On Aug. 5, Maryville College was given the honor of achieving “Greatest Colleges to Work For” recognition by the Chronicle for Higher Education. This year, the Chronicle of Higher Education had conducted the survey for the fifth consecutive year in an effort to find which institutions of higher education deserve to be considered one of the recognized institutions.
Overall, 294 institutions were represented in the survey, while only 103 colleges and universities of all types around the country received the recognition, four of which can be found in Tennessee. MC joins the ranks for the first time with Lee University, Austin Peay State University and Sewanee.
In the subcategory of small 4-year colleges, Maryville, along with Sewanee, joined 26 other colleges in this achievement. When the colleges were reviewed for this recognition, each college was ranked in 12 categories, which included job satisfaction, appreciation and diversity.
Using the survey, the Chronicle of Higher Education saw that MC’s professors boasted about two aspects of their jobs in particular: how clear their tenure requirements were and the environment in which they work. In its category, the college was one of ten schools with a great teaching environment and one of another ten with a clear tenure path.
For a professor to qualify for tenure, MC would have three fellow professors hold evaluations of new professors and those renewing their tenure positions. After this, the professor would have a unique plan for gaining tenure. For example, a newly hired professor might have to create courses or seminars that are not in the professor’s specific skill set, but closely related to it.
When it came to the environment, many different forms of settings, both indoors and out, were discussed. “I have the outdoors here,” said Dr. Jennifer Bruce, associate professor of mathematics at MC .
“It may sound silly to say, but when you work here most of the time, it makes a big difference,” Bruce said. “Also, I love Mountain Challenge. It is great that we go on expeditions and explore the outdoors.”
The nature outside was not the only type of environment that the professors discussed; they also talked about their interactions with each other.
“I know all of the professors around campus by first name,” Bruce said. “My husband, who works at UT, may know most of the professors, but certainly not all of them.” An important aspect of the overall atmosphere that professors work in is the interaction with their students. “Professors are very much involved in the life around here,” Bruce said. “Professors go to sporting events, to the concerts in the Clayton Center, and more. Professors are very integrated into the community on campus.”