In the midst of teaching during the pandemic, a Point Park University professor was not too surprised when she received an email informing her she would no longer be employed after the spring semester.
Kendra Ross, a 45-year-old Black woman from Pittsburgh, used to work in the music industry and she knew what it was like to be in a cutthroat environment. So much so that she joked with former coworkers at Universal that she packed a box by the door just in case. Still, Ross felt optimistic about teaching at Point Park when she first started.
She was approached by other faculty to teach in the business program in 2018 and received her doctoral degree at the university two years later. After teaching as an adjunct faculty member, Ross was placed on tenure track in 2019. Then, in February 2021, 17 faculty members, many of whom were from marginalized backgrounds, were among those told that their contracts wouldn’t be renewed for the fall.