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APSCUF members continue to compile DACA resources

APSCUF’s September 2017 legislative assembly approved two statements about the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, one of which called for APSCUF to compile and post a list of local and statewide resources available to students (and staff and faculty) on our campuses whose immigration status is at risk in the wake of the recision of the DACA program.

Click here to view the list in progress. We invite members to contribute more via this link. If you have questions, email Tabetha Bernstein-Danis, chair of the state social-justice committee at bernstein@kutztown.edu or Seth Kahn, chair of the state mobilization committee, at skahn@apscuf.org.

Working People’s Day of Action

As the U.S. Supreme Court prepares to hear arguments in Janus v. AFSCME Council 31, workers across the nation plan to stand together for rallies and events. Here’s what’s planned for Pennsylvania:

Saturday, Feb. 24: Working People’s Day of Action

Canonsburg – Town Hall

Duncansville

Erie

Philadelphia: To join West Chester APSCUF at the Philadelphia event, email skahn@apscuf.org or cmalott@apscuf.org.

Sunday, Feb. 25:

Wilkes-Barre: Working People’s Rally at Luzerne County Courthouse

Monday, February 26:

APSCUF chapter activities: On Feb. 26 — the day of the oral argument — the mobilization committees on many of our campuses will hold events to highlight the benefits of union membership and the real threat posed by Janus. If you do not see any publicity for your campus, contact you chapter president.

Beaver: noon at the Beaver County Courthouse

Greensburg: 4 p.m. at the Westmoreland County Courthouse

Harrisburg: 11:30 a.m. at the Department of Labor and Industry

Pittsburgh: 8 a.m. at Mellon Square Park

Legislative assembly: Contract signed, resolutions passed


From left: Negotiations team members Margaret Ervin of West Chester University, left; Jamie Martin of Indiana University of Pennsylvania, second from right; and Chris Hallen of Bloomsburg University, right, sign the one-year contract. With them is Mary Rita Duvall, State APSCUF’s head of labor relations. View additional photos on APSCUF’s Facebook page. Photo/Kathryn Morton

Delegates from all 14 university chapters met Feb. 9–10 to pass resolutions, hear committee reports, and discuss new business related to quality, affordable higher education during APSCUF’s 193rd legislative assembly, held at Wyndham Gettysburg Hotel.

Resolutions tackled faculty harassment and the use of program review as justification for retrenchment. One resolution declares APSCUF’s support of Pennsylvania Promise. The Pennsylvania Promise plan — laid out in Keystone Research Center and Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center‘s report. “The Pennsylvania Promise: Making College Affordable and Securing Pennsylvania’s Economic Future” — outlines how to make higher education affordable in Pennsylvania.

With negotiations team members together, faculty negotiators took a few minutes to sign the one-year contract, putting it one step closer to press.

Legislators share thoughts on 2018–19 Pennsylvania budget proposal, higher education

Gov. Tom Wolf’s proposed 2018–19 budget includes an appreciated $15 million increase for Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education. After the governor’s budget address today, APSCUF spent the afternoon in the Capitol interviewing both Democratic and Republican leadership on the proposal and issues affecting higher education, including how members can advocate to keep the increase for the State System in the final state budget. (Spoiler alert: Contact your legislators and tell them your personal stories about why it’s critical for Pennsylvania to fund public higher education.)

State Rep. Joseph Markosek

State Rep. Joseph Markosek (We had some technical difficulties and finished his video in a second post.)

State Rep. David Millard

State Sen. Patrick M. Browne

State Sen. Judy Schwank

State Rep. Madeleine Dean

State Sen. Camera Bartolotta

State Sen. Jay Costa

State Sen. Vincent Hughes

State Sen. Andrew Dinniman

Dr. John Mansfield: “We are better because of him”


Dr. John Mansfield had been Mansfield University’s APSCUF chapter president since 2014. Photo/GK Visual

APSCUF continues to mourn last week’s passing of a great APSCUF leader, Dr. John Mansfield, associate professor of social work and APSCUF chapter president at Mansfield University.

APSCUF President Dr. Kenneth M. Mash eulogized Mansfield in his remarks to Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education’s Board of Governors last week.

“John, like the vast majority of my colleagues, viewed his membership in the professoriate not as an occupation; he saw it as a vocation,” Mash said. “He was kind. He was smart as whip. He was deeply concerned about people. He loved his students. He loved his discipline. He loved his colleagues. He loved his community. He loved Mansfield University. And he loved the work he did on behalf of his colleagues as chapter president. This is not hyperbole.”

