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Faculty contract negotiations begin

Negotiations for the next faculty collective bargaining agreement have begun. Read APSCUF’s brief press release here.

Members: Faculty and coach negotiations surveys will go out next month, running Oct. 12–20. See the State APSCUF newsletter (login required for archive access) for details. Not yet an APSCUF member? Click here to learn how to join APSCUF.

President Mash: ‘Our work has just begun’

APSCUF President Dr. Kenneth M. Mash at the Capitol in August. Photo/Kathryn Morton

Dr. Kenneth M. Mash, who began a new APSCUF presidential term in June, looks forward to rebuilding his relationship with APSCUF members and hopes all members will become more involved in the organization.

“By getting involved, you learn a lot more about academia and public higher education,” Mash said. “That is a side benefit for faculty members; they get to understand the way these institutions operate. There is something extraordinarily fulfilling in knowing you aren’t just working for yourself but for others. I do not think everyone has to devote themselves entirely to APSCUF, but at some point in their careers, members should make a point to dedicate some time involved with their APSCUF chapter and/or State APSCUF. It’s about being part of something that is bigger than yourself.”

Mash wants to remind members that, while APSCUF may not always have the legal authority and control that Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education does, we are smart and we must put that to use in how we organize ourselves to create the best institutions possible.

“This is a very turbulent time, and I know I am capable of serving our faculty with everything I have,” Mash said. “Our work has just begun.”

—Madison Johnson,
APSCUF intern, summer 2022


More about Mash:

Dr. Kenneth M. Mash was elected in April as president of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties. Mash, who previously was president from 2014 to 2020, also has been involved in State APSCUF as state meet-and-discuss chair and vice president. Mash is a political-science professor at East Stroudsburg University, where he directed the ESU honors program. His research interests include judicial politics, constitutional law, and political theory. He graduated from Queen’s College in 1987 and pursued a master’s and Ph.D. in political science from the Pennsylvania State University.

APSCUF intern: ‘Invaluable’ experience built connections, sparked interests

I accepted my final internship offer with APSCUF and was overwhelmed with excitement. After spending my first college years in a world recovering from a pandemic and slowly returning to in-person activities, I was eager to participate in a hybrid internship experience. While I spent many days in front of my computer completing projects and attending Zoom meetings, I could not be more grateful for Sean (Crampsie, director of government relations) and Kathryn (Morton, communications director)’s commitment to providing me the best in-person days at the State APSCUF office.

Shippensburg University student Madison Johnson interned with APSCUF’s government-and-communication department this summer. Click here to learn more about APSCUF internships.

As a political-science major, spending days in the Capitol were extremely interesting and valuable. I attended fundraisers, sat in on the house Rules Committee, and spent many hours networking with lobbyists, senators, and state representatives. When I wasn’t in Harrisburg, I completed projects including research and policy analysis. I am extremely grateful to have had this experience during the peak of budget season, as it provided me a different perspective compared with that of the classroom.

While my interests were heavily geared toward government relations, knowledge in the world of communication and public relations is extremely valuable. I spent many days discussing various writing projects, proofreading newsletters, conducting interviews, and honing my professional writing skills.

To conclude my internship, APSCUF President Dr. Kenneth M. Mash and I took to the set of “Behind the Headlines” to discuss student debt and higher-education funding in Pennsylvania. The complexity of public relations is often overlooked, so having this experience has been extremely insightful.

My experience with APSCUF has been invaluable. I could not be more grateful for the opportunities that I have had through this organization. This internship has allowed me to build incredible connections while sparking new interests. If you are looking for an internship experience that will allow you to participate in your field, hands on, then you should apply for an internship with APSCUF. You will not regret it.

—Madison Johnson,
APSCUF intern, summer 2022

Tom Stewart: A new role as APSCUF treasurer

Tom Stewart

Tom Stewart was elected as APSCUF treasurer in April 2022. He was the APSCUF chapter president at Kutztown University for the past four years. Prior to his work as APSCUF chapter president, Stewart was elected as an APSCUF department representative and delegate.

“My time as treasurer has been great so far,” Stewart said. “I have gotten to know the State staff pretty well, so it has been a great experience.”

Stewart’s responsibilities include presenting the treasurer’s report at executive-council meetings and legislative assembly, preparing the annual budget, and approving expenses.

Stewart’s involvement in APSCUF sparked after observing his parents as Shippensburg University faculty, and later graduating from Shippensburg with a master’s degree.

“I wanted to be involved and make sure I keep learning about APSCUF,” Stewart said. “I wasn’t sure what opportunities were there, but I wanted to step up and see how I can contribute.”

He plans to incorporate leadership skills from his previous APSCUF positions into his position as treasurer, including maintaining accessibility for those with questions or concerns.

“I plan to keep that up in this new role,” Stewart said.

—Madison Johnson,
APSCUF intern, summer 2022

Where past APSCUF interns are now

APSCUF is committed to providing Pennsylvania’s State System of Higher Education students the opportunity to intern with the union’s public-relations and government-relations department. Students from all 14 State System campuses are eligible to apply for APSCUF’s internship. We reconnected with some past interns to discuss the impact of this internship on their careers and professional development.

