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Newsletter March 2020

President’s Message

Acienit id quatust ibustrum esequi dem velles pro te que nis niA week or so before the beginning of spring break, Governor Tom Wolf visited maxim illaborae in et resectat et campus to promote a scholarship es as endus que esti ut omnien- and meet students. As faculty, we had just met the threshold of a minimum of 200 new retirees necessary for an early retirement FINISH READING ON PG. 2 market was cruising along at or near record incentive to go into effect. The stock levels. Now, a week or so after spring break, there is only one thing on most people's minds: the coronavirus. Our students have been sent home, as have we. The stock market has dropped precipitously. People around the world, and, increasingly, in our own area, have become ill with or have died from COVID-19. These are truly frightening times. At the same time, I feel optimistic about our own response in the face of this unprecedented disruption. Our faculty and our university community have rallied to make the semester work. Faculty members who have never taught online spent much of spring break and the next week learning new technologies, through workshops offered by KU's IT department and beyond. One of the most heartening things to see was how our faculty rallied together to create online groups and email chains full of useful information. Separated from our offices, the campus, and each other, we have still managed to connect using whatever means are available. Has it been easy? No. Have there been some bumps in the road? Yes. But we haven't let anything stop us from doing our jobs as educators. From everything I've been reading, I believe we will face more challenges as the coronavirus spreads in Pennsylvania. The spirit of support and outreach I've seen from our university community lends me a sense of optimism. This semester is unlike any other, but we will make it through together. Stay safe and healthy.

Tom Stewart President, APSCUF-KU



Table of Contents Tom Wolf Visits KU Nellie Bly Scholarship

Page 4

10 Things to Know

Page 7

APSCUF Open Social

Page 9

President: Thomas Stewart Vice President: Michael Gambone

Page 5

Secretary: Amy Lynch-Biniek Treasurer: Anke Walz Delegate: Bill Donner, Anthropology & Sociology Delegate: Lisa Frye, Computer & Information Technology Delegate: Bob Kilker, English Delegate: Jason Lanter, Psychology Delegate: Tabetha Bernstein-Danis, Special Education Delegate: Mahfuzul Khondaker, Criminal Justice Delegate: Darren Achey, Physical Sciences Alternate: Robert L. Smith, Communication Studies Alternate: Philip Bolger, Criminal Justice Alternate: Yuxia Quian, Communication Studies Alternate: Kaoutar El Mounadi, Biology Alternate: Tauqeer Hussain, Computer Science

Coaches President: John Gump Vice President: Judith Lawes


APSCUF State Leadership Address: 19 North Front Street Harrisburg, PA 17101 Phone Numbers: (717) 236 – 7487 or (800) 932 – 0587

President: Ken Mash, East Stroudsburg Vice President: Jamie Martin, Indiana University of Pennsylvania Treasurer: Chris Hallen, Bloomsburg Secretary: Michele Papakie, Indiana Coach Executive Leader: John Gump, Kutztown Faculty Officer-At-Large: Joyce Overly, Clarion Faculty Officer-At-Large: Kara Laskowski, Shippensburg Faculty Officer-At-Large: Ben A. Shaevitz, Slippery Rock Labor Relations, (Grievance-Faculty and Coaches): Mary Rita DuVall, head of labor relations: (800) 932 – 0587, ext. 2 Julie A. Reese, director: (800) 932 – 0587, ext. 2 Joshua J. Grubbs, director: (800) 932 – 0587, ext. 2 Sara E. Miller, director: (800) 932 – 0587, ext. 2 Jewel Tunstall, administrative assistant: 800-932-0587, ext. 3018 Angela Belcher, administrative assistant: 800-932-0587, ext. 3015 Government and Public Relations: Sean Crampsie, director of government relations: 800-932-0587, ext. 3014 Kathryn Morton, communications director: 800-932-0587, ext. 3007 Ty Marks, administrative assistant: 800-932-0587, ext. 3024 Membership Services: Bim Arthun, specialist: 800-932-0587, ext. 3021 Monica Troutman, secretary/receptionist: 800-932-0587, ext. 3001 Organizing: Chabria Thomas, director of organizing: 800-932-0587, ext. 3022 Researcher: Chris Dunne, researcher: 800-932-0587, ext. 3026 Support Staff: Andrea Mahoney, executive assistant to the president: 800-932-0587, ext. 3005 Beth Connelly, director of finance and facilities: 800-932-0587, ext. 3004

APSCUF is Requesting Your Publications! State APSCUF wishes to receive complimentary copies of published works from members. This includes books, articles, and/or recordings. Your work will be added to the APSCUF member library at the state office. Letters of appreciation will acknowledge each donation. Please submit your contributions to the APSCUF-KU office at Old Main 203-A, and it will be sent to Harrisburg.


