Facts about adjuncts at DePaul and nationwide

(Max Kleiner / The DePaulia)
(Max Kleiner / The DePaulia)

As some adjunct professors push to earn $15,000 per course, here is what you need to know about adjuncts at DePaul and across the country:

  • Adjuncts are defined as faculty paid to teach a specific course. Tenure and tenure track faculty often hold various other roles in the university and have additional responsibilities, but have more job stability and benefits.
  • DePaul adjuncts are paid between $3,000 and $6,000 per course, higher than the national average of just under $3,000 and slightly more compared to some other Chicago-area universities. 1,731 adjunct professors were employed by DePaul in 2014.
  • DePaul trends suggest that as enrollment fluctuates, so does adjunct employment. For example, enrollment and adjunct faculty employed by DePaul peaked during the 2011-12 academic year. But when enrollment declined 6.3 percent over two years, adjunct faculty saw a 7.8 percent decline in their ranks, nearly 150 fewer.
  • For some adjuncts, low wages and little benefits has led to juggling jobs at multiple universities, which they say affects their ability to serve students. Others, like Wanda Evans-Brewer who teaches at DeVry University and Concordia University, are on welfare. According to The Atlantic, nearly 25 percent of all adjuncts nationally receive some government assistance.
  • Four Chicago universities operate adjunct unions:  Columbia College, City Colleges of Chicago, Roosevelt University and the University of Illinois at Chicago.