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Computer choice part of GCC negotiations

Computer choice part of GCC negotiations
Glendale Community College and the Glendale College Guild agreed on giving instructors the right to choose an Apple or PC during the latest round of non-salary collective bargaining agreements that will be in effect from 2018 to 2021. (Paul Sakuma/Associated Press)

Apple or PC?

That ongoing question of the computer age has become a choice for union-represented instructors at Glendale Community College.

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College officials and the Glendale College Guild came to an accord on that issue and others in the latest round of non-salary, collective-bargaining agreements that will be in effect through 2021.

Contracted faculty members were already guaranteed office space that included a desk and chair, while computer choice wasn’t always an option.

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“We started off with a Microsoft platform, a PC-based platform. That’s what we offered. Obviously, our whole enterprise-resource planning system is shaped around that platform,” said Anthony Culpepper, the college’s executive vice president of administrative services.

“When an instructor comes onboard, we wanted to put in the contract that we would provide them with a computer. Back when that was done, it was already presumed that it would be a PC-based computer. As times went on, some people became more accustomed to Mac. They love Apple,” he added.

Due to this agreement, each faculty member can now select which computer and system best fits their needs.

“People have become accustomed to certain platforms that they’re used to using,” Culpepper said. “So, one of the goals of the campus is to have what we call a ‘shared-governance philosophy,’ and we also try to support the instructor’s class as they have certain rights as instructors to share and form their class as needed.”

Regarding benefits, instructors also saw stipends doubled to $200 for conference attendance and travel.

Some of the agreements amounted to a summer cleaning, of sorts, as instructional television courses and the Project for Adult College Education, otherwise known as PACE, were removed from the contract negotiations. PACE and television program courses had already been eliminated at the school.

“These are actually outdated sections of our collective-bargaining agreement,” Culpepper said. “We now have online courses and so these programs that used to facilitate that process, like instructional television and PACE, those are no longer used and they’re outdated terms. We’re still very much engaged in online education.”

Other negotiated items were tweaks, such as adjunct or student service faculty members now being informed two weeks prior to an evaluation. Previously, the contract called for a notice during the first academic month in the semester.

The college and guild also formalized the process for long-term, non-contract substitutes for instructors who will be out longer than two weeks.

“Individuals, full-time faculty members, would go out on leave and they would be gone for longer than two weeks, and we’d have this substitute come in and that person was not properly designated,” Culpepper said. “That’s changing. When we are aware that a faculty member is going to be out for longer than two weeks, we should already have in mind what this person’s designation should be.”

Armine Hacopian, a college board trustee, said she appreciated the non-contentious nature of the negotiations.

“I just want to say ‘thank you’ for all us coming together and reaching this point,” Hacopian said. “I’m looking forward to the future collective-bargaining agreements.”

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