Tom Wolf Visits KU On Wednesday March 4th, Tom Wolf visited Kutztown University campus to speak about his plan for a new scholarship called the Nellie Bly Scholarship. The scholarship is aimed to help


Pennslyvania’s students better afford going to college.

Please inform the KU APSCUF office After speaking about his plans, he visited students

if you have a new address or any

and answered questions in the MSU lobby. To

other changes that would require an

Changes? updated PA Faculty

learn more about the Nellie Bly Scholarship, Tom

Health and

Wolf’s offical news article is available here, or you


can read the article written by our APSCUF intern

Examples of applicable changes are

Sam below.

your name,



marital status,

card. and

dependents. To make these changes, contact Sarra at (610) 683-4277 or apscufku@kutztown.edu


Nellie Bly Scholarship by Samantha Tice

Governor Tom Wolf is proposing a new scholarship for students of PASSHE schools. It is named after the late Nellie Bly, an Armstrong county native born in 1864 who was forced to drop out of college after her father died, but later became a famous journalist for an undercover report about the conditions in an insane asylum. The money for this scholarship is coming out of the subsidy program for our state’s horse racing industry. This decision created friction with The Pennsylvania Equine Coalition (which represents owners, trainers, drivers, and breeders), who have publicly criticized the proposal since it was announced in February of 2020. One member of The Pennsylvania Equine Coalition named Pat Chapman had this to say about the proposed changes, “I cannot believe that our Governor would turn his back on the horse breeding and racing industry. This would be absolutely devastating to so many of us in the horse business. If the governor goes through with this proposal, the end is near for my breeding and racing days in the state of Pennsylvania and for many others.” The reason why so many in the horse breeding and racing industry are upset, is that Wolf’s plan would eliminate the funding for purses (prize money for winning races), in order to fund the $204 million he needs annually to fund this proposal. The Pennsylvania Horse Breeders Association reports that purse money is what drives their industry. It trickles down to jockeys, trainers, veterinarians, farmers who provide straw for bedding and feed products, and thousands of others. Without it, the horse racing industry will likely not survive in Pennsylvania. In response to his critics, Wolf had this to say, “let’s bet on our kids instead of bankrolling racehorse owners and ensure the viability of the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education.” It will be an uphill battle for the governor to get this proposal passed as Republican legislators aren’t embracing the proposal. At a Capitol News Conference following the budget address, Senate Majority Leader Jake Corman, RCentre, raised concerns about potential job losses. “It makes for a nice line here, and that’s important for him,” Corman said of Wolf’s description of the proposal. “But as we go through, we need to vet these proposals, and see the total impact of them and then make a decision from there.” While many argue the losses that could happen from redirecting the money away from the industry are not worth the gain from helping students, Wolf insists this move would only benefit Pennsylvanians. Largely because the scholarship is intended to keep jobs in Pennsylvania and boost the economy by allowing graduates to have more money to spend in-state instead of giving it to the federal government to pay off loans.


The Wolf administration says the scholarship money would go to students who pledge to stay in the state after graduation.


For students, that means taking the scholarship for one year would require them to live in Pennsylvania at least one year after graduation. This requirement stacks for every year the

student leaves the state before meeting the commitment, the

Faculty/Coach Internship Offers Opportunities

scholarship converts into a loan the student must pay back to

State APSCUF's faculty and coaches orientation

student receives the Nellie Bly scholarship. This incentive is aimed at keeping skilled workers in the commonwealth. If a

the state.

internship is for APSCUF members who have some local APSCUF responsibility and are interested in

The dollars granted through the Nellie Bly Tuition Program

expanding a working knowledge of the union.

would cover tuition, books, living expenses, or any other costs

Interns spend a week in the summer in the Harrisburg

that a student can’t meet with Pell Grants or other forms of assistance. If the proposal is approved, an estimated 25,000 students would receive money from the tuition program each year.

office to observe the entire spectrum of union administration. They interact with staff members who serve in various capacities. The program aims to prepare APSCUF members for increased local and/or state responsibilities.

