United Association for Labor Education - 2019 Conference

In partnership with the Labor School at Penn state

Conference Art

Philadelphia, PA
April 2-5,  2019

Download Conference brochure here: pdf UALE 2019 brochure (684 KB)

Call for Proposals Community Organization Grants Research Grants
New Generation Award Conference Format Labor History Tour
Registration info Accomodations Downloads

Watch this page--more information will be posted as it becomes available

Call for Proposals

UALE seeks proposals from labor union, university, and community practitioners for conference sessions on our 2019 theme:


Our perilous and rapidly evolving contemporary period illustrates both the various challenges workers experience on the job and in society, and the resiliency and militancy with which workers have mobilized. Facing capital flight, contingent labor systems, automation, structural inequality and racism, and strident political opposition, workers have cultivated new movements and avenues for mobilizing to challenge—and often to emerge victorious against—these powerful forces. For example, movements and strikes in areas such as education, health care, telecommunications, hospitality, technology, fast-food, transportation, the growing fields of contingent employment, and the incarcerated in recent years have frequently crossed boundaries of race, gender, nationality, class, and other identities to grow bases of support and achieve important gains.

Please join us April 2-5, 2019, in Philadelphia for the United Association for Labor Education’s conference where labor and community educators, scholars and activists will share teaching innovations, analyses, applied research and experiences in the field. We aim to highlight and understand new approaches to labor organizing that respond to current challenges, as well as the role of labor education in building power. Finally we are interested in practices and ideas that support leadership development of young workers to expand and strengthen our movement.

To submit a proposal, please email it to Jason Kozlowski at . You will receive an email confirmation when your submission in received.

Although UALE membership is not required to submit a proposal, it is strongly encouraged.

Deadline for proposal from individuals and panels:  December 21, 2018

Deadline for proposals from UALE working groups: January 11, 2019


Conference proposals will be selected based upon:

1)    Relevance of proposals to the conference theme;

2)    Having a balance of academic, union, and community presenters;

3)    Demographic inclusivity (race, gender, region, age, etc.);

4)    A balance between the number of proposals and the depth of presentations;

5)    Proposals that spark and hold people’s interest.


Proposal Requirements:

1)    Presentation Format (i.e., paper, panel, poster, roundtable, teaching demonstration)

2)    Presentation Title

3)    Individual or Panel Designation

4)    Contact Information for Each Presenter/Participant

  1. Name
  2. Organization/Affiliation
  3. Mailing address
  4. E-mail address
  5. Phone number

5)    Proposal describing topic, presenter expertise, and presentation form (300-500 words)

6)    Abstract or synopsis (100 words). This will be published in the conference program.

7)    Please indicate if you would like your proposal submitted to one or more of the Working Groups

Timely submissions are essential. Late proposals cannot be considered.

 back to top


Community Organization Grants

Grants Available for Community Organizations: UALE offers a limited number of grants for community groups involved in labor education to attend the annual conference. Contact Susan Williams at .

Deadline for community grant applications: January 11, 2019.

Grant recipients are encouraged to submit proposals for a conference session.

For an application, see downloads at the bottom of this page


Research Grants

UALE is pleased to continue awarding grants to fund research related to workers, unions, and employment policy. Preference will be given to UALE members in determining award recipients. UALE has allocated up to $5,000 for this purpose. We will select a maximum of two award recipients. The total number of awards for 2019 will be determined by the UALE executive board.

Applications for the 2019 grants are due by January 11, 2019. The recipients will be announced by February 15, 2019. UALE requests that successful applicants present the results of their research at a UALE conference within a few years following receipt of a UALE research grant.

Grant recipients are also requested to acknowledge UALE in any product which the grant assists in bringing to fruition.

For an Grant application, see downloads at the bottom of this page.


New Generation Award

Submissions Are Requested!

By giving the New Generation Award at each annual conference, the UALE seeks to encourage emerging labor scholars, teachers, students, researchers, and multi-media producers. Labor Education and Labor Studies need a new cadre of 21st century innovators and leaders! This award is one way in which UALE seeks to support this development from within higher education, community-based organizations, and unions.

NOTE TO VETERAN LABOR EDUCATORS AND SCHOLARS: Please help us identify and encourage newer colleagues to make submissions for the NEW GENERATION AWARD. Actively reach out to anyone you think is a good candidate for this award including students, activists, interns, researchers and unionists. Authors do not have to be UALE members. Their work does not have to be created specifically for this competition.

Deadline: January 11, 2019

See flyer under downloads at the bottom of this page for information on eligibility, selection process, and how to apply.

back to top

Conference Format

The UALE Conference generally offers two types of sessions: plenary and concurrent.

