Professors on food stamps: The shocking true story of academia in 2014

Matt Saccaro, Twine, Sept 23, 2014
Commentary by Stephen Downes

I don't know what's so shocking about this. Adjunct and sessional instructors have been abysmally underpaid since the days in the 1990s when I was caught up in that racket. Maybe the new thing is that they now qualify for food stamps; when I was doing it I simply had to manage with whatever food I could scrounge. I can say this: my experience as a sessional convinced me that a life teaching at a university was not for me. And note well: the only reason the system still exists is because, when it's challenged, professors close ranks and defend it to the end. That's why I do not turn to, or depend on, university professors or the institutions that hire them to achieve genuine educational reform that would open the doors of academia to the people who, ultimately, pay for it.

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