Mash described how Mansfield, who died Jan. 23 at age 60 after a battle with cancer and concomitant complications, pushed through sickness and hardship.

“Any time I or others might suggest that he was entitled to step back from teaching and certainly from a leadership position in APSCUF, he would tell us that this was a big part of what he lived to do,” Mash said. “He was a fighter. And he always wore a smile and was deeply concerned about others, even as he went through the most difficult of times. He was and he will continue to always be an inspiration.”

Those who worked with Mansfield on his campus remember him as supportive and helpful.

“When we were working on increasing membership at Mansfield, (John) made a point to reach out to the fair share members, asked me to set up meetings with them and discussed the benefits of becoming a full member,” Linda Smith, Mansfield ASPCUF’s office manager, said. “We were a team! John loved his work he did at APSCUF, and we are better because of him.”

Bill Chabala, a past president of the Mansfield APSCUF chapter, described another of Mansfield’s personas: John the Boxer.

“John was the coach of the college boxing team and played an important role in helping numerous young men conquer issues and help them on the way to fulfilling lives,” Chabala said. “I’m not sure if he said this to anyone else, but when he and I were having a private conversation concerning an issue on campus and someone who could help resolve the issue was being less than helpful, John would say, with that sly little smile on his face (that those of us who knew him recognized), ‘Maybe I should just invite the person to the ring for a few rounds.’ Witnessing John’s boxing skills, I am sure the issue would be resolved quickly. John was slow to anger, but did pack a VERY mean right cross and left hook combination.”

When it came to settling matters at his university, Mansfield maintained a tradition of “trying to work together with management to resolve issues,” Chabala said.

“He understood the CBA and would help the administration understand that the contract is a COLLECTIVE bargaining agreement with both sides agreeing to the language it contains,” Chabala said. “It was important to John that the history of sitting together to resolve issues be maintained. This is not to imply that John was a pushover or would not forcefully advocate for the faculty; quite the contrary.”

The boxer and avid motorcyclist left big shoes to fill, Chabala said.

“While he is not physically with us any longer to offer his talents and time, he lives on through those he mentored and taught,” he said, describing Mansfield’s influence on and off campus. “Those are a few of the biggest differences he made: Helping people change their lives.”

Mansfield is survived by his wife, Julie Mansfield; twin daughters, Elizabeth and Alexandria (a student at Indiana University of Pennsylvania and winter 2016–17 APSCUF intern) Mansfield; two step-daughters, Micaela and Meghan Weber; and parents John C. (Cynthia) Mansfield and Nina J. (Robert) Rice.

* * *

Dr. John Mansfield listens to speakers at APSCUF’s legislative assembly in February 2017.

A life’s work:

1975: Graduated from Bishop Eustace Preparatory School in Pennsauken Township, N.J.
1993: Bachelor’s degree in social work from Florida Atlantic University
1993–94: Started his career in social work at Hospice by the Sea in Boca Raton, Fla.
1994: Master’s degree in social work from Barry University
1995–96: Program director at Children’s Case Management Organization in West Palm Beach, Fla.
1997: Became a licensed clinical social worker and joined the faculty in the social-work department of Florida Atlantic University
2001: Moved to Wellsboro and joined the social-work faculty at Mansfield University
2003: Doctorate in philosophy from Barry University
2014: Elected president of APSCUF’s Mansfield University chapter

* * *

The Mansfield University Social Work Club is collecting money for a scholarship to honor the late Dr. John Mansfield. Check donations may be made out to “Social Work Club” and mailed to Social Work Club c/o Dr. Tiffany Welch, 202 Pinecrest, Mansfield University, Mansfield, PA 16933.

 

State System Board of Governors approves one-year faculty contract


From left: Cynthia Shapira, Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education board chair; Interim Chancellor Karen Whitney; and APSCUF President Dr. Kenneth M. Mash sign APSCUF’s one-year faculty contract after the Jan. 25 Board of Governors meeting. Photo/Kathryn Morton

APSCUF’s one-year faculty contract moved closer to the printer today after Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education’s Board of Governors ratified the document during its quarterly meeting. After the meeting, Board Chair Cynthia Shapira, Interim Chancellor Karen Whitney, and APSCUF President Dr. Kenneth M. Mash signed the agreement. The document requires additional signatures before it heads to press. It goes into effect at the conclusion of the current contract, which expires June 30, 2018.

