Category Archives: Meetings

Countdown… Thursday, November 20th, 5:15pm @ TC3

This Friday, November 21st, will mark the 30th day since we informed President Haynes that a majority of TC3’s adjuncts have signed authorization cards indicating their desire for union representation and the 30th day since we requested that the College “voluntarily recognize” the TC3 Adjunct Association. On the eve of the 30th day — at 5:30pm this Thursday, November 20th — TC3’s Board of Trustees will hold its next regular monthly meeting (open to the public) and…. YOU are invited! We’ll meet up first, at 5:15pm, in the Fireside Café, on the first floor of the Main Building on the Dryden campus (closest parking is in Lot #4) and then proceed together to the Board meeting in the Sprole Boardroom (Room 200, near the Empire State wing of the building) with the goal of arriving a few minutes before the 5:30pm start time. The Trustees plan to discuss the union in an executive session immediately following the regular meeting so if you are a member of the TC3 community or a resident of Tompkins or Cortland county please join us for this important opportunity to let the Trustees know we want them to respect the decision of the majority of TC3 adjuncts. Earlier today President Haynes informed the Union that he would not  voluntarily recognize the TC3AA. While disappointing, that is the College’s legal right. However, what made the rejection more disappointing (and somewhat disturbing) was the assertion by President Haynes  (later repeated in a repeated in a press release issued by the College) that the Administration has doubts as to our majority status. It’s odd since last week, as media coverage of the TC3AA started picking up (like in The Ithacan, The Lansing Star, 870 WHCU, and 14850, to name a few) we started hearing of TC3 Administration’s that about whether or not we have achieved majority support amongst TC3 adjuncts. For example, in an article that appeared in last week’s edition of The Ithacan, one member of TC3’s administration is quoted as saying, “If the union is going to come into existence, we want to be confident that it is supported by the majority of people it wants to represent.” Apparently this same administrator also told the Ithacan reporter that the fact that only 100+ adjuncts had signed on to a public letter of support was in and of itself cause for concern since those adjuncts do not constitute a majority of the 250’ish adjuncts teaching this semester at TC3. We guess it’s not as obvious as we thought but not every adjunct who signed a union authorization card was willing to announce to Administration (let alone the world) that they had done so. But, WHEW, it’s not every day we get an opportunity to clear up a misconception so easily! We certainly DO have a strong majority (in fact, we have a strong majority even of the somewhat inflated list that TC3 provided to us which included several managers who would not be eligible for union representation). All that’s needed is to count the cards in a way that confirms our majority status but does not violate our commitment to respect the wishes of the many adjuncts who are reluctant to publically state that they signed a union authorization card. A local elected official was willing to help us out by acting as a neutral third party and comparing the names on the signed union authorization cards to the names on TC3’s list to confirm that a majority of the adjuncts listed on TC3’s list did indeed sign a union authorization card. But on Friday, President Haynes summarily rejected the local elected official’s offer. The offer still stands and we’ll make it again to the Board of Trustees on Thursday. Though technically it’s not to late for President Haynes and the Board to change their mind and agree to voluntary recognition, the second “highest road” they can take is to agree that when PERB confirms our majority status and then seeks to certify the TC3AA that the College will not then waste taxpayer money by engaging in any legal challenges  in an effort to derail or delay our decision to form a union.

We hope to see you Thursday at 5;15pm.

Questions? Please contact us at


Our Message to the TC3 Board of Directors, “Don’t Waste Financial Resources and Community/Employee Good Will on Delays”

Post BOT

(L-R) Robert Earle, Gregg Weatherby, and Sherry Tacktill after the October 23rd BOT meeting

On Thursday, October 23rd several TC3AA Organizing Committee members attended the October meeting of the College’s Board of Trustees. Robert Earle, an adjunct instructor in English and Philosophy read a statement to the Board while Gregg Weatherby, also an instructor of English who had read his own statement to the Tompkins County Legislature on Tuesday, passed out a letter signed by over 100 TC3 adjuncts urging President Haynes and the Board of Trustees not to waste money on lawyer and delays.

Below are Robert Earle’s remarks to the Board. The letter from adjuncts (which you can still add your name to) can be found here.

Mark your calendars: the next meeting of the TC3 Board of Trustees is scheduled for Thursday, November 20th at 5:30pm in the Ronald W. Space Board Room.

Dear President Haynes and Members of the Board of Trustees:

Speaking on Agenda Point #14A: Board of Trustees Retreat: We believe the following will be valuable information to consider during that retreat.

I am an adjunct, a member of the TC3 community, and a member of the Organizing Committee of the TC3 Adjunct Association. It is on behalf of that organization that I now speak. TC3 tenure track faculty, as well as professional and support staff have all had union representation for some time. Many of our counterparts at other institutions also have union representation. Now we feel it is our turn.

We see unionization as a benefit not only for adjuncts at TC3 but for our students and the institution as a whole. We all know
that building relationships with faculty is a critical factor in student success, especially at an institution like TC3, which has a large population of non-traditional students. But it can be difficult for students to build relationships with instructors who may not be at the College the next semester. We believe union representation and a fair contract will be a crucial component to helping TC3 not only attract but also retain the most qualified and dedicated adjuncts for years to come. We want to get started on that goal as soon as possible.

Yesterday, the President received our NYSUT representative’s mailed letter announcing the formation of our union and asking him to voluntarily recognize the TC3 Adjunct Association, NYSUT,/NEA/AFT,/AFL-CIO as the exclusive bargaining agent of TC3 adjuncts. We urge you to respect our wishes for voluntary recognition.            

