AHA’s Two-Year College Task Force Begins Work

The ad hoc Two-Year College Task Force, which was established by the AHA’s Council in January 2009, has begun its work of exploring various issues relating to history faculty at two-year colleges. At the end of its three-year tenure, the task force is expected to present a set of recommendations to Council.

The task force, which was constituted in March 2009, consists of J. Frank Malaret (Sacramento City Coll.) serving as chair; Trinidad Gonzales (South Texas Coll.); Judith Jeffrey Howard (National Endowment for the Humanities, retired); Natalie Kimbrough (Community Coll. of Baltimore County); Kevin Reilly (Raritan Valley Community Coll.); and David A. Berry (Essex County Community Coll.) representing, ex-officio, the Community College Humanities Association.

The Two-Year College Task Force was prompted, among other things, by a recommendation of the Working Group on the Future of the AHA, which was concerned about the small number of faculty from two-year colleges who were members of the Association.

Purpose: The Working Group on the Future of the AHA recommended, therefore, that a new task force should be constituted to explore how to increase AHA membership of community college faculty by better serving their needs. The task force will also address the issues of part-time two-year faculty.

Plan of action: The task force will devote its first year primarily to gathering information. AHA staff has already begun collecting names and e-mail addresses of two-year faculty currently teaching history courses so that an e-mail survey of faculty can be conducted. The task force will hold open forums at the annual meetings of the AHA and at such meetings of other associations (like the CCHA, for example), as are financially feasible. Each year the task force will provide an interim written report to the AHA Council. In January 2012 the task force will submit to Council a draft final report, with a final version due no later than June 2012. The report will offer formal recommendations for future action, with some estimation of costs, for Council approval.

The task force efforts may also include commissioning articles for Perspectives on History and pamphlets and organizing annual meeting sessions on topics such as survey courses in higher education, a large percentage of which are taught by two-year college faculty.

The task force held its first meeting in Washington, D.C., in June 2009. Questions about the task force may be addressed to: Noralee Frankel. See also the resources for two-year college faculty available on the AHA’s web site.

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