Learn. Share. Grow.


Courses will run Monday nights until November 6th, and Graduation will be held on November 13th. There will be no class on October 9th in honor of the federal holiday.


Please note that courses are subject to change, and some may be added in the coming months. Registration now available! Questions? Contact us at or (781) 340-7887.   Please also note that we are experimenting with a new time for the coming term! School will run from 6:30-9:00 pm.


FIRST PERIOD – 6:30 – 7:40 pm



Lisa Field, Associate Director, Legislative Division, Massachusetts Nurses Association Joe Markman, Associate Director, Division of Public Communication, MNA This class will focus on media in the context of the labor movement, with an emphasis on how to use media to shift the public perception of unions. Topics covered will include: how to message campaigns, stick to talking points, and speak with reporters and other media representatives. The course will include simulations of talking to reporters and allow students to workshop ideas and practice in small groups.


ABC’s OF ARBITRATION (This course has reached capacity)

James Cooper, Labor Arbitrator
John Hanson, Arbitrator and Mediator
Theresa Dowdy, Arbitrator, Mediator, and Educator
Robert Manning, Attorney
This course will cover the basics of arbitration: the Supreme Court’s view of arbitration; the arbitration process; the theory of the case based on the issue and evidence; the concepts of just cause, past practice, and more. There will be guest arbitrators in the class every week. Class limited to 15.



Elissa Cadillic, President, AFSCME Local 1526 (Boston Public Library)

The Steward’s job is exciting and sometimes headache inducing but above all one of the most important roles within the Union. Your job is to lead, organize and negotiate with management. You must understand your contractual language, have good problem-solving skills, and recognize that sometimes compromise is the right way to move forward. There are always new things to learn so you can best represent your members while building solidarity in your union.


POWER AND STRUGGLE: The Forces that Shaped the Labor Movement

David Kowalski, Retired President, UWUA Local 318

This class is a staple for every union member. It is the story of unions and corporations: how they formed and how they have grown. This class will give an overview of how labor struggled for fair wages and social justice from a variety of different lenses (economic, political, judicial, and legislative). This class gives a unique perspective of how unions have been molded into what we are today.

SECOND PERIOD – 7:50 – 9:00 pm



Paul Kelly, Attorney, Segal Roitman LLP
Lou Mandarini, Executive Director, Mass. Laborers Benefit Funds

Students in this class will be exposed to the practical, day-to-day issues that arise in administering employee benefits for union members and their families. They will also be exposed to the history of health plans, pension plans and other employee benefits in the United States and in Massachusetts. The class will review the principal federal laws (ERISA and the Taft Hartley Act) that regulate private benefit plans as well as state laws that provide pensions and healthcare to public employees in Massachusetts. Everything you wanted to know about employee benefits but were afraid to ask!



Daniel Butterfield, MSEM, PE, UWUA Local 369, Chief Steward, Eversource

This intensive course is a proactive and unconventional look at leadership: you’ll be building self-knowledge and self-empowerment as you prepare to lead others. At the start of the term, you’ll fill out a survey that assesses your personality type and use this to think about yours and others’ leadership styles. Topics will include Principles of Leadership; Know Thy Self: Understanding Personality Types; Communication: Don’t Just Talk– Why Problem Solving Needs Active Listening; Facilitating Change; Building Secondary Leadership and Good Teams; and Leadership: Pulling it all together.


NEXT STEPS FOR STEWARDS: Organizing in the Workplace

Tom Breslin, Retired Assistant Director of Labor Education, MNA

Following a similar structure to last term’s “Next Steps for Stewards: Organizing Around the Grievance Process,” this course will be an in-depth look at the role of the steward. Concepts covered will include: internal organizing techniques, power mapping, and campaign development basics. This course may be taken concurrently with “The Steward’s Job.”


PERSUASIVE PUBLIC SPEAKING: Building Effective Presentation and Persuasion Skills

Richard Reilly, Arbitrator
Allyson Every, Executive Director, The Labor Guild

Political candidates hone and practice stump speeches to paint a vivid picture that wins support. Union leaders or community activists must also persuade and communicate effectively with members, managers, and groups in all kinds of situations. Whether discussing changes in labor law and relevant Supreme Court cases, or explaining union positions or benefits, practice and polish your speaking skills in a friendly, supportive environment with guidance and feedback from the instructor.






Paul F. McCarthy, Union Educational Consultant, Collective Bargaining Associates

Take the mystery out of the bargaining process and learn the inside game of collective bargaining negotiations. This hands-on, nuts and bolts course involves the participants in all aspects of negotiating a collective bargaining agreement. It includes lecture, educational materials, simulated bargaining sessions, strategy development, and bargaining caucus experience. This intensive course design uses both 1st and 2nd period, 6:30 PM – 9:00 PM, for the full term.



Online registration available here. If you have any questions, contact the Labor Guild office at or (781) 340-7887.


To download the flyer of this term’s course offerings, click here.

To apply online for a scholarship or download the scholarship application, click here.

To see previous terms’ course offerings, click here.



Our instructors are outstanding practitioners drawn from the ranks of labor lawyers, union officers, management executives, benefit experts, consultants, arbitrators, federal and state agency staff, academics, economists, and social media specialists from Eastern Massachusetts and beyond.

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