Thursday, March 28, 2013

Come play the game of #fakeadvice for #adjuncts

…that makes us want to say #thenhireme.  Joe Fruscione initiated this thread at Con Job: Stories of Adjunct and Contingent Faculty, a Facebook adjunct group. 

Entertaining, irresistible and a send-viral must share, it would make a good drinking game too. Just thinking about the lines is enough to drive most of us to drink. Joe opens, 

I'm not sure if this is productive or even appropriate, but I'd like to start a thread about phrases long-time adjuncts are sick of hearing. For me:
"You're a perfect example of what's wrong with the market. You've done so much but still can't get a full-time job. Someone should hire you." 
"With 13 years of teaching, a book, and active research, you should be able to teach anywhere. 
"It's their loss."
Others joined in added theirs

Robert Craig Baum "It's just a question of supply and demand. Americans demand cheap labor." <--- as though the market isn't always undermined and manipulted by crony capitalists and the government Kafka-inspired bureaucrats

Robert Craig Baum: "Why would I hire someone who does not respect himself enough to demand a better salary or benefits?" <--- here's the catch-22 perfectly expressed

Joe Fruscione Also: "Just hang in there. Things will turn around."

Melissa Bruninga-Matteau: Mine is 'well, if you wanted a full time gig, you should have majored in STEM'.

Priya J. Shah: "Just make sure to keep up with your (unsupported) research!"

Margaret Yeoman Hanzimanolis Have you thought about teaching high school?

Vanessa Vaile: "at least you've got a job"

Priya J. Shah: "At least you're doing what you love."

Robert Craig Baum: "It was your decision to not drive [60 miles in a blizzard] to work."

Priya J. Shah: "Well, if only you had been willing to move across the country..."

Priya J. Shah: Clearly I'm pissed. That's not a quotation, that's just me.

Robert Craig Baum: "We're cancelling your three classes because they are underenrolled"   [19 students, not 20] NOT JOKING!

Joe Fruscione: Great so far. How can we get this to more people? Twitter? Etc.? (This is me, not a canned line I hate.)

Now it's your turn: help us get this to more people. Share the #fakeadvice lines you are most fed up with hearing. How? Any and every which way. Add them wherever you see this: here, on our FB page, on the original Con Job thread, as a reply when you see it on Twitter. Reblog, RT and share to closed groups too, 


  1. How about, "No one held a gun to their heads to get the degree." Or "Just go into some other line of work and stop glutting the market." Or "They have to be willing to sacrifice for the good jobs." Or "They made the choice to work be adjuncts because they couldn't cut it." Or ..... and so forth. --Darthvadersmom

    1. DVM (for short) that may be the most depressing part, the sameness of them ~ and meanness. I suspect they will fall into the same few categories. If you are on Twitter, Lee Kottner and Joe Fruscione are moving it over there, hashtags #fakeadvice and #hiremethen

  2. "We need to make sure that we take care of the grad students first."

    This was remark when I was told that I would not be teaching the on-line course I created and had taught for last 5 years. I would add that I teach one graduate course and that is on how to teach.

  3. "We're not in this for the money, we're in this for the students." [Typically said by a highly-paid, FT administrator or TT faculty member)

    ... and ...

    "Doing [an unpaid task (or) attending a meeting unpaid] will make the Dean look favorably when it comes times to assign classes next semester."

    1. "It's a privilege to work for this university. The best adjuncts want to give back."

    2. Now, Chessie, would that be from the same fine institution you described in the Donor series?

  4. First: A big, big thank you to Vanessa for handling the social media/community angle of this so deftly.

    Second: When is the last time you heard, "This is very unfair. Adjuncts do such important work, and we value it"?

    1. Not so uncommon when followed by "...but..." #showmethemoney would be the appropriate rejoinder

  5. Good collection going here... I am going to collect others from the Facebook threads to post here and for update posts

    1. PS if you use Twitter, the hashtags are #adjunct #fakeadvice and #thenhireme

  6. 1) "You should thank your lucky stars (bonus point for extra cliché) you don't have to be involved in academic politics--that's brutal."
    2) "Well, though, you can pick and choose,and that kind of flexibility is what everybody's looking for these days."

    1. good catch, bonus points for extra clichés. Do we need a rubric?

  7. Catching up on comments at Con Job:

    Lee Kottner My favorite: You should just quit and get a different job.

    Vanessa Vaile "just suck it up, Mom"

    Margaret Yeoman Hanzimanolis You're so lucky you don't have to go to meetings.
    Yesterday at 8:05pm · Like · 1

    Margaret Yeoman Hanzimanolis I was an adjunct too for (2, 5, 10, 12, 15) years.
    Yesterday at 8:05pm · Like

    Margaret Yeoman Hanzimanolis Why on earth would you work for so little?

    Robert Craig Baum "Stop complaining and get a second job."

    Margaret Yeoman Hanzimanolis How do you pay your student loans?

    Robert Craig Baum "What did you expect from a humanities degree?" (I don't know, a job mfer?!?) <-- like it's been for decades???)

    Melissa Bruninga-Matteau "What do you expect when you have tattoos" (seriously, a lot of the Chronicle article comments were strangely obsessed with my ink...all of which is in places that can be covered with clothing)

    Ana Maria Fores Tamayo Student: you mean I make more $$ than you?


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