Earning a bachelor’s degree often fuels a desire for more knowledge and academic achievement. Many NLC graduates have gone on to continue their academic work at graduate schools in a range of disciplines and at law schools.

NLC has worked with several universities to help those institutions set up labor-oriented programs designed to make them useful and accessible to NLC graduates and other union members. Over the years, various schools have offered programs — at NLC, on their own campuses, and online — in studies such as organization development, union leadership, public administration, and legal and ethical studies.

While these programs are not NLC programs, as NLC is not a graduate institution, we support these programs and encourage you to explore these opportunities.

Empire State College Masters in Work and Labor Policy and advanced Graduate Certificate in Work and Public Policy

Both programs appeal to people who are union members, as well as to those who have a general interest in work and labor issues.  The MA program is predominately offered online, while the certificate program is offered entirely online.  It is also feasible to build the certificate into the MA program, thus completing two qualifications simultaneously.

For additional information on either program  click here or contact Dr. Jason Russell at [email protected]

Penn State University Professional Studies Degree In Human Resources and Employment Relations (Labor Studies Concentration)

Bachelors Degrees

Masters Degree

To be effective in today’s fast-moving world, labor leaders need to have in-depth knowledgeable about a range of issues. And they need to possess the same analytical and leadership skills that employer representatives have.   Penn State’s MPS degree allows union leaders and staff to gain that knowledge and develop those skills. The Labor Studies Concentration within the MPS in Human Resources and Employment Relations (HRER) is a labor-relevant degree program that provides union leaders with the flexibility to fit coursework into their busy schedules.   The program is:

  • fully online so that students are not required to physically come to the University or any other location for classes
  • provides maximum flexibility by not requiring students to be online at any particular point in time
  • rigorous and requires the completion of weekly readings, assignments, and activities, but students can work on these whenever they have time during the week
  • designed for people working full-time who are interested in taking classes part time.

Who should apply for the Masters Degree, Labor Studies Concentration?

Anyone interested in learning about the critical challenges facing unions in the U.S. and around the world and in developing advanced analytical and leadership skills.   The program is particularly relevant for elected union leaders and professional union staff.   Classes are offered year round and are fully online to meet the needs of busy people.   Applicants must have a bachelors degree from an accredited university and are admitted to the program on the basis of undergraduate grades, work experience, and a personal statement.   Applicants can begin coursework in the Fall, Spring, or Summer semesters and must apply 2-3 months before the beginning of a semester.

For additional information on the Masters of Professional Studies click here or contact Amy Dietz, HRER Academic Advisor at Penn State World Campus at [email protected].

George Mason University Masters of Science in Organization Development and Knowledge Management

The Organization Development and Knowledge Management (ODKM) masters program is designed to enhance participants’ abilities to be effective agents of change within their unions, communities and organizations. The focus of the program is to understand what is happening in organizations, to address issues and challenges relevant to labor representatives, and to practice new leadership skills. Graduates are prepared to find creative solutions to complex problems common to many organizations. This is a cohort program, so students begin and end together and work together throughout. Work between residencies is supported by online collaborative tools.

  • 18 month program
  • Six residencies held at George Mason University’s Arlington campus
  • In-state tuition at $678.75 per credit hour
  • Total tuition for the program is $24,435
  • 36 total credit hours*
  • Federal financial aid and scholarships available

*Visit the GMU ODKM site or contact [email protected] for more information.

University of Massachusetts Master’s Degree in Union Leadership and Administration

The University of Massachusetts offers a Master’s Degree in Union Leadership and Administration (ULA) at its Labor Relations and Research Center in Amherst, Massachusetts. This part-time, low residency program is designed for union officers, staff and activists. The ULA program provides the technical skills necessary for today’s union leaders to confront the challenges facing the modern labor movement.

For more information, call or write:

Union Leadership and Administration Program University of Massachusetts Labor
Center/Gordon Hall
418 N. Pleasant Street, Suite B
Amherst, MA 01002-1735
Phone: 413-545-4875
Fax: 413-545-0110
Website: http://www.umass.edu/lrrc