© 2024 Kansas City Public Radio
NPR in Kansas City
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations

As Emporia State fires some tenured faculty, what is the future of tenure in higher education?

A modern building with a brick front and lots of glass windows with matte silver finish stands on a college campus with the words "Emporia State University Memorial Union" on it.
Carlos Moreno
KCUR 89.3
Emporia State University in Emporia, Kansas, was founded in 1863 and currently has an enrollment of 5,615 students.

Emporia State University recently fired dozens of tenured faculty members. What does that mean for the future of tenure at universities in Kansas and across the nation?

Last week, Emporia State University fired 33 tenured faculty members after the Kansas Board of Regents unanimously approved the school's justification to suspend tenure.

Max McCoy, a journalism professor who was among those laid off, wrote an opinion piece for the Kansas Reflector opposing the suspension of tenure just before the school's announcement. He says the university gave him no specific reason for his firing, only phrases like "realignment of programs" and "financial need."

KCUR's Up To Date was joined by McCoy, along with economist Richard Vedder, to talk about recent events at Emporia State and the future of tenure in American academia.

  • Max McCoy, journalist, novelist, longtime professor at Emporia State
  • Richard Vedder, distinguished professor of economics emeritus at Ohio University
Stay Connected
When I host Up To Date each morning at 9, my aim is to engage the community in conversations about the Kansas City area’s challenges, hopes and opportunities. I try to ask the questions that listeners want answered about the day’s most pressing issues and provide a place for residents to engage directly with newsmakers. Reach me at steve@kcur.org or on Twitter @stevekraske.
As Up To Date’s senior producer, I construct daily conversations that give our listeners context to the issues of our time. I strive to provide a platform that holds those in power accountable, while also spotlighting the voices of Kansas City’s creatives and visionaries that may otherwise go unheard. Email me at zach@kcur.org.
KCUR serves the Kansas City region with breaking news and award-winning podcasts.
Your donation helps keep nonprofit journalism free and available for everyone.