Read Dr. Kenneth M. Mash’s remarks to the Board of Governors – Jan. 25, 2018

APSCUF President Dr. Kenneth M. Mash’s comments as prepared:

Chairwoman Shapira, governors, Chancellor Whitney, presidents, and guests,

This morning, we at APSCUF are still reeling from the news that in the early morning hours last Tuesday, Dr. John Mansfield passed away after a long battle with cancer and concomitant complications. Dr. Mansfield began his career in social work at Hospice By The Sea in Boca Raton, Fla. He later became a program director at Children’s Case Management Organization in West Palm Beach, Fla., before joining the faculty in the social-work department at Florida Atlantic University. In 2001, he joined the faculty at Mansfield University, and in 2014 he was elected president of the Mansfield University chapter of APSCUF.

John, like the vast majority of my colleagues, viewed his membership in the professoriate not as an occupation; he saw it as a vocation. He was kind. He was smart as whip. He was deeply concerned about people. He loved his students. He loved his discipline. He loved his colleagues. He loved his community. He loved Mansfield University. And he loved the work he did on behalf of his colleagues as chapter president. This is not hyperbole. John struggled with his disease for years, and he had some very difficult times. But any time I or others might suggest that he was entitled to step back from teaching and certainly from a leadership position in APSCUF, he would tell us that this was a big part of what he lived to do. He was a fighter. And he always wore a smile and was deeply concerned about others, even as he went through the most difficult of times. He was and he will continue to always be an inspiration.

In an email exchange with his daughter, a student at IUP, she told me that APSCUF was his third family. His first was his actual family, whom he loved to talk and brag about: his wife, Julie Mansfield; his twin daughters, Alexandria and Elizabeth; his two step-daughters, Micaela and Meghan Weber; and his parents. His second was his students, whom he adored and to whom he devoted all the energy he could muster.

John is emblematic of your faculty and also your coaches in their caring for what they do.

Shortly after learning about John’s passing, I was due to attend a press conference being put on by the Keystone Research Center and the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center to announce their new proposal for affordable higher education in the Commonwealth. It was difficult to change focus, but in my head I knew that the subject of that proposal was something that John would have been for. He understood what we all understand: What we do as professors, as members of an academic community, as advocates, as members of APSCUF, are intertwined parts of our vocation.

Pennsylvania Promise plan aims to make higher education affordable for Commonwealth students

APSCUF President Dr. Kenneth M. Mash today pledged that APSCUF will do whatever it can to fulfill The Pennsylvania Promise, an affordable-tuition plan unveiled today at a press conference in the Capitol.

“We must make a difference, and we must provide opportunities,” Mash said at the event for the Keystone Research Center and Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center‘s report. “The Pennsylvania Promise: Making College Affordable and Securing Pennsylvania’s Economic Future” outlines how the Commonwealth could make tuition affordable for Pennsylvania students for about $1 billion per year. Click here to read the full report.

KRC and PBPC will further explain the report in a webinar 11 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 24, for which you can register here.

One of the report’s authors, Mark Price, KRC labor economist, will go live to answer questions 2 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 25, on APSCUF’s Facebook page. We welcome members, students, and other supporters of quality, affordable higher education to join the discussion. If you’d like to submit questions in advance, email qualityeducation@apscuf.org.

Senate Democrats recorded the press conference, which included statements from State Sen. Vincent Hughes, State Rep. Jim Roebuck, State Rep. Jordan A. Harris, and Daniel Le, a sophomore at Shippensburg University. Watch video of the full event here.


Graphics/Keystone Research Center and Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center

Today’s report is the fourth in a series by KRC and PBPC tackling upward mobility and higher education affordability in the Keystone state. Previous reports are:

Pennsylvania Higher Education at a Crossroads: To Boost Opportunity and Growth, Pennsylvania Needs to Invest in Higher Education (August 2017)

At Students’ Expense: Rising Costs Threaten Pennsylvania Public Universities’ Role in Upward Mobility (June 2017)

Pennsylvania’s Great Working-Class Colleges (April 2017)

A wonderful advocate: Dr. John Mansfield


Dr. John Mansfield addresses Mansfield University APSCUF members at a chapter meeting in April 2016. Photo/Kathryn Morton

Today we are all mourning the passing this morning of a great APSCUF leader, Dr. John Mansfield, associate professor of social work and APSCUF chapter president at Mansfield University. Dr. Mansfield was a wonderful advocate for his students and his colleagues, and we will miss him dearly. His family is in our thoughts during this heartbreaking time.

Visitation will be 5–7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 25, at Tussey Mosher Funeral Home, 139 Main St. in Wellsboro. Mass will be 9:30 a.m. Friday, Jan. 26, at St. Peter’s Catholic Church, 38 Central Ave. in Wellsboro.


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