May 2019 Advocate: CPFA Conference Report
California Part-time Faculty Association holds annual conference
by Sue Broxholm, Skyline, Math faculty
The California Part-time Faculty Association (CPFA) was founded in 1998 by a hearty band of more than 60 part-time faculty for the purpose of improving the lives of part-time faculty.
Over the years, CPFA has been involved in advancing an agenda which includes issues such as equal pay for equal work (pay parity), paid office hours, job security, health benefits, retirement benefits, and a fair advancement process that includes a real path towards a full-time position.
CPFA has put on annual conferences in order to educate part-time faculty about part-timer issues and lobbying for specific legislation to help part-time faculty. I went to the Spring 2019 conference held at Fullerton College in Fullerton, California, on Saturday, April 6th, for the purpose of sharpening my knowledge about part-time issues and how to improve the circumstances of part-timers.
The conference began with introductions by John Martin, Chair of CPFA, Kent Stevenson, President of AdFac (the adjunct union at Fullerton), and Greg Schultz, Ed.D. President of Fullerton College who welcomed the attendees to Fullerton College and the CPFA Annual Conference.
Assemblymember Sharon Quirk-Silva from the 65th California Assembly District was a special guest who took several questions from the audience and listened to our concerns. She then expressed comments on policies presently being discussed in the California Assembly.
Where Does the Money Go?
We then had a choice of two breakout sessions: “Where Does the Money Go? Analysis of North Orange Community College District Salaries” by David Milroy or “What Academia Gets Wrong about PT Faculty” by Leticia Pastrana. The analysis of the North Orange County CCD salaries made it clear that the lion’s share of funding is going to the top 1/3 of the district’s employees and that the PT faculty are sharing the little which is left over. According to Milroy, this is basically the same in every district in the state.
After lunch, Adam Wetsman, President of Faculty Association of California Community Colleges (FACCC), representing 9500 members across California was Keynote Speaker. Mr. Wetsman spoke on “Part-Time Equity: Long-Term Strategies”.
After a break, there was a session on “How to Get from Here to There with Knowledge and Confidence” that was about planning for retirement for part-time faculty with CalSTRS.
What Are Good Working Conditions?
The last session was a panel discussion about “What Are Good Working Conditions?” The panel speakers were members of the unions for part-time faculty at a number of community colleges, CSU, and UC: John Sullivan, San Bernardino CCA/CTA; Meghan O’Donnell – CSU-CFA; Alexis Moore, Pasadena CC, CCCI; Mia McIver – UC-AFT; Kent Stevenson, Fullerton AdFac/CFT; and Veronica Miranda, Cerritos CCFF/CFT. For me, it was one of the most eye-opening sessions. For example, CSU offers life-time health care benefits even for part-timers if they have been working there long enough. CSU and UC also have pathways to more stable positions and full-time employment.
I found this conference to cover quite a wide range of issues that impact part-time faculty. I especially appreciated learning about lobbying efforts and what other colleges are doing.
I recommend the CPFA and attendance of their conferences for anyone who is vitally interested in improving the conditions of part-time faculty. I invite faculty out there to get involved so we can further improve the conditions of part-time faculty. One way is to contact CPFA at cpfa.org or contact your local union, AFT 1493.