Abbey Ford (APSCUF file photo)

Abbey Ford was the intern in the summer of 2019. Since graduating from Millersville University in 2019, Ford has worked on various electoral campaigns, spanning from the New York City Council election to the presidential election of 2020. She currently works for the Democratic Association of Secretaries of State as the associate director of operations.

“Many of the skills and lessons learned during my internship are easily transferable into the world of electoral politics,” Ford said. “Both with union work and with campaigns, you have to be an effective communicator and be able to bring coalitions together to reach your desired goals.”

Alexandria Mansfield (Photo courtesy of Alexandria Mansfield)

Alexandria Mansfield interned in the winter of 2016–17.

“Anyone who is considering the internship should absolutely give it a shot!” the Indiana University of Pennsylvania graduate said.

Mansfield is the growth-and-development reporter for the Florida Times-Union, where she pitches and researches stories, conducts interviews, and writes articles.

Prior to her current job, Mansfield held positions as a political reporter, education reporter, copy editor, and managing editor at various newspapers.

“The skills you learn in a public- and government-relations role — from public speaking to networking to more about how these jobs work and who is in them — are unparalleled,“ Mansfield said. “An internship like this is a great experience for any college student and can be extremely helpful in testing out career opportunities.”

Lindsey Newton (APSCUF file photo)

Slippery Rock University graduate Lindsey Newton interned for APSCUF in the summer of 2017. Newton became the service coordinator for the Human Services Administration Organization in Pennsylvania, responsible for making referrals to long-term treatment facilities, tracking patient progress until discharge, and managing after-discharge services including therapy and medication management.

“This internship solidified my interest in social policy,” Newton said. “I am excited to explore the policy side of government relations in the future.”

Melissa Stough (Photo courtesy of Melissa Stough)

Melissa Stough was the intern during the summer of 2021 and earned a bachelor’s degree from Kutztown University. Stough is attending Kutztown University for the M. Ed. program in student affairs in higher education administration. Since completing the APSCUF internship, Stough has held multiple positions, including intern at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and online course facilitator at Columbia University.

“I would say research and communication were the areas most enhanced by the APSCUF internship,” Stough said. “I learned how to communicate with legislators and other stakeholders in Harrisburg and beyond. I felt empowered and passionate about the advocacy work I was doing with APSCUF, and it has definitely influenced the opportunities I look for now.”

Brendan Leahy (Photo courtesy of Brendan Leahy)

Fall 2017 intern Brendan Leahy works for the Pennsylvania Medical Society in their association-management division. Some of his responsibilities in this role include managing finances, planning meetings, and overseeing the basic governance of nonprofit organizations. Leahy discussed how beneficial the internship was in preparing him for the basic day-to-day operations of the organization.

“APSCUF is pretty similar to the operations of my current organization,“ Leahy said. “I loved jumping into this role at PMS due to the background knowledge I had obtained from APSCUF.”

The Shippensburg University graduate described communication as the biggest skill he developed during his internship.

“Creating messaging to reach target audiences and broader audiences is a skill that APSCUF helped shape,” he said.

As a communication/journalism major, Leahy was excited that the internship provided him with an experience in government relations.

Corrinne Ulrich (Photo courtesy of Corrinne Ulrich)

Corrinne Ulrich interned in summer 2016 and is a graduate of Mansfield University

“APSCUF was my first professional position,” Ulrich said. “I learned how to hone my writing skills with various articles I was tasked with writing. I also learned the administrative side of various social-media platforms, which helped me through my career when needing to advertise job openings on social media.”

Ulrich works in human resources for Stephenson Equipment in Pennsylvania. Some of her responsibilities include interviewing, handling payroll, offering positions to job applicants, and managing new-hire orientation.

“My internship with APSCUF was great and solidified my desire to work in HR,” she said.

Kyle Bower (APSCUF file photo)

Bloomsburg University graduate Kyle Bower interned during the summer of 2020. Kyle is currently working as an account coordinator for Prosio Communications in Roseville, Calif. Prosio Communications is a public-relations, marketing, and community-outreach firm that specializes in public health and safety. Bower assists in creating messaging on behalf of government agencies.

“My writing and communication skills improved dramatically during my time with APSCUF,” Bower said. “Before APSCUF, I did not feel particularly comfortable speaking face to face with people, and my writing skills were still developing. Working at APSCUF acted as a springboard for my professional life, and I’m incredibly grateful that they gave me that opportunity.

“APSCUF certainly increased my confidence, which helped me in job interviews, and has been extremely beneficial for communicating with superiors and clients.”

Sydney Miller (Photo courtesy of Sydney Miller)

Fall 2018 intern Sydney Miller is an associate at Ridge Policy Group, a lobbying firm in downtown Harrisburg that is responsible for state representation of client interests before the Pennsylvania General Assembly. Miller develops and maintains relationships inside and outside the Capitol.

“APSCUF was a great opportunity to learn more about the public-relations side of politics/labor unions while also getting to learn more about the happenings in the Capitol,” Miller said. “The internship gave two different perspectives all in one. It helped to develop my reading and writing skills while also learning the best way to pick out key items in legislation.

“My time at APSCUF solidified where I wanted to be in politics. I knew I wanted to help my community in a broader way but was unsure of how to get there. Seeing how the APSCUF community came together for a common goal proved that engagement and determination was important.”

Click here to read more about the APSCUF internship. The 2023 application will be posted in the fall.

—Madison Johnson,
APSCUF intern

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