAP) as an aggregator of data about adjunct work at CUNY. Critical of the Professional Staff Congress's (PSC) role [...]

Memo: Recent negotiations on behalf of Adjuncts

This 1996 memo by the Professional Staff Congress (PSC) staff,enumerated the rights and privileges that adjuncts had gained in the most recent collective bargaining agreement and legislative efforts.

A letter from the CUNY Adjuncts Unite!

In a concerted effort to unite across campuses, CUNY Adjuncts Unite! (CAU) organizers wrote a letter to the Professional Staff Congress (PSC) leadership in June 1997 about their concerns, which included poor outreach and a lack of information about [...]

CUNY Adjunct Alert (February 1998)

This February 1998 CUNY Adjunct Alert newsletter announced a demonstration for paid adjunct office hours and encouraged people to send timesheets that included unpaid office hours. In addition, it explained why CUNY had an incentive to contest [...]

CUNY Adjunct Alert (May 1998)

This May 1998 CUNY Adjunct Alert newsletter included an update on the International Adjunct Conference as well as an announcement about the decision to hold a Professional Staff Congress (PSC) referendum. Also covered was information about how [...]

Adjunct Office Hours

In an October 14, 1998 memo sent to Professional Staff Congress (PSC) chapter chairs, President Irwin Polishook referenced past negotiations in which the PSC had endorsed payment for an adjunct office hour but failed to secure a contractual right to [...]

CUNY Adjunct Alert (December 1998)

This newsletter, produced by CUNY Adjunct Unite! (CAU), discussed the PSC's alleged accusations against both CAU and The Adjunct Project for violating New York State's Taylor Law. The article argued that CAU is an independent organization and [...]

CUNY Adjunct Alert (March 1999)

The March 1999 CUNY Adjunct Alert! Newsletter illustrated the tension between activist group, CUNY Adjuncts Unite!, and the Professional Staff Congress (PSC) leadership, in particular, President Irwin Polishook. The article, entitled “Irwin’s [...]

CUNY Adjunct Alert (September 1999)

The September 1999 issue of the CUNY Adjunct Alert discussed the importance of the grievance process and offered updates on a referendum on automatic dues deduction and adjunct health insurance.CUNY Adjuncts Unite! (CAU), an independent coalition of [...]

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