by Lisa Cook, Academic Impressions
During the recent recession, the Maricopa Community College District shifted more classes to part-time adjunct faculty as a cost-cutting measure -– a trend that was mirrored nationwide. Unfortunately, that move typically has a negative effect on student retention and completion rates, according to the Center for Community College Student Engagement.
Now Maricopa is working to reverse that trend and move to a 60:40 model in order to improve student success outcomes. We talked with Chancellor Rufus Glasper, Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Maria Harper-Marinick, Faculty Association President Keith Heffner, and Eddie Genna, who served as Faculty Association president as the initiative was being debated, to understand how and why Maricopa is making this transformative change and what they need to prioritize to accomplish it successfully.
Changing the FT/PT Faculty Ratio from 90:10 to 60:40
Maricopa originally established a 90:10 full-time/part-time faculty ratio when the community college district was created in 1962. According to the ratio, 90 percent of daytime courses would be taught by full-time professors, and the remaining 10 percent by part-time adjuncts. Evening classes would also be taught primarily by part-time adjuncts.
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