Getting Rich on the Backs of the Poor (Adjuncts)

Getting Rich on the Backs of the Poor (Adjuncts)

I've written about how higher education is just the next big bubble about to burst, how it's a grand scheme of a surfeit of schools putting millions into crippling with mediocre educations that leave them unemployable, unmarriageable, and living in their parents' basements after graduation. I've also written about the incredible higher-than-inflation rise in tuitions over the past 30 years that having nothing to do with supply and demand and everything to do with government pork for big banks supplying student loans.

But did you know that much of that money is not being spent on the top-notch education you thought your kids were getting? Instead they're hiring administrators and bureaucrats at an unprecedented rate, while sloughing off teaching to low-paid adjuncts who get slave wages and no benefits. Oh, and they have to pay union dues too, thank you very much.

Now the adjuncts are getting more vocal about it. Still, I wonder how many of those millennials out there demonstrating at #FeeltheBern rallies and for Hillary, demanding free tuition and free education and free everything, all the while decrying the so-called income gap and bloated CEO pay, realize that the adjuncts teaching them are suffering under their noses every day.

But then the students often don’t know to ask. If more of them learned how many of their classes are taught by poorly paid, unsupported teachers, even as their tuition rises, how would they react? Would they question the value of their education? Call for reform? Or would they do what I suspect I would have done if I’d known Harvey, the most valuable teacher in my undergraduate career, was an adjunct: burned with embarrassment, and never reached out to him after the semester closed, because I’d already received too much?

Written by
Domenico Bettinelli