Concurrent Sessions run for up to two hours, several of which take place during the same time slot. Sessions vary in structure to provide a rich and diverse conference experience for presenters and participants; they offer some combination of the formats listed below.

  • Panel Sessions include multiple presenters who share their work on a similar topic. Each panelist will have equal time to present his or her work, followed by Q&A and discussion. By offering presentations on different aspects of a single topic, panel sessions engender engaging discussion among presenters and the audience. Session chairs will be appointed in advance and will be responsible for planning with panelists prior to the session.
  • Paper Sessions can include research papers, case studies, or other kinds of reports related to labor education. These sessions offer presentations from authors who have written about a generally related topic. Each author will have equal time to present their work, after which the session chair will lead discussion.  Authors should submit an abstract for consideration; full-length manuscripts should be submitted prior to the conference. Session chairs will be appointed in advance and will be responsible for planning with authors prior to the session.
  • Roundtable Discussions provide an opportunity for participatory discussion of labor education issues or programs, research in progress, or other relevant topics in an informal setting around a table or in a circle of chairs. The convener poses a series of questions to participants and leads a conversation. Roundtable Discussions draw heavily on the experience of those in the room.
  • Teaching Demonstrations engage participants in an interactive manner that facilitates group participation in some form, and utilizes labor education techniques, particularly popular education. Activities are typically followed by discussion of the technique(s) demonstrated and the uses to which they might be put. Facilitators are encouraged to offer their design and materials to participants to adapt and use.
  • Poster Sessions provide an opportunity to present and discuss a single theme or relevant topic in an informal setting, somewhat like an exhibit hall or information fair. A good poster presents useful information with engaging graphics to stimulate discussion. Poster presenters should prepare a display using easily understood printed text and graphics on a board no larger than 30” x 40.” Presenters should prepare welcoming remarks for conference attendees and explain their posters. Attendees and presenters will then discuss the posters and the topics they address. It is helpful to provide handouts for participants with presenters’ contact information to facilitate future dialogue. In order to have a poster accepted for display at the conference, please submit a photograph of the poster with a brief accompanying explanation of its content and purpose.

Plenary Sessions are two hours long and designed to bring all conference attendees together around important areas of labor education. Plenary sessions are determined by UALE’s Executive Board, but UALE members are welcome to submit suggestions and volunteer to help develop plenary sessions.  

UALE encourages submissions that relate directly to the conference theme. However, we will accept submissions focused on other areas.  

Some sessions are organized by Working Groups around their specific areas of interest. Working Groups typically solicit group-member input to develop proposals, and new members are always welcome. Working Group information is available at www.uale.org, and current Working Groups include:

  • Central Labor Council (CLC)
  • Immigration/Globalization
  • K-14 Labor Education
  • On-Line Education
  • Popular Education
  • Worker Writers
  • Labor Film Documentarians
  • Young Workers

 back to top

Labor History Tour

As usual, UALE will offer a Labor History Tour of the city before the conference. Details, including price, are being worked out. They will be posted here when available, along with registration information for the tour.

Please note: registration for the Labor Tour will be separate from registration from the Conference this year.

Registration Information

How to register:

  • You can register online using the link at the top right side of this page (under "Conference Quicklinks")

Registration covers conference programming, a welcome reception, three breakfasts, and an awards banquet.

Online registration closes March 15, 2019. Thereafter, registration will be available at the conference.


(by February 28)

(after February 28)
Member 350 425
Non-member 450 525
Community Group Attendee  110 160
Low income, student
or unemployed
75 150
One-day attendance 175 225
Vendor table**
(Vendor must register as a conference participant for this rate.)
100 150

* Early registration offers the opportunity to renew your UALE membership at a discount

** In addition to registration, vendors and exhibitors must complete a supplemental Conference Vendor Registration Form and pay the per-table fee above. A Vendor Registration form will be available soon.

Financial assistance for Community-based organizations: UALE has established a grant to help one or more community-based organizations defray the costs of attending the conference. See "Grants Available for Community Organizations" above. 

back to top


Wyndham Philadelphia Historic District

Call 215-923-8660 to reserve your room

Reference: UALE 2019

Reservations deadline is 3/12/19

Rate is $139/night


Conference Downloads

document Call for Proposals (39 KB)

pdf Conference Brochure (684 KB)

document Research Grant Application (23 KB)

document New Generation Award flyer (26 KB)

document Community Grant Application (37 KB)

document Solicitud de Subvención Comunitaria (39 KB)

Buy labor books from Union Communication Services and Save


UALE has an longstanding relationship with Union Communication Services. Their book catalogue includes over 100
titles, many of them hard to find. 

UALE members are entitled to a 10% discount on books purchased here. To get the discount, click here before visiting the UCS catalogue.