Obamacare

Obamacare: Universities Have to Cut Work Hours for Students, Profs

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Obamacare signing
White House

Universities everywhere are scaling back on part-time work opportunities for students and adjunct professors in order to comply with the Affordable Care Act. According to Campus Reform:

Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) is restricting student work because of compliance issues associated with the Affordable Care Act (ACA), commonly known as Obamacare.

In an email last week, MTSU President Sidney McPhee explained that "due to our interpretation of the reporting requirements of ACA," graduate assistants, adjunct faculty members, and resident assistants are barred from working on-campus jobs that exceed 29 hours of work per week.

Now, they cannot take on multiple campus jobs. …

Capping hours associated with on-campus employment is quickly becoming the norm. Since 2012, at least 111 colleges and universities have limited adjunct professor course loads, capped student employment hours, or reduced hours for part-time faculty according to a list compiled byInvestor's Business Daily.

I mentioned previously that the 30-hour cap was going to really hurt student journalists unless Congress approved some kind of exemption. But Obamacare's ill-effects are everywhere. Requiring employers to offer health insurance to 30-hours-a-week workers carries the same, entirely predictable result as requiring employers to pay 30-hours-a-week workers more money: fewer 30-hours-a-week workers.

NEXT: The Enlightened Regulators of Hanoi?

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  1. Requiring employers to offer health insurance to 30-hours-a-week workers carries the same, entirely predictable result as requiring employers to pay 30-hours-a-week workers more money: fewer 30-hours-a-week workers.

    Let me go find my shocked face so I can properly react to this unexpected outcome.

    1. This is THE LAST TIME I will remind people to keep their shocked faces on hand and ready for application.

  2. To be fair, it’s near impossible to work 30 hours a week while taking a full course load. At least not if you are in a STEM field.
    The students doing this either must be taking mickey mouse classes or they are only taking 2-3 classes a semester. or they are failing.

    1. Or they could be alternating semesters of school and work like I did as a coop.

    2. To be fair, it’s near impossible to work 30 hours a week while taking a full course load. At least not if you are in a STEM field.

      How is this fair?

      I don’t give a shit if millenial Woodward and Bernstein are failing eskimo lesbian cultural studies or acing advanced climate modelling; Chocolate Nixon raising all our taxes to the detriment of college-level reporting is still shitty as hell.

    3. Or they are willing to work their asses off now in return for better circumstances later.

    4. Or some of those jobs also give college credits.

      1. Or the job is somewhat of a cake walk so you can do school work during breaks in the job.

    5. Or they worked small hours during the school week and long hours during breaks.

    6. The problem isn’t the work load, the problem is in getting the courses to fit in with the work schedule. I didn’t have a lot of trouble doing this initially, but as you start taking 300-level courses you find they are only offered once a semester and if the prof wants to schedule it during your work hours you have to decide on working or finishing up the degree.

  3. MTSU President Sidney McPhee explained that “due to our interpretation of the reporting requirements of ACA…”

    Did they need to employ a team of psychics and scryers to divine this information from the tome of the ACA?

    1. I could devote thousands of words to the various interpretations, unclear guidance, and general headaches this is causing at my university. I won’t. I will just say that a lot of people knew (and said so) in 2011 that this clusterfuck was coming, so these consequences should surprise exactly nobody. No doubt we will soon have a whole new administrative office devoted to Obamacare compliance.

      1. Jobs!

  4. Foreseeable consequences are not unintended.

  5. I’m assuming this will fuck over the adjunct profs also – if it is meta-physically possible to fuck them over more?

    1. I’m assuming this will fuck over the adjunct profs also

      I’ve seen said “fucking” in person. In my department adjuncts have had their salaries cut in half. Of course, they can make it up by adjuncting in another institution. (Most do.)

      And to think that 99.9999 percent of them voted for “free” healthcare.

      1. I hesitate to ask . . . do any of them see the connection between their misery and their voting habits? Or do they only see the connection between their misery and their preconceived notions of corporate greed?

        1. I’m gonna go out on a limb and guess they want “Moar, Harder.”

        2. Of the ones I’ve spoken to briefly about the topic, they seem to still be in denial. To be fair, I haven’t had a real in depth conversation about it as it’s a bit impolitic to be all “Hey! Your teaching load, and thus your salary, was cut in half forcing you to piece together a living by teaching at 3 different universities and/or community colleges! Let’s talk about that!”

          There are two adjuncts that I’m close with who are conservative, but they don’t really give a shit as this is their retirement job/hobby.

          1. There are two adjuncts that I’m close with who are conservative, but they don’t really give a shit as this is their retirement job/hobby.

            Which is probably how it should be. Put in a faculty that’s worked out in the real world most of their life instead of ensconcing themselves in academia since they were 18, and colleges would probably be a lot less intellectually inbred.

          2. Yeah, the question was kind of rhetorical. Liberal disillusionment is something you often have to overhear or read between the lines.

  6. Wreckers! Saboteurs!

    1. They’re unpatriotic. We should boycott them because they don’t want to pay their fair share!

  7. In an email last week, MTSU President Sidney McPhee explained that “due to our interpretation of the reporting requirements of ACA,” graduate assistants, adjunct faculty members, and resident assistants are barred from working on-campus jobs that exceed 29 hours of work per week.

    I need the expert opinions of commentariat: Is it morally acceptable to fap based on a feeling of Schadenfreude?

    1. The tears of others is the most precious lube.

    2. I always ask progs crying about how the US spends less on education than it used to (verifiabley false, in any event) why universities can’t cut back on the ever-increasing bureaucracy of administration or the hundreds of thousands of bucks on new facilities, and I’m inevitably met with silence or outright denial.

    3. Only if you donate the proceeds to charity.

  8. Only 8% of them.

  9. Requiring employers to offer health insurance to 30-hours-a-week workers carries the same, entirely predictable result as requiring employers to pay 30-hours-a-week workers more money: fewer 30-hours-a-week workers.

    Wait, are you saying that there are predictable laws of economics in the same way there are laws of nature?

    Why didn’t you dirty libertarians tell Congress about that before they passed the ACA? Look at how much suffering you’ve inflicted with the decision to hoard your mystical knowledge of markets.

  10. The unintended consequences of government meddling.

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