The American Association of University Professionals (“AAUP”) is the leading professional association devoted to advancing academic freedom, shared governance between faculty and administration, and professional values.  Since its founding in 1915, the AAUP has established 148 chapters throughout the nation (including nine chapters in New York state alone).

The Albany Law School Chapter of the American Association of University Professionals (“ALS-AAUP”) was formed in November of 2013 to respond to wide-spread faculty concerns over issues of academic freedom and governance.  Shortly after its formation, a majority of the faculty joined its membership.  The ALS-AAUP membership is broadly constituted of clinical, long term contract, doctrinal, un-tenured and tenured faculty.

In light of the primary role that AAUP has played in promoting educational principles, both the accrediting body American Bar Association (“ABA”) and American Association of Law Schools (“AALS”) expressly refer to AAUP’s definition of “academic freedom” in their rules. See ABA Accreditation Appx. 1 (“Statement on Academic Freedom and Tenure”) (providing that the ABA’s statement on academic freedom “follows the ‘1940 Statement of Principles on Academic Freedom and Tenure’ of the American Association of University Professionals”); AALS Bylaw Section 6-6(d) (providing that a “faculty member shall have academic freedom and tenure in accordance with the principles of the American Association of University Professors”); AALS Executive Committee Regulations, Chapter 4 (Procedure for Committee on Academic Freedom and Tenure).

The faculty rules of Albany Law School similarly define academic freedom, and thus the employment protections stemming there from, by expressly incorporating the principles of AAUP.  See ALS Faculty Handbook p. 1.

Membership in the ALS-AAUP provides faculty of any status an opportunity to promote principles of academic freedom and shared governance.  Our profession must respond to the challenges facing legal education in a well-reasoned manner which respects procedural protections and preserves academic freedom.  We encourage you to become a member of AAUP and of our Chapter.  You may join ALS-AAUP at the following site: http://www.aaup2.org/dues1.html.  Membership in ALS-AAUP is confidential, and the identity of non-executive board members is not made available to the public or law school administration.

Should you have any questions concerning ALS-AAUP, please feel free to contact the Executive Board at alsaaup@gmail.com


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