Filling vacancies for adjunct professors takes quite a bit of time, apparently. While there’s no shortage of qualified candidates, it is just a matter of finding the right professor for the right teaching job.
Adjunct Professor Link seeks to make this process as quick and easy as possible. The website, founded by Kathleen Gibson, helps both higher education and professors.
A graduate of Valparaiso University in political science and a Juris Doctor, Gibson has taught graduate courses in law and humanities. Her experience as an adjunct professor and as a university administrator.
“I understood the difficulty of finding a job, having to find a personal contact to put me in touch with a school.” Gibson said. “More recently as an administrator, I found out the difficulty of finding good adjunct instructors.”
Adjunct Professor Link, which Gibson describes as sort of a hybrid between a social network and job search site, allows adjuncts to create a profile free of charge. They can upload their personal information from their existing social network profiles such as Facebook or LinkedIn, while providing further information on their qualifications, such as their field, experience, credentials and location. They can also post pictures and video, and share their professional achievements such as recommendations or links to their published works.
Members can join as one of two sets of educators. One, Professional Educator, consists of professors looking to teach full time, mainly career faculty seeking to eventually attain tenure. The other set, Expert Instructor, refers to educators with a specific skill set or expertise that is qualified to teach. For such instructors, teaching is generally a secondary profession.
“[They] could be older professionals looking for a second career,” Gibson said, “or individuals trying to stay current in their profession, or to share their experience. They can be very valuable in the classroom.”
Universities pay a subscription fee to gain access to Adjunct Professor Link’s profiles, and search by certain criteria to find the right individual for the job. According to Gibson, a big criteria is simply geography, but they can search under such subject as discipline, years of experience or even teaching style.
The site also features a blog in which professors or universities can post content or start discussions. However, Gibson stipulates that the point of the site really isn’t inter-professor communication or networking.
“We’re more focused on helping adjuncts be found [by universities],” Gibson said.
So far, Adjunct Professor Link’s focus is only on the Northwest Indiana area. However, plans are in place for expansion in the near future.
“The goal is to take on a second market in January,” Gibson said. “Probably the Chicago Market, then establish other markets across the country.”