NIA Report---November 2009 Staff Newsletter

Wednesday, November 25, 2009 1:23 PM | Allie Maloney

NIA Report by Dave Kallgren

Most recently the NIA was busy representing our members at Branch Director and Board of Trustee meetings. There is a full report posted on the NIA_NOLS website, but key takeaways were:

The financial management of NOLS during this recession has been truly exceptional, and this has been matched by the talent and dedication of our staff. NOLS is actually doing pretty well in very challenging times.

It appears that all the constituencies within NOLS --Trustees, management, field and in town staff--are in basic agreement that compensation remains a huge problem for the organization and significant steps need to be taken to address it as soon as our financial situation allows.

In the meantime, rather than demand money which isn't yet available, we have concentrated on building consensus on the compensation issue, which our poll indicates is the most critical concern of staff. Several members wrote short narratives about the challenges and rewards they find working for NOLS and these were shared with the Trustees.

The amount of overlap among constituencies at NOLS came up several times during the meetings. Many NOLS field staff, for example, also work as WMI instructional staff and/or in in-town positions. The NIA will be discussing how best we can represent this broader membership profile.

Other topics of discussion for us include staff travel, the proctor/aide situation, and selection criteria for accepting students. We are working to find a better web presence as well, and elections are going on for NIA Board members and President. Join us and participate.

The NIA is registered with the IRS and we can accept donations, though they are not tax deductible. Making a donation is as easy as paying dues, using the same mechanisms listed below. We have also created the Flamingo Foundation, an account specifically for making purchases to improve the quality of life for instructors and staff. Donations flagged as "Flamingo" will be used solely for that purpose, and we have received over $200.00 already. We will discuss how best to spend this money on the website, with the Board making the final call.

Think creatively.

Act collectively.

Join the NIA.

The mission of the NIA is to communicate and advocate instructor views and to work within the NOLS community to promote the school's mission and values

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