Academic Leadership: The Online Journal


Austin (2006) and Chait (2002) indicate that most faculty prefer tenured to non-tenured positions. The presence of tenure track positions is often equated with institutional excellence and tenure designations are often associated with status. The promise of secure academic employment makes the tenured position the gold standard of the academy. This preference for tenure is not limited to university faculty. Jacoby (2005) found that most young, part-time community college faculty desire fulltime tenure track positions. Older faculty members were not as enthusiastic in regard to tenure. The academic culture at community colleges appears to be evolving an employment desirability hierarchy where the ultimate perceived academic level is the full-time tenured position. Kater and Levin (2005) concur with Jacoby’s findings and note that tenured community college faculty share traditional governance decisions, including tenure recommendations. While community college faculty members may desire tenure systems, the question arises as to the whether or not tenure systems are beneficial for community colleges.