Louisiana State University Chapter
American Association of University Professors
Academic Freedom for a Free Society


LSU Policy Issues

AAUP National office

LA State Conference

Local chapters

Why Join AAUP?

Become a Member



Why join the American Association of University Professors (AAUP)?

The officers of the LSU Chapter of AAUP (AAUP-LSU) are often asked: “What does AAUP do for me? Why should I pay the steep membership dues? ”

We hope this page will convince you of the importance of joining the AAUP. See below for how to pay your LSU Chapter dues

On Tuesday, August 30, 2005, the citizens of Louisiana watched New Orleans fill with water. For many faculty members, the feeling of horror was mixed with another feeling that was difficult to describe: We knew that this would happen one day, but no one had heard us. The destruction of New Orleans was a human-made disaster, one that was created by not listening to those whose job it was to know, namely scholars and scientists at universities.

Since then, all of us, even university faculty, have come to realize that we are not protected from the ravages of a devastated economy and population. At the LSU
Health Sciences Center in New Orleans, tenured and untenured faculty members have been furloughed starting on December 1, most with only one to eight days’ notice. This experience sent shockwaves through an already depressed faculty, many having lost everything they owned. Our colleagues at the LSUHSC were caught unawares, not least because tenured professors had relied on their tenured status to protect their jobs.

AAUP-LSU in Baton Rouge was contacted, and it advised on the need to organize the faculty, to collect firm data, and to develop a strategy to ensure that the furloughs and eventual dismissals would follow the established principles developed by the AAUP. It contacted National AAUP, which responded immediately, assuring assistance in examining the situation facing the faculty at several universities that have declared financial exigency under a “force majeure”. It met with the Executive Committee of the LSU Faculty Senate to discuss the situation and to plan how to assist our colleagues. AAUP-LSU attended the meeting of the Faculty Senates of the LSU System in Alexandria on December 10, where Commissioner of Higher Education, Dr. Joseph Savoie, answered questions. At that meeting, AAUP-LSU raised the issue of the manner in which plans for exigency had been implemented on certain campuses, and Commissioner Savoie promised to look into the matter.

It is unclear how the situation will develop for our colleagues at campuses in crisis, but their plight is instructive for the faculty at LSU. Shared governance between the faculty and university administration is crucial to ensure strict adherence to academic and professional principles, and shared governance can only be maintained by faculty involvement. At LSU, the Faculty Senate and AAUP-LSU have a track-record of working together on issues that affect the working conditions of the faculty, such as PM-35, PS-104, the review of administrators, and the raising of admission standards for students. AAUP-LSU assists faculty members before and
during the processing of their grievances through university channels. AAUP-LSU also advises the Faculty Senate and individual faculty members on the academic principles that were established by the AAUP and are widely accepted as the gold standard in academia. It is due to this collaboration -- the Faculty Senate working from inside the university and AAUP-LSU working as an independent organization -- that shared governance and the working conditions for the faculty at LSU are comparatively good, as several colleagues, who have moved from LSU to other universities, have testified.

Nevertheless, the work that is required in order to maintain shared governance at LSU is shouldered by a tiny minority of the faculty: Only 56, of about 1,300 faculty, are members of AAUP, and only about 60 faculty volunteer to serve on the Faculty Senate. As we can learn from the recent events, it is easy to be caught unaware. We faculty know that hurricanes and other disasters, some less tangible, will occur again and that it is only a matter of time and luck until we are the ones directly affected. Will we faculty be ready with a fair policy for dealing with financial exigency and a fair and effective implementation of those plans, or will we be
caught unaware?

Faculty have generally been socialized to work alone and are, therefore, often skeptical of group behavior and group activities. But they also know, and teach students, about the benefits of concerted actions by groups. It is time that this expertise be put into practice at LSU. Joining AAUP-LSU as a dues-paying member would be a first step in this direction; a second step would be to become involved in the various activities of the Faculty Senate and AAUP-LSU. Please click the link in the left column to join today.

First they came for those at Xavier,
and I did not speak out
because I was not at Xavier.

Then they came for those at Tulane,
and I did not speak out
because I was not at Tulane.

Then they came for those at LSUHSC,
and I did not speak out
because I was not at LSUHSC.

Then they came for me at LSU,
and there was no one left
to speak out for me.

Paraphrased from Pastor Martin Niemüller

Dues of the LSU Chapter of AAUP

  • Full-Time: $10. Teacher, researcher, or similar academic appointment at an accredited college or university.
  • Entrant: $5. Nontenured faculty, and either new to the AAUP or new to a full-time appointment; for the first four years of membership.
  • Joint: $5. Person whose spouse or partner is a full-time member. (One Academe subscription).
  • Retired: $5.
  • Part-Time: $2.50. Faculty paid on a per-course or percentage basis.
  • Graduate Student: $2.50. Enrolled at an accredited institution within the last five years and not eligible for another active membership. category.
  • Associate: $5. A non-voting membership for all other supporters, including administrators and the public.

    Those wishing to join, or to renew their membership in, the LSU Chapter should send a check, payable to "AAUP LSU Chapter," to our treasurer, who, currently, is:
    Prof. Kent Mathewson
    Department of Geology
    Louisiana State Univeristy
    Baton Rouge LA 70803

    LSU faculty who are members of the national or state AAUP are not automatically members of the LSU Chapter; chapter dues must be paid separately from dues to national and state.

    Payment of chapter dues covers membership in the chapter for 12 months from the date of payment.

    Chapter dues cannot be paid at the national AAUP website (www.aaup.org); that website accepts dues only for national and state.

    Thank you for supporting the LSU Chapter.