Why Should Faculty with Contingent Appointments join the IFO?

When you become a member, you ensure that your concerns, challenges, and priorities are
heard and fully represented by your union. Collective agreements set out the working conditions for faculty, including salary, workload, health and dental insurance, and other benefits. Collective bargaining provides union members with a voice to negotiate better wages, benefits, and working conditions.Without the collective bargaining process, unions would not be able to look out for the best interests of employees.

To fully support our community and become a member, sign a membership form here

By joining the IFO, you will be doing your part to help enhance and protect:

Teaching Workloads, Academic Freedom, and Quality Education

The IFO contract provides that faculty with an adjunct appointment may teach up to ten (10) credits per academic year. The IFO contract supports the full protection of academic freedom. This includes freedom to: develop innovative curriculum; research, and engage in civic issues.

A strong collective voice is the only way to protect these bedrocks of high-quality post-secondary education.


Fair Pay

The IFO has successfully bargained for pay raises for all adjunct faculty that match pay increases for all other faculty. The average union-represented worker earns 29% more than unrepresented workers. The IFO has fought for highly competitive wages and secured regular pay increases to ensure you are being paid equitably relative to your peers. Fair pay is best achieved through collective bargaining and strong union participation.

Fair pay is best achieved through collective bargaining and strong union participation.


Retirement Security

Faculty with adjunct appointments who work at least twenty-five percent time in an academic year (6 credits) become eligible for pension benefits. Once faculty members qualify they will continue to accrue pension benefits even if they fall below the initial qualifying threshold. 

Regardless of the number of credits they teach, faculty with adjunct appointments are also eligible for two voluntary tax sheltered savings programs accomplished through payroll deductions (403b, 457). 

The IFO has secured two retirement options for faculty to choose depending on their unique circumstances. IFO representatives worked with legislators to have faculty included in a defined-benefit plan under the Teachers Retirement Association (TRA) or the option of choosing a defined-contribution plan called the Individual Retirement Account Plan (IRAP). IFO staff work hard with retirement plan administrators and the legislature to ensure the plans are always meeting the best interests of faculty. IFO staff also conduct campus workshops and individual counseling sessions to help faculty make informed decisions on which retirement programs best fit their needs.

Without a strong union, you will lose the ability to protect your retirement benefits.


Faculty with adjunct appointments, their spouse, and dependent children are entitled to tuition waiver benefits equaling the number of credit hours taught. Tuition waiver benefits may be used to cover tuition, and in some cases fees, for undergraduate, graduate, and doctoral courses at any of the MnSCU four-year university.

Your union helps create a better life for you and your family through free high-quality education. 

Tuition Waiver


Faculty with adjunct appointments are granted three types of leave benefits. First, each faculty member may miss all or part of two class days each semester for illness or disability for themselves or their immediate family without loss of pay. Second, faculty may be absent from class for up to 5 days without loss in pay in the case of a death in the immediate family. And last, faculty with adjunct appointments are entitled to one day of paid emergency/personal leave per semester for situations not covered by the other two.

Your membership in the IFO helps preserve healthy and humane working conditions throughout your career.

Leave Benefits


The IFO promotes gender, race, national origin, LGBTQ+ and disability equity  in hiring, pay, and fostering a supportive work environment. IFO staff advocate to enforce the rights of traditionally underrepresented faculty. The IFO actively works to provide opportunities for faculty of color and American Indian faculty, women and LBGTQ+ faculty, and faculty with disabilities to develop and exercise leadership and a collective voice in the organization as well as the state universities.  

A strong and inclusive union ensures all faculty that “we have your back.”

Commitment to Equity and Inclusion


The IFO works closely with legislators and the governor each year at the Capitol to advance the interests of state university faculty during state budget and policy discussions. The state legislature must approve each contract the IFO negotiates. We track legislation, keep you informed, and arm you with the resources you need to influence public policy.

Your IFO membership helps bring your voice to the Capitol.

Legislative Advocacy


The IFO employs an unrivaled legal team with decades of experience in labor law and contract enforcement. These skilled and dedicated advocates effectively represent faculty whose contract rights have been violated.

A strong union ensures that your contract rights are enforced.

Contract Enforcement