Tags: Education | kean university | china | campus | communist party | job

Kean University Campus Seeks 'Communist Party' Applicants

By    |   Friday, 24 Jul 2015 08:21 AM

The Council of New Jersey State College Locals is calling for the state legislature's higher education committee to investigate Kean University's Chinese campus after learning the school is advertising for positions that give preference to members of the Chinese Communist Party, The Daily Caller reports.

New Jersey’s Kean University, a public school funded by American tax dollars, has posted job openings for its satellite campus in China stating "membership in Chinese Communist Party preferred," The Daily Caller reports.

Wenzhou-Kean University is billed as a dual degree-granting, English-speaking, Chinese-American institution jointly established by Kean University and Wenzhou University.

Seeking communists for the positions of residence life specialist and student conduct specialist — both jobs are advertised in English on Kean’s website — has sounded alarm bells with the Council of New Jersey State College Locals, an affiliate of the American Federation of Teachers, comprised of faculty and staff unions at nine New Jersey public colleges, including Kean, according to Insider Higher Ed.

The stipulation appears to violate both U.S. employment and New Jersey anti-discrimination laws, according to a press release issued by the council, which notes that the university’s hiring practices and application criteria "also raise serious concerns about the existence of academic freedom at Wenzhou" considering both of the positions work closely "with students."

Steve Young, executive director of the Council of New Jersey State College Locals, is calling for the New Jersey legislature's higher education committee to investigate Kean's campus in Wenzhou.

"How much control does China really have over this deal," Young asked.

According to the council, "other U.S.-based universities with campuses and academic partnerships in China seemingly do not prefer Communist Party membership in employment nor do they request information about an applicant’s personal information or political status.

"See for example recent job announcements for New York University’s Shanghai campus and Kansas' Fort Hays State University China partnerships."

Kean officials say it was Wenzhou University’s directive to state a preference for Communist Party membership and other questions — including nationality, gender, marital status, politics status, and height — that may be deemed discriminatory in the U.S.

Kean is responsible for hiring faculty members while Wenzhou University hires administrators, The Daily Caller said.

According to Insider Higher Ed, other American colleges and universities with campuses abroad typically state "repeatedly" that "they hire as if hiring in the United States."

"I think it’s a very problematic acquiescence to norms that wouldn’t fly here, and it’s not entirely clear that they can escape obligations to civil rights laws extraterritorially," according to Michael A. Olivas, the William B. Bates Distinguished Chair of Law and director of the Institute for Higher Education Law and Governance at the University of Houston.

Kean is the third largest public university in New Jersey, and the largest producer of teachers in the state, according to its website. The Daily Caller reports that it’s a "little-known college that U.S. News ranks so low it doesn’t bother printing the ranking."

Kean alumni, according to the website, include Democrats holding elected state and national offices, such as New Jersey Sens. Nicholas Scutari, Nelloe Pou, U.S. Rep. Donald Payne Jr. and Shavonda Sumter, a member of the New Jersey General Assembly.

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The Council of New Jersey State College Locals is calling for the state legislature to investigate Kean University's Chinese campus after learning the school is advertising for positions that give preference to members of the Chinese Communist Party.
kean university, china, campus, communist party, job
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2015-21-24
Friday, 24 Jul 2015 08:21 AM
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