AAUP’s 1984 censure of MCC removed

AAUPLeaders of the American Association of University Professors (AAUP) discussed several topics at the group’s annual conference June 15-19 in Washington, D.C. One was the censure imposed on Metropolitan Community College more than three decades ago.

The academic association unanimously voted to lift the censure from 1984, which had been enacted over the termination of eight tenured faculty appointments. Over this past year, MCC’s Kathy Walter-Mack, chief of staff in the chancellor’s office, has been working with AAUP leadership to discuss the censure and its possible removal.

“We are appreciative of the objective review the AAUP conducted of our current circumstances and are pleased with the removal of the censure,” MCC Chancellor Mark James said. “This action is welcomed by both MCC leadership and faculty leadership.

“I would also like to commend the work of the late Mr. Jordan E. Kurland, AAUP associate general secretary, who worked diligently with our chief of staff, Kathy Walter-Mack, to achieve this outcome.”

The AAUP said in lifting the censure that Metropolitan Community College has since made amends to the affected faculty members and adopted new policies intended to protect faculty rights.

At the time the censure was imposed, MCC leaders said they had needed to eliminate the positions in response to financial difficulties and declining enrollments. The AAUP argued that enrollment had stabilized and that no state of financial exigency existed, and that the college’s real motive was to reduce the number of full-time faculty members.

The other censures removed included one from 1963 that the AAUP imposed on Grove City College in Pennsylvania, and a sanction imposed on Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Mo., in 1994.