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Worker Education



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Labor Resource

New Labor Forum

Urban Agenda

Labor Breakfast Forums

National and International Conferences

Leadership Development Programs

Labor & Civic Participation

Union Semester


New Labor Forum

Union Semester

Future of Labor Conference

Graduation Picture 2006

Assessing the NYC Transit Strike of 2005

Labor Resource Center

The Queens College Labor Resource Center is dedicated to revitalizing a strong and democratic labor movement and supporting labor’s efforts to create a more just and equitable society. The Center brings together union activists, academics, and community leaders to focus on those issues and policies that impact on workers and their communities. It is also dedicated to enabling rank-and-file workers to play more active and informed roles in their unions, workplaces, and communities. To fulfill its mission, the Center conducts research, offers leadership development programs, holds monthly forums, organizes national conferences, publishes educational material, develops public education programs, and provides a number of venues for dialogue and debate on the future of the labor movement.

New Labor Forum:

a journal of ideas, analysis, and debate

The journal examines labor’s past, assesses its contemporary challenges, and provides a forum for those with strategic proposals for increasing labor’s strength in a changing and increasingly global economy and culture. New Labor Forum encourages debate and presents a range of viewpoints on issues. The journal’s roster of contributors includes national and internationally recognized scholars, labor leaders, and public intellectuals as well as policy advocates and union dissidents. (more)

Urban Agenda:

an action research project focusing on labor, community
and public policy

A collaboration of the Labor Resource Center and the New York City Central Labor Council, Urban Agenda focuses on public policies and the impact these have on workers, the poor, and working class communities. Urban Agenda conducts policy research, surveys communities, convenes labor and community coalitions, provides testimony to local and regional legislative bodies, and advocates for public policies that promote a more socially, economically, and environmentally sound New York City. Among the issues addressed by Urban Agenda are: housing, transportation, education, the environment, health care, and economic development.

Labor Breakfast Forums:

an arena for discussion and opposing views

The Labor Resource Center organizes monthly forums to provide opportunities for candid discussion among labor leaders, activists, scholars, and policy makers. Forums showcase speakers who represent a wide range of scholarship and expertise in the fields of civil rights, government, the national and international labor movement, and the arts. Speakers have included Nobel laureates, foreign ministers, national and local officials, leaders of international labor organizations, distinguished scholars, civil rights leaders, political analysts, and advocates for immigrant rights, the poor, and the homeless. Over the past 10 years, well over 100 speakers have addressed the Center’s forums.

Among the international speakers

Tony Benn, Labour MP and Cabinet Minister, UK; Augosto Boal, Playwright, Workers’ Party, Brazil; Louis Viannet, President, Confederation Generale du Travail, France; Mike Mabuyakhula, African National Congress, South Africa; Amira Hass, journalist, Israel; Hikari Nohara, economist, Japan; T.A. Francis, National Secretary, All India Trade Union Congress, India; Peter Waterman, Senior Researcher, Institute of Social Science, Denmark; Boris Kargalitsky, journalist, Russia

Among the domestic speakers

David Montgomery, labor historian, Professor Emeritus, Yale University; Angelo Falcon, President, Institute for Puerto Rican Policy, CUNY; Ruth Messinger, former Borough President and current President, American Jewish World Services; Manning Marable, author and Professor of History, Columbia University; Kimberly Crenshaw, author and Professor of Law, Columbia University; Bill Fletcher, former Assistant to the President, AFL-CIO and President, TransAfrica Forum; Brian McLaughlin, President, NYC Central Labor Council and member, New York State Assembly; David Moberg, journalist; Paul Buhle, author and senior lecturer, Brown University; Walter Bernstein, screenwriter and activist; Francis Fox Piven, author and Distinguished Professor, Graduate Center, CUNY; Maurice Isserman, author and Professor, Hamilton University; Bill Tabb, author and Professor of Economics, Queens College; Nelson Lichtenstein, author and Professor of History, University of California, Santa Barbara; Gifford
Miller, Speaker, New York City Council; William Thompson, Controller, City of New York; Michael Dukakis, Governor of Massachusetts; Nydia Velazquez, member of Congress; Jeff Faux, President, Economic Policy Institute; Bogdan Denitch, author and Professor of Sociology, CUNY Graduate School;

and many more...

National and International Conferences

The Center’s conferences have attracted hundreds of participants from across the country and around the world. Topics have included class equity issues in higher education and the future of the labor movement.

Leadership Development

Labor and Civic Participation (LCP)

preparing unionists for leadership in electoral politics

A collaboration with the NYC Central Labor Council, LCP is a non-partisan initiative to increase the level of informed and responsible citizen participation in local and national politics. Through a series of college credit courses and fieldwork assignments, LCP prepares union staff and activists to participate fully and effectively in the electoral process and make constructive contributions to local, regional, and national civic life. Faculty in this program include elected officials and other high-level political activists and analysts. LCP graduates have served as key campaign staff in local elections and several have run for public office themselves.

Labor at the Crossroads

preparing union activists for union leadership

This program is designed for shop stewards and union staff with leadership potential. Participants sharpen their communication skills and learn about labor and labor relations as they earn credits toward a college degree. Courses include writing, public speaking, labor history, economics, labor relations, and labor law.

New York Union Semester

a unique study and internship program for visiting college students

A collaboration with the NYC Central Labor Council, the Union Semester program brings college students, usually between the ages of 18 and 25, from around the country to work as paid interns with NYC unions or community organizations while studying labor history and contemporary labor issues at Queens College. Participating unions and community organizations provide tuition scholarships and weekly stipends. Union Semester provides a rich working experience for interns and facilitates a dialogue between young and veteran activists. Union Semester has changed the lives of many students who have gone on to work full-time for unions or related social justice organizations. (more)

BASS (Bachelor of Applied Social Science)

a degree program preparing students for advocacy work in the non-profit world

BASS is an interdisciplinary degree program specially designed to prepare students for advocacy work in the public and non-profit sectors. Students select a concentration in one of three areas: 1) labor, 2) politics, government, and public policy, or 3) community and human services. Field Work is an important component of the BASS program, and students can select from a wide range of internships with government agencies, unions, community organizations, advocacy groups, and other non-profit organizations Customized Education Programs The Center works with individual unions to develop workshops, seminars, and conferences tailored to meet the educational needs of their rank-and-file activists. These leadership programs have taken a wide variety of forms, including miniconferences for the union’s key political activists; retreats for the union’s staff and stewards; and workshops for over 1,000 shop stewards on revitalizing the union.

Customized Education Programs

The Center works with individual unions to develop workshops, seminars, and conferences tailored to meet the educational needs of their rank-and-file activists. These leadership programs have taken a wide variety of forms, including miniconferences for the union’s key political activists; retreats for the union’s staff and stewards; and workshops for over 1,000 shop stewards on revitalizing the union.































Worker Education
Extension Center
25 West 43rd Street
New York, N.Y. 10036
212 827 0200
212 827 5955
Labor Resource Center
Flushing Campus
65-30 Kissena Blvd.
Flushing, N.Y. 11367
718 997 3060
718 997 3069