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FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions

What is ASPRO?

ASPRO - the Academic Staff Professionals Representation Organization - is a not-for-profit, professional organization representing the interests of the UW System Academic Staff to the State Legislature, the Governor, the Board of Regents, and the public.

ASPRO is the official lobbying and public relations arm of the academic staff.

What does ASPRO do?

  • Advocates for the academic staff

  • Educates decision-leaders about academic staff roles

  • Collaborates with UW administration, faculty, student groups, alumni associations, professional groups and other organizations when goals are shared.

Is ASPRO an employee union?

No, ASPRO is not a Union, nor does it negotiate or bargain employment rights.

What has ASPRO accomplished?

ASPRO has achieved governance, compensation, and fringe benefit improvements for all academic staff. See ASPRO’s list of successes and accomplishments.

Why should I join?

Because ASPRO has protected your pay, benefits and job security. Because you and your Academic Staff colleagues don’t have to do it alone.

Perhaps you are an Academic Staff member who is concerned about how you are treated on campus or within the University System. You want to be a professional committed to the students and work that you do, but want a sense of security about your employment. You are extremely busy, don’t have the time or may be uncomfortable with speaking out publicly –YOU SHUOLD JOIN ASPRO.

Perhaps you are an Academic Staff leader on your campus. You serve on your campus’s Academic Staff Assembly or Senate. You are comfortable talking with administrators. You are willing to contact legislators or testify before a legislative committee. You have a desire to be involved – YOU SHOULD JOIN ASPRO.

You will benefit.

  • Access to “insider” information affecting your job and your life.

  • A place to quietly raise concerns that can be investigated and addressed without calling attention to yourself.

  • Your role at the University will be championed to Legislators, System Administration, and the Regents.

  • Advocates will be working to protect your job, your salary, and your employment benefits.

Your membership strengthens ASPRO

  • Larger membership increases ASPRO’s clout with Legislators and System Administration.

  • Legislators of all parts of the State will be supportive of the academic staff as they hear from their constituents who work at UW campuses.

  • Every member adds to the financial power of ASPRO to retain the best staff to advocate on your behalf.

How much does it cost to join ASPRO?

Membership is extremely inexpensive and there are two payment options for full membership privileges. Dues of $135 can be paid annually via check OR you can opt for the dues to be taken directly from your monthly paycheck at a rate of just 0.25 of 1%. (For most ASPRO members, this means $6.00 to $11.00 per month.)

In recognition of the power of their participation and appreciation of their dedication, retired members may join for only $25 for a lifetime membership!

Are the ASPRO Board of Directors and President paid?

No! The ASPRO Board of Directors and President operate on a strictly volunteer basis. All board members are working academic staff who donate both their time and energies and receive no compensation in return.

Why are membership dues so low?

ASPRO is here to serve you, the academic staff of the University of Wisconsin. We make every attempt to keep overhead costs low so that ASPRO membership does not impose a financial burden on members. ASPRO dues cover the costs of a part-time lobbyist and association manager. There are no full-time employees of ASPRO.

How is ASPRO able to influence the Wisconsin State Legislature?

ASPRO is a highly organized association which is able to clearly and effectively communicate academic staff needs to legislators and other policy makers. ASPRO employs an outside firm to manage our organization and a part-time contract lobbyist to convey our interests to the Legislature. In addition, ASPRO involves academic staff in meetings and other contacts with legislators.

Who are the academic staff?

These positions include those that:

  • Are unique to higher education;

  • Provide direct support for academic programming, instruction, or research;

  • Develop and implement policies in the UW System.

Positions include lecturers, academic advisers, researchers, librarians, academic computing and information technology staff, scientists, and student services staff. University of Wisconsin System academic staff are respected professionals who contribute daily to the quality and reputation of a university system recognized and respected across the United States and around the world.

Also see the Academic Staff Fact Sheet.

How many academic staff are there?

There are over 12,500 individual employees of the UW System who are academic staff, representing over 10,000 full-time equivalent positions. (There are approximately 6,200 tenure-track Faculty in the UW System, and approximately 10,000 Classified Staff.)

Which UW Campuses have academic staff?

All University of Wisconsin campuses have academic staff. This includes all 13 four-year campuses, all 13 two-year colleges, UW System Administration, and statewide UW-Extension, which had offices in all 72 counties. While the majority of UW employees – including academic staff – are at the UW-Madison and UW-Milwaukee campuses, all University of Wisconsin campuses rely on academic staff to conduct operations every day in instruction, research, and student services.

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