faculty notified of potential job losses, perhaps in the hundreds, at Pennsylvania’s state-run colleges

PennLive reports that while the news of possible faculty job cuts at 10 of Pennsylvania’s 14 state-supported universities wasn’t a surprise, the information comes just days before the start of the 2020-21 academic year.

Notices went out to faculty union leaders at 10 of the 14 universities warning that faculty job cuts could be coming next spring for financial reasons. The State System of Higher Education wants to achieve $250 million in savings and efficiencies within the next two years to align its costs with revenues.

The notifications included an important reminder.

Having the contractually obligated retrenchment notices go out mid-summer is intended to allow time for discussions to take place between management and the union to try to avoid layoffs, said Jamie Martin, president of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties that represents 5,000 faculty members.


Alex Lockwood is a former student of mine. With her permission, I offer here a few words she posted recently on her Facebook page.

Fair warning if you want a fight, I won’t give it to you. You’re entitled to your own opinion.

I am scared. I am scared at what we are becoming. Yes, people have always fought over politics and differences of opinions, but never have I seen so many people basing their friendships and relationships on whether or not the person agrees with them. Basing someone’s character on whether or not they are a democrat or a republican. (I’m not talking about racism or anti-Semitism or things are based in morality) I’m talking about the disrespect of people because they think differently than you. I’m talking about shaming someone for their beliefs. I’m talking about trolling someone’s posts to attack their character versus having a conversation about differing ideas and being able to respect that person. I am terrified to voice my opinion on ANYTHING because I’m afraid someone will attack my character. That is not what our country is supposed to be about. We are supposed to have different ideas, we are supposed to be able to discuss them and come to understanding and reach across the isle to make America better. Instead I have witnessed family members attacking one another and their personal characteristics because someone is a republican when they are a democrat. I have seen friends blocking and removing friends from their lives because they are republican and their friends are democrat. 

Frankly, I don’t care what you are! You are a person and your ideas matter. Your thoughts matter. You should be able to voice your concerns, especially during an election year, without fear of scrutiny from those you love an care about. Your political party, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender, boy band of choice, taste in music, none of that changes who you are and what your character is. It doesn’t change if you’re a good person or not. 

If you treat me like an asshole, that’s how I judge you, not on your opinions. 

End rant. Good day. And I love you all! No matter what.