Every academic department at Columbia is entitled to one representative per ten faculty (or a minimum of one for smaller departments). Departments may hold elections each fall for reps, but since most departments are underrepresented, the process of becoming a rep is usually more informal: contacting the current department reps and/or the P-fac office to express interest. Department reps and the Steering Committee communicate about issues that arise within departments as well as those of concern to the part-time faculty as a whole. Department reps assist colleagues with intradepartmental issues. They also meet each semester with their department chair, a right guaranteed by the contract, to discuss part-time faculty concerns. Departments are also required to hold at least one joint meeting of full-and part-time faculty each year, to post fulltime faculty openings where part-timers can find out about them, and to provide a teaching availability form in advance of each semester’s scheduling. Department reps are in the best position to make sure their departments follow these and other contract requirements.