Providing Newly Recruited Faculty with Necessary Support

AS-2723-05/FA - November 3-4, 2005

RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate of the California State University (CSU) again call attention to the difficulty experienced by campus hiring committees in recruiting the numbers of well-qualified faculty CSU needs to preserve the high quality of classroom instruction for which it has earned renown; and be it further

RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate CSU reiterate its concern about the high costs that faculty face when relocating to California from lower cost-of-living regions of the United States; and be it further

RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate CSU urge campus administrations to ensure, as a matter of principle, that all faculty, including new recruits, be provided with the office space, technology, equipment, and other facilities and materials necessary for them to begin their academic duties upon the agreed-upon date of their employment; and be it further

RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate CSU also urge campus administrations to compensate new faculty in a timely manner through salary advances or other mechanisms to ensure that they can meet basic living and healthcare expenses immediately upon their arrival and adapt to their new environments and positions as members of the faculty; and be it further

RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate CSU urge the Vice-Chancellor for Human Resources to provide information relevant to the issues described above and to work with appropriate campus officers to address these concerns; and be it further

RESOLVED: That the Academic Senate CSU send this resolution to the campus senates for action as appropriate on the campuses.

RATIONALE: That there is a crisis in faculty recruitment is obvious to all involved. At the same time that the CSU is preparing to handle another "tidal wave" of students, large numbers of faculty members are reaching retirement age, especially on the campuses that had huge growth in the 1960s and 1970s (AS-2497-00/FA Faculty Recruitment and Retention).

The CSU hires tenure-track faculty from a national pool and therefore faces serious competition for new faculty members. The CSU faces serious constraints on its ability to recruit faculty of high quality during the coming decade because of

Recruiting faculty continues to be a major challenge in the CSU. In many disciplines, new colleagues join the CSU at salary levels significantly below national averages while moving to a region with substantially higher-than-national-average living costs; in many instances, these new faculty colleagues are asked to begin their academic duties in August and wait until the October pay period to receive their first paychecks and for their health insurance coverage to be activated.

In some disciplines, there are more positions available than new faculty ready to fill them. By virtue of its lower salaries and higher costs of living, the CSU starts out at a competitive disadvantage. Arriving on campuses ill equipped to properly welcome them only compounds the financial hardships new faculty colleagues are asked to shoulder and makes a poor first impression on new colleagues.

While there is little that the CSU can do about living costs and while salary gaps will take a long time to close, there are some things that campuses can control in the short run that will make new colleagues feel more confident in their decisions to join our faculty. Campuses need to ensure that every effort is made to provide new faculty hires with the basic necessities for doing their jobs. Campuses should also be encouraged to ensure that arrangements are made to allow new hires to receive adequate income to sustain themselves and their families from the date of hire through the date of their first paychecks.

APPROVED UNANIMOUSLY -- January 26-27, 2006

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