Because of the widespread support for union representation, there is no question that TC3 adjuncts will have a union. The only question left is if the Administration and Board will adversely affect College funds (not to mention employee and community good will) by needlessly wasting resources on legal fees and forcing us to go through a hearing for union recognition at the Public Employment Relations Board.

The TC3 Adjunct Association looks forward to a cordial and productive relationship with the College and, of course, we also look forward to continuing our hard work and dedication in serving the needs of our students. We await your prompt response.

Robert Earle, speaking on behalf of the Organizing Committee of The TC3 Adjunct Association

Field Trip to Ithaca’s Old Court House

Say “ORGANIZE!” TC3AA Organizing Committee Members (L-R), Sherry Tacktill, Gregg Weatherby, Nancy Crane, and Cynthia Coleman plus Theresa Alt from the Tompkins County Workers Center, gather outside the Old Courthouse after they addressed Members of the County Board of Representatives.

Say “ORGANIZE!” TC3AA Organizing Committee Members (L-R), Sherry Tacktill, Gregg Weatherby, Nancy Crane, and Cynthia Coleman plus Theresa Alt from the Tompkins County Workers Center, gather outside the Old Courthouse after they addressed Tompkins County Legislators.

On Tuesday, October 21st, several members of the TC3 Adjunct Association Organizing Committee attended the semi-monthly meeting of the Tompkins County Legislature  to address the legislators and ask for their help in our union organizing drive of TC3 adjuncts. Theresa Alt, a community resident and a member of the Tompkins County Workers Council, also spoke in support of TC3AA.

The core message to the legislature was simple: “TC3 adjuncts need, want, and deserve a union. Please tell President Carl Haynes and the TC3 Board of Trustees to respect our wishes and voluntarily recognize our union. Please tell them not to waste taxpayer money fighting us.” The details of the message were often moving as Cynthia Coleman (Sociology), Nancy Crane (Modern Languages), Sherry Tacktill (English) and Gregg Weatherby (English) told their personal stories which touched on everything from continuing to teach as an adjunct at TC3 even after finding fulltime employment elsewhere because of a passion for teaching, to working seven days a week (including weekends at the Ithaca  Farmers Market) to try to make ends meet as an adjunct, to how adjuncts teach the majority of the college’s courses yet are not paid a living wage, to the struggle faced to be assigned classes again after a six month medical absence spent fighting Stage IV cancer.

Several of the legislators were openly supportive in their comments that followed. We are hopeful we can count on the Tompkins County Legislators’ help in the days to come as we press the TC3 Administration and Board of Trustees to voluntary recognize the TC3 Adjunct Association as the union for TC3 adjuncts.

The “Community” in Tompkins Cortland Community College

County taxpayer dollars help fund community colleges. TC3 gets 25.1% of its funding through local (county) sources.

Tonight, at 5:30pm the Tompkins County Board of Representatives are holding their semi-monthly meeting at 121 East Court Street in Ithaca.

Come tell our legislature to tell TC3 management that they should not waste taxpayer monies on legal fees to fight adjuncts’ right to organize a union. TC3 management should take the high road and voluntarily recognize the TC3 Adjunct Association.

You’re Invited — Union Meeting on Friday, September 19, 2014 at 4pm

Dear TC3 Adjunct Faculty Colleagues,

We are writing to invite you to join us this Friday, September 19th at 4pm in the College Teaching Center (on the second floor of the Baker Commons) for the first informational meeting of the semester of the TC3 Adjunct Association.

We are pleased to report that in just the first few weeks of the semester there has been an impressive outpouring of support for the union and many o you have volunteered to assist us in the challenging (but exciting) task of attempting to make sure that no adjunct faculty member “falls through the cracks” and we reach all adjunct faculty to solicit their input and opinion and to encourage their support and participation as we build a strong and democratic organization for adjunct faculty at TC3.

The agenda for this Friday will include discussion of:
*Union 101 — Nuts and bolts of what is a union. How and why did a union organizing campaign for TC3 adjunct faculty come about?
*What are the benefits of an adjunct faculty union for us? How will it be beneficial to students and TC3’s educational mission?
*What’s realistic (and what’s not realistic) to expect when we negotiate a contract?
*What does TC3 Administration think about our union organizing drive?
*Where are we in the process of forming a union? What’s next?

There will also be plenty of time for questions!

We encourage ALL adjunct faculty to attend this meeting but particularly those who have not yet signed an authorization card and have questions or concerns about forming a union. Please reply to this email to let us know whether or not you will be able to attend this meeting You may also contact any of us directly. We look forward to seeing (and meeting!) many of you this Friday.

On Behalf of the TC3 Adjunct Association Organizing Committee,
Herman Altmann (Biology), Betsy Caughey (English), Robert Chapman (Criminal Justice), Cynthia Coleman (Sociology), Nancy Crane (Spanish), Robert Earle (Philosophy), Elizabeth Grant (English), In Shik Lee (Graphic Design), Kristin Lovelace-Ross (Math), Randy McGory (CAPS), Barbara Need (English), Jaclyn Pittsley (English), Jessica Ryan (Sociology), Pat Sewell (Environmental Science), Lorraine Sinclaire (English), Sherry Tacktill (English), Gregg Weatherby (English), Steve Weed (English), Butch Westlake (Sociology), Michele Whitecraft (Chemistry), Diane Williams-Altmann (Biology), Brandy Williams-DeBottis (Psychology), Sarah Wolff (English)