For now, Governor Tom Wolf is visiting every PASSHE campus to spread the word and answer questions about the Nellie Bly




download an application and more information about

Scholarship. He has already visited Kutztown University, Lock

hotels, travel, and meals. Questions? Email Katie

Haven and West Chester campuses. Due to the outbreak of

Jeffries at kjeffries@apscuf.org.

COVID-19, Wolf’s administration is not releasing any dates for the time frame of other PASSHE campus visits or updates on the status of the scholarship.

CAP: The Political Voice of APSCUF APSCUF’s Committee for Action through Politics (APSCUF/CAP) is the political voice for APSCUF faculty and coaches. Since its inception in 1981, CAP has assisted faculty and coaches in making informed political decisions. CAP is a nonpartisan organization that supports candidates who will advocate for APCUF’s goals and prioriteies.

Why you should donate to CAP? When you contribute to APSCUF/CAP, you beome involved in the political process. Your CAP donations support candidates for state office who will advocate for public higher education and have strong records on labor, education and budget issues.

APSCUF/CAP members have the opportunity to: ❖

Attend fundraising events

Build relationships with policymakers

Make important endorsement decisions

Assist candidates who support APSCUF goals

Participate in golf outings to support candidates

To find out more about APSCUF/CAP, download the CAP brochure available online here. Visit APSCUF’s member’s forum (login required) to view APSCUF/CAP’s recommendations for elections.


Over the past week, I have heard from dozens of colleagues with questions about the impact of the university's response to the coronavirus pandemic. Now that KU is committed to completing the semester through online classes, we have a clearer picture of what we as faculty members will need to do to finish the semester successfully. Here are answers to some questions that have come up repeatedly in my correspondence with colleagues. I have been in regular contact with President Hawkinson, Provost Zayaitz, State APSCUF, and our local executive committee to get clarity on these items. There will be no reduction of or disruption to faculty pay this semester. Because of the disruption to the semester and the switch to online classes, we are working at the state and local level to remove any requirements for SRIs this semester. We are also looking to make state and local agreements to adjust the timelines for PET committees on campus. For faculty members who are up for tenure and/or promotion, there will be no change whatsoever in your overall timetable. There may be some minor adjustments to due dates for the tenure and promotion committees to finish their work, but this will not affect the overall process for any of you. There is no expectation that the semester will be extended at this time. Since we are losing a week of class contact, faculty are expected to adjust the course material into the remaining weeks. Although nonessential employees (which includes faculty) are expected to work from home, faculty members will, as I noted in an email yesterday, have access to their offices during this time. Advising will still take place this semester. Faculty members will conduct advising either over the phone, through videoconferencing or email, or through some combination. Student teaching has been canceled for the time being because K-12 schools are also closed. Supervisors should consider alternate assignments for students. In the meantime, PASSHE is seeking clarification from the Pennsylvania Department of Education about waivers for the 12week classroom experience for student teachers. In the case of internships, there is a bit more flexibility. If the sponsoring agency is still open or is willing to let the intern work from home, that is fine. If not, the supervisor can work individually with the student to develop alternate assignments. All university-related travel is canceled at this time. Hiring committees cannot bring candidates onto campus right now, obviously, but they may arrange to conduct phone and video interviews. We will seek further clarification on how hiring committees should proceed as the situation goes forward.


Tom Stewart 7


APSCUF-KU Open Social Once again, APSCUF-KU hosted an open social at Saucony Creek for all members to mingle and enjoy great food after the rep council meeting. Thank you to all who came. Spending time enjoying each others company is part of what makes our union at KU great.

Volunteers Needed! Our union’s strength is equal to the hard work of our membership. If you are an adjunct, tenure-track, or tenured faculty, APSCUF-KU has a broad variety of committees that need your help. They include membership, mobilization, student liaison, grievance, academic concerns, public relations, and many more. Faculty interested in active service for tenure and promotion dossiers will find it in our committees. Adjuncts interested in conversion also have many opportunities. Interested? Contact Sarra Guisse in our local office at sguisse@apscuf.org, 610-683-4277, or fill out a willingness to serve form here.




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March 2020 Newsletter  

March 2020 Newsletter  

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