Tenured Radical has a post on “Take My Phone. Please.” It’s a post that chronicles the economic downturn in publics and privates in California and offers a small idea for making a bad situation better.
I agree. We have two phones for eight faculty and few people use them. One faculty gives that number out to anyone she does not want to talk to (you know, the required phone number for sales, etc) so they call us instead of her and one calls about food takeout. I will gladly lend the non-cook my cell. I think you should take our phones, too.
Really our students do not use the phone to call us. They use the phone to text us. The school phones don’t work for that. So our students don’t need them either.
What other ideas have worked in institutions so that folks could help save money? My school cut $170M out of our budget in the last four years. In fact, we cut a little more and all the ft’ers (including staff) got a one-time $2000 pay hike. How’s that for incentive to cut more?
My school has an annual fundraiser for faculty conferences. Folks around town donate gifts and the faculty (primarily, but some staff) come and get good deals for less money. That money goes into a kitty and conferences not funded by the college, which is most, can be reimbursed for up to $400 for a presentation or $200 for attendance. It’s a lot of work, but fun. If you don’t have $$ but you have time, it’s a good thing. Service project too.
Full disclosure: I have been awarded a $400 scholarship from the fundraiser. I also bought a day at the shooting range at the fundraiser. Unfortunately I did not succeed in winning the bids for the designated parking place.