What ULA Students Are Saying

“Scholarship and activism, the ULA is the only graduate course for working trade union activists who seek essential and critical scholarly support for their ongoing work. The ULA program of study is substantively invaluable to any labor activist, yet accessible to working class scholars. In addition, the interaction with peers and faculty makes possible an exciting exchange of activist strategies and ideas.”

  • Yvonne Martinez, Council Staff, AFSCME

“Meeting diverse people from varied backgrounds and unions, the Masters’ Degree program at UMass not only broadened my knowledge and aided my expertise, but also renewed my spirit and dedication to a broad vision for a renewed and active labor movement.”

  • Mike Matejka, Great Plains Laborers’ District Council

“The ULA program brings together an amazing group of union leaders — stewards, local union officers, district and International staff — from across the country; together with an outstanding group of labor researchers and educators who are themselves engaged in cutting-edge research and activities dedicated to building a vibrant labor movement. The ULA program far exceeded every expectation I had, and I know it will continue to prove invaluable for my work now and in the future.”

  • Nancy Lessin, President, USWA 9267

“The Labor Center experience connected me to the labor movement in ways that I hadn't been connected before. I learned much, made some good friends, and was able to complete my degree while working full time. Not bad!”

  • Bob Ray, Illinois Education Association/NEA

“The ULA Master’s Program is a great opportunity to learn and to sharpen the skills we need to represent our members in the new economy. We owe it to our labor movement to develop skilled, well-educated leaders.”

  • Mike Cavanaugh, Deputy Director, Field Department, AFL-CIO

“Attending the ULA Program has been one of the most rewarding experiences in my life.  The material covered far exceeds my expectations.  The ten-day sessions are rigorous, but are worth every minute of effort.”

  • Robert V. Massey, Jr., United Mine Workers of America

“The ULA program is both provocative and energizing. The ULA program at UMass helped me to examine myself and the labor movement in ways I had never imagined. Some of the labor movement’s best and brightest attend the ULA program. I believe the networks and relationships built during my time in the ULA program will provide opportunities for our members in the future.”

  • C. Ray Davenport, Commissioner, Virginia Department of Labor and Industry

“The ULA program at the University of Massachusetts is the only graduate study program whose focus is based on educating union members from a working-class perspective. Emphasis is structured around critical evaluation and analysis of issues and information that are essential for labor union members to discuss and debate in gaining an overall perspective, past, present, and future, of the labor movement.”

  • Herman Gilman, Organizer, AFSCME Council 28