Emergency Grants for contingent faculty members of the American Studies Association were proposed by the ASA Contingent Faculty Task Force and received full endorsement from the ASA Executive Committee in early Fall 2020. Funded by a one-time disbursement of money raised by the Solidarity Fund, and supplemented by a 50% matching fund from the ASA’s fiscal resources, these grants will respond to the immediate need of our contingent faculty members in response to the COVID-19 crisis. Each grant will be in the amount of $500 and may be used to help alleviate some of the financial strain on contingent faculty as courses are cancelled, contracts are suspended, or faculty have to pay out of pocket to adjust their technological needs to keep up with online teaching.

What Is It?

The Solidarity Fund Emergency Grants (30 grants in total) provide $500 each to eligible members and will be awarded based on a lottery selection of thirty (30) contingent faculty members who complete and submit an application and who meet the terms of eligibility. 

Who Can Apply?

Contingent faculty who meet the following eligibility requirements are encouraged to apply: 

  1. Applicants must have been an ASA member for at least one of the past five (5) years. We use this guideline because we understand that it is often difficult for contingent faculty to continue their memberships in years when they are unable to attend and present at the annual conference. We thus account for lapses in membership.
  2. Applicants must be “contingent faculty,” meaning they support themselves through part-time or full-time employment by an institution of higher education via a contract of variable duration, and they receive few to no other forms of remuneration or support by their department, such as conference travel, research funding, or healthcare, benefits which other kinds of precarious workers (i.e. graduate students) may receive as conditions for their study. Faculty will be considered contingent and eligible to apply if they are: (a) currently employed by a contract; (b) unemployed sometime within the last 12 months; or (c) entering the 2020-2021 school year without the guarantee of a contract.
  3. Applicants must submit a complete application. The application will require the following information to be detailed in a cover letter: name and contact information; the school and department with which the faculty is associated; confirmation of their current or past employment via a website link, pdf of a course catalog listing, redacted paystub, or Chair or Dean email affidavit; the years in which membership has been maintained over the past five (5) years. Additionally, for the sake of our information gathering (not qualification), please include a short statement of any other support (i.e. grants, emergency funding, et al.) you may have received as a contingent faculty member in order to mitigate disruptions to your employment or financial security. 

How to Apply?

  1. Fill out the Grant Application Form (now closed for applications).
  2. Upload a single PDF including:
  • a cover letter of application;
  • documentation of current or past employment, such as a website link, pdf of a course catalog listing, redacted paystub, or Chair or Dean email affidavit detailing adjunct employment status;
  • the years in which membership has been maintained over the past five (5) years; and
  • a short statement (included in your cover letter) about any other COVID-19-related support you’ve received from higher ed institutions – which will help the ASA in compiling potential resources for adjunct faculty colleagues.

 

When is the deadline?

Because these are Emergency Grants, the timeline is quick, so grant money reaches those applicants selected by lottery before the end of the year.

The Solidarity Fund Emergency Grants will open for applications on October 7. Applications will be accepted until the deadline of November 15. Notifications to selected grantees will go out on/around November 20, and checks will be mailed out in the beginning of December.  
 

Where to contribute?

If you are a member of the ASA who has the means to contribute, we welcome your gift.  Please visit Donate Now - or text "Solidarity" to 44-321. Members can also make a tax-deductible contribution to the fund when submitting dues for membership renewal.

The American Studies Association is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization chartered in the District of Columbia and eligible to receive tax-deductible donations and contributions.