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PTL Deadline for Professional Development Fund applications

Submitted by Staff on Mon, 10/16/2017 - 14:24

The deadline to submit an application is December 15, 2017; Follow the steps to get prior approval from Department Chair or Director and the Dean and, then, send to Nancy Carvalho via email: ncarvalho@oq.rutgers.edu.

Read the official announcement from the Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, Barbara A. Lee: PTL Professional Develepment Fund, 2017-2018

The Part-Time Lecturer faculty chapter spearheaded the idea of having a Professional Development Fund available. The union has negotiated the amount of money available for these awards for several contracts, increasing the amount every time an Agreement was reached with RU administration. This round of PDF for 2017-2018 is the last one under the current contract, which will expire on June 30, 2018. PTLs are mobilizing to negotiate the next Agreement and all PTLs are encouraged to get actively involved in order to have a strong membership advocating for improvements in all the professional part-time faculty's terms and conditions of employment at Rutgers.

The most important criterion to keep in mind when writing a proposal as a PTL seeking funds for your professional development is:

You must demonstrate that the professional development activity will have direct subsequent benefit to Rutgers students in the classroom(s) where you are teaching. Each award letter in the past has carried the same phrase: This PDF award is for a professional activity "which is related to the courses you are teaching." The award letters also said that "the Fund was established to assist PTLs in pursuing professional development activities related to their instructional role at Rutgers."

Funding requests may be for activities in Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Summer 2017, or Summer 2018.

PTL leadership encourages as many PTLs as possible to apply.  We want to be able to use the entire $60,000 fund allocated for each year because this will continue to demonstrate that the fund amount is still too small.

GUIDELINES to apply for funds under the PTL Professional Development Fund:

PTL Employee's Full Name
Department/decanal unit/campus
Amount of funding requested
A detailed budget outlining the use of funds
Semester during which funds will be expended
Project statement, including how the project relates to professional activities directly related to improving the PTL's service as an instructor teaching courses at Rutgers (limited to one page)
Endorsement by Department Chairperson or Program Director
Approval by the Dean (Note: This level of approval is a new requirement under the 2015-2018 Agreement)
After endorsement by Department Chair or Program Director and approval by the Dean, the request for funding should be sent via email to Nancy Carvalho at ncarvalho@oq.rutgers.edu.

In other words, there are three critical steps for submitting a request:
First, submit your request proposal to the Department Chairperson or Program Director for review and endorsement.
Second, seek approval from the Dean. Only applications that are endorsed by the Department Chairperson or Program Director and the Dean may be submitted.
Third, after receiving endorsement at the department/program level as well as decanal level approval, send these approval documents with your request to Nancy Carvalho via email:  ncarvalho@oq.rutgers.edu

FAQs on the PTL Professional Development Fund process

How much is available in the Fund? $60,000.00 for each academic year under the contract (2015-2018).

What is the purpose? To reimburse PTLs for money spent in professional development activities specifically related to their pedagogic needs in connection with and related to their professional activities at Rutgers. Your proposal should demonstrate that the professional development activity will have direct subsequent benefit to Rutgers students in the classroom(s) where you are teaching.

Who administers the Fund? The Center for Teaching Advancement and Assessment Research (CTAAR) administers the PTL Professional Development Fund. The Center for Teaching Advancement and Assessment Research supports teaching and learning through a variety of areas: pedagogy and faculty development, assessment programs, instructional technologies, classroom technologies, and faculty and staff information technologies. Here is the contact info:

Center for Teaching Advancement and Assessment Research
Rutgers University
116 College Avenue
New Brunswick, NJ 08901
(848) 932-7466
info@ctaar.rutgers.edu

Who is eligible to apply? PTLs in the bargaining unit (i.e., teaching during the semester the funds are expended) are eligible to apply for money from this Fund: For example, funds may be reimbursed for activities that have already taken place or that are planned for a future date. This time frame also includes activites during the summer as well.

How can funds be claimed? Save all receipts as necessary supporting documentation. Funds are only reimbursed based on the proper receipts being presented.

What types of activities are eligible for professional development funds? A sample includes the following: attending conferences or presenting a paper at a conference; purchasing materials for teaching (e.g., films, books, software); research expenses; expenses when conducting workshops; training in professional skills related to your teaching assignments at Rutgers; preparation of teaching materials (e.g., producing your own DVD for student use).

What types of activities or things are NOT eligible? The purchase of laptops is definitely not an eligible item for professional development funds. The Rutgers University Center for Teaching Advancement and Assessment Research has stated that departments should make laptops available to Part-Time Lecturers. Also not eligible for reimbursement are general professional development activities (e.g., even if you are graduate student and the activity relates to your development as an academic in your field of study, unless you show how it directly helps students you are teaching right now at Rutgers).

As stated above, Rutgers administration has only agreed to reimburse professional development funds to PTLs who demonstrate that the activity directly relates to that PTL faculty member's classroom teaching with Rutgers students.

How will PTLs be notified about their request? The award results for professional development funds are announced via letter to each PTL from the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, currently Barbara A. Lee. Nancy Carvalho in the Office of Academic Labor Relations (OLR) at Rutgers University will be in touch with each PTL awardee regarding how PTLs will be able to receive the award. The RU administration must also notify the PTL Faculty Chapter and we post the list in a News Item on our website as well as sending out an announcement to PTLs in the bargaining unit via email.

The Center for Teaching Advancement and Assessment Research reviews all requests for merit and relevance. The Center will award funds only for those proposals that it determines to be meritorious and is not required to award the entire fund amount of up to $60,000.00, if it determines there are not sufficient meritorious proposals warranting funding. Unused funds are not rolled over to the next year.

Decision Announcement:
The Office of the Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs indicates that the announcement of the awards for the Academic Year 2017-2018 will be made by February 15, 2018.

Distribution begins with submission of the appropriate receipts. We have $60,000 available in the fund for each year under the current contract--and we have agreed that all $60,000 are available for distribution but will not be rolled over, if any funds remain.

Funds for the future depend on a vigorous showing of PTLs submitting proposals for professional development activities for which they desire reimbursement. Armed with the data from a strong demand for reimbursement, we will be well-positioned to advocate for more funds in the next round of negotiations for a PTL successor Collective Negotiations Agreement when the current contract expires on June 30, 2018.

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