The Pace Problem

While sitting in one of my Anthropology courses, we were given a chart to look at. It broke down the exact number of professors at Pace University based on their hiring type which includes full-time tenure, non-tenure, and adjunct also diving into their race. 

 

Full-Time Tenure

Non-Tenure

Adjunct

Total

White

146

242

646

1034

Black

8

14

55

77

Asian

23

30

61

119

Native American

0

1

3

4

Hispanic

6

16

54

76

Pacific Islander

0

0

1

1

2+ Races

9

8

16

33

 

As we watched this chart be written on the whiteboard, shock was across my classmates and my faces. With majors and minors offered like Latin American Studies, Latinx Studies and African/African-American Studies, who are teaching these courses? Having these white liberal professors teach the courses is not the same as having a professor who is of the ethnicity and/or you are getting a higher education in. Why should I, a black woman, think about minoring in African Studies if I can infer many of my classes will be taught by non-black professors. 

Another factor to consider is the wanting of a mentor. While my white peers can most likely find a mentor who is the same race and field as them, numerous other students would be put at a disadvantage as many professors of color as adjunct. Adjunct professors can only do so much. Being paid approximately with no job security, and running around from city campus to city campus, would not the time to fulfill the relationship of being a mentor to a student and numerous others. 

As only a freshman on my second semester here, I have picked up on Pace’s forcible inclusivity while not putting their money where their mouth is. There is a large billboard of a black Pace student but I can count the number of tenure professors on my hand? 16 percent of the school’s student population is “non-resident aliens” but they had a job listing for ICE on Handshake? Where do Pace’s morals stand if money is not involved?

However, this is not only a Pace problem. It’s an academic problem. This is seen all over the nation. Nevertheless, we can be the generation to change it as more students of color are going to secondary institutions to get their degree in the education field. As time goes on we can only be the change in the world and at institutions like Pace where the professors teaching us, look like us too.