An introduction to the Adjunct Faculty Council

The Adjunct Faculty Council

The Adjunct Faculty Council (AFC) began with the simple idea of providing the adjunct faculty at the University of St Thomas with a voice. The AFC is a 21-member council elected to serve 2-year terms. The AFC was formed after the adjunct faculty at St Thomas rejected a union proposal 136-84 in July of 2014. It began with the formulation of an adjunct task force which wrote the current bylaws and set the first elections in motion. 

Since the spring of 2015, the AFC has met once each month during the academic year to address matters concerning to adjuncts and to foster communication and collaboration for all adjuncts. The AFC has worked to allow adjuncts to be included in governance and to improve benefits for all adjuncts in all colleges at St. Thomas. An Adjunct Resource Guide has been produced, Adjunct Senators have been elected, Faculty Development Grants have been awarded, and fall and spring forums have been held in an attempt to communicate with as many adjuncts as possible. 

The AFC invites all adjuncts at the University of St. Thomas to participate. Join us in the continued effort toward opportunity and enrichment. 

Please consult the bylaws of the Council on the this website under Adjunct Faculty Governance or

Adjunct Faculty Council at St. Thomas

What is the role of the Adjunct Faculty Council?

According to the bylaws, the role of the Council is to make recommendations regarding matters of common concern to adjuncts; to serve as a forum to foster communication and collaboration at all levels of the University; to promote and maintain strong morale among adjunct faculty and a high quality work environment; to represent adjuncts to the various faculty committees and university committees and taskforces; to promote opportunities for adjunct faculty development; to promote effective communication and issues resolution between adjunct faculty and administration; and to promote understanding and fairness with regard to benefits, and employment.

Please consult the bylaws of the Council on the this website under Adjunct Faculty Governance or

Governance Bodies need Adjunct Faculty

Dear Adjunct Faculty,

Adjunct Faculty, are growing increasingly visible and active in the One University! We have secured many improvements for ourselves over the past two years. Now is the time to consider how you can become involved our next academic year. We need you to consider nominating yourself for the following governance bodies. Nominations may be submitted to the Adjunct Faculty Council between March 27 and noon April 6.  Elections will run from April 18 and May 1.  Please see the instructions on how to self-nominate at the end of this announcement. 

1.     The Adjunct Faculty Council

The Adjunct Faculty Council (AFC) has eight open seats for the next academic year, and we want you to fill them!  All adjunct professors who have taught for at least two years at St. Thomas, or who have taught four courses at St. Thomas (not necessarily consecutively), are eligible to self-nominate for a seat on the Council. Since the spring semester of 2015, the AFC has been working diligently on behalf of all Adjunct Faculty to secure our inclusion in University and Faculty governance, and to improve our working conditions, benefits, and compensation. See our webpage for more information:

It is hard to imagine how far we have come!  Adjunct faculty have our own Council, which runs parallel to the Faculty Senate, on which two adjunct faculty sit as full voting members. We are also full voting members on nearly every university and faculty committee, including, for example, the University Budget Advisory Committee and the Faculty Committee on Undergraduate Studies.

When elected, you will contribute to monthly meetings at the St. Paul campus (which can be attended by phone) and join one of our three standing committees, which increase our impact as a Council. For example, our AFC Governance Committee secures our inclusion in The Faculty Handbook, which regulates all UST faculty. Our Nominations and Elections Committee ensures that we fill all of our seats on our Council, the Faculty Senate, and all other committees. And our Compensation and Benefits Committee works with the UST Administration regarding faculty development funds, tuition remission, health-care benefits, and other changes. Together the Council has also created an Adjunct Faculty Resource Guide linked to our webpage.

Yet there is so much more to achieve as Adjunct Faculty! The Council conducted a survey last spring and hosted an Adjunct Faculty Forum this spring to learn which advances were most important to you, two of which are job security and improved communication from and with the AFC.  We are also in the process of creating a “Best Practices” guide for deans and department chairs. Participation of new members on the Council is imperative to our progress!  Just think how much you could contribute!

Here are the Colleges or Schools and number of seats open for September 2017:

College of Arts and Sciences: 3

College of Education, Leadership, and Counseling: 1

Opus College of Business: 1

School of Engineering: 1

School of Social Work: 1

School of Law: 1


2.     Faculty Senate

The University of St. Thomas Faculty Senate has an open seat for an adjunct faculty member, and we would like you to consider running for the open seat. This election is an exciting opportunity to get involved in the university’s shared governance and to help adjunct faculty voices be heard. The role of the faculty senate can be found at:

Currently, one senate seat is filled with an adjunct faculty member from the College of Arts and Sciences, so the open seat has to be filled by an adjunct faculty member from one of the other schools or colleges at the University.

 Adjunct faculty who are eligible to serve on the Faculty Senate must have already taught for two years at St. Thomas, or have taught at least 4 courses at St. Thomas.

 Adjunct faculty in the School of Social Work teaching in the joint program with St. Kate’s since fall 2013 are eligible.

 Adjunct faculty from College of Arts and Sciences are not eligible for this seat, but will be eligible to run in the spring 2018 election.

The term is two years and begins fall semester of 2017. The Faculty Senate meets every other Tuesday over convocation hour (noon to 1:15pm) between September and May. Meetings are in person and split between the St. Paul and Minneapolis locations.  

3.     University and Faculty Committees with open seats for September 2017:

For the past two years, Adjunct Faculty have been included in nearly all the university and faculty committees. This gives us an extremely important voice and visibility. You do not need to be an AFC member to nominate yourself for a committee seat.  Unlike becoming an AFC or Faculty Senate representative, committee seats are assigned by AFC leadership.

Here is the list of university committees with open seats:

Grievance and Discipline

Fringe Benefit Advisory

Library Advisory

Technology Advisory

University Assessment

Here is the list of university committees with open seats:

Faculty Development

Teaching Evaluation

Core Curriculum

Academic Review, International Education Committee (ARCIE)

How To Self-Nominate for any of the above seats:

Nomination may be submitted to the Adjunct Faculty Council between March 27 and noon April 6.  Elections will run from April 18 and May 1.  Nominees will be notified of election results within a week of elections.

To submit your self-nomination, please email a Word document with the following information to:

  1. The specific seat(s) you are self-nominating for
  2. Your name and contact information (email and phone number)
  3. School or college in which you teach
  4. Department(s) at St. Thomas in which you have taught
  5. Number of years/courses that you have taught at St. Thomas
  6. One paragraph describing the reasons why you want to serve for the position you are interested in, and what makes you well suited to represent your fellow adjunct faculty from your school or college, or to represent the entire adjunct faculty if you are running for the Faculty Senate.

 It should be noted that a small stipend is also available to the Adjunct faculty member who fills seats on the AFC, Faculty Senate and university or faculty committee seat.

 If you have any specific questions about the nomination or election process, please email

We can’t wait to hear from you!