Faculty Story: Jack Bookman, Mathematics

Faculty Story: Jack Bookman, Mathematics

From 1982-2012, I was a contingent faculty member at Duke University holding, at one time or another, all ranks from Instructor to Professor of the Practice. I strongly support the current effort to unionize non-tenure track faculty at Duke. While conditions for POPs at Duke have improved over the last 10 or so years, conditions for other non-tenure faculty (“tenuous” faculty, as a colleague of mine called himself) do not seem to have improved at all. POPs and, to a larger extent, other non-TT faculty …

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Faculty Story: Rann Bar-On, Mathematics

Faculty Story: Rann Bar-On, Mathematics

I have been at Duke since 2003, first as a PhD student, and now as teaching faculty. In all those years, it has been an honor to pursue my passion for teaching mathematics to bright, ambitious undergraduates from extremely diverse backgrounds.

As a lecturer in the Mathematics Department, I have been treated relatively well at Duke: I am paid enough to consider buying a house and raising a family in it, I have a five year contract, and I have been sponsored for an employment-based Green …

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Faculty Story: Rebecca Bach, Sociology

The situation for adjuncts is that of an underclass in the Duke system. Full professors at Duke are among the highest paid in the country. Assistant professors can start at over $100,000 per year. An adjunct who is paid to teach two courses a semester, a full teaching load in many departments, earns just $30,000 per year and has no benefits or job security. A union provides the only opportunity for contingent faculty to support ourselves and our families.

For Professor Bach’s story, and other stories from …

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Faculty Story: Alexander Motten, Biology

Faculty Story: Alexander Motten, Biology

A significant proportion of undergraduate teaching at Duke is carried out by non-tenure track faculty, but salaries, workloads, lengths of contract, and opportunities for advancement vary greatly. While many of us are no doubt well treated, others among us rightfully feel taken advantage of. My impression is that the University’s commitment to non-tenure track faculty as a group has diminished in recent years, and I would like to see that issue addressed so that our undergraduates can be assured of the high quality …

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From Duke student to Duke faculty: An interview with Tina Del Carpio, Biology

From Duke student to Duke faculty: An interview with Tina Del Carpio, Biology

Instructor Tina Del Carpio, a Duke Teaching First supporter from the Department of Biology, sat down to discuss what it’s like to teach at Duke, the transition from student to faculty, and the relationship between science instruction and gender equality. Stay tuned at duketeachingfirst.org for ongoing faculty interviews.

Duke Teaching First: Let’s start with the nuts and bolts. What are you currently teaching and working on?

Tina Del Carpio: I work as a lab instructor in Biology 201, Intro to Molecular Biology. It’s a really huge course. We typically …

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Take the Duke Faculty Survey

Take the Duke Faculty Survey

As non-tenure track faculty at Duke, we care deeply about our university, our students, and our disciplines. But we know from a survey released last semester that we lack the voice, respect, and transparency that we need. Among the results of the survey:

Only 3% of respondents felt that decision-making procedures at Duke are clear and transparent;
70% of respondents reported that Duke does not provide an opportunity for all faculty to have a voice in decisions made at our university;
67% felt that the senior leadership of …

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Faculty op-ed: Finding a better “new normal”

Faculty op-ed: Finding a better “new normal”

MJ Sharp, an Instructor in the Center for Documentary Studies and a member of the Organizing Committee of Duke Teaching First, describes the changing face of academia and the need for a faculty union:

What perhaps used to be a temporary teaching status, when you paid your dues for a few years with uncertain employment and very humble earnings until you found permanent, gainful employment, is now the permanent reality for a huge swath of university instructors…. I believe that those of us with the ability and passion to …

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