Union Skills Courses (USC)

The National Labor College is now in its fourth decade of providing the highest quality education and training programs available for union members. This success is attributable to our excellent faculty, fully-unionized facilities, and the enthusiastic participation of union activists. Each year, thousands of members from virtually every union affiliated with the AFL-CIO attend one or more of our courses.

Academic Credit

Most week-long Union Skills Courses have been assessed for two credits.  Students interested in receiving a third credit may do so by arranging additional assignments with the faculty member and notifying the Registrar’s Office. Specialized certificates are available to students completing a series of related courses.


The NLC is an open enrollment institution. Members of AFL-CIO affiliated unions, state federations, central labor councils, and AFL-CIO staff are entitled to take advantage of the AFL-CIO-subsidized tuition rate.

Members of non AFL-CIO affiliated union can also take courses here at the National Labor College at a special union member rate. This rate is slightly higher than that paid by AFL-CIO affiliates.

Participation in a Union Skills Course provides union leaders with the opportunity to:

    • get examples of practical, tested leadership methods
    • have access to up-to-date materials on current policies and programs, and new developments and emerging problems in union operations
    • receive renewed assurance, enthusiasm and pride in the programs
    • discuss purposes and goals of the American labor movement

Sessions at the National Labor College provide lively discussions and skill-building from the faculty. You will also be exchanging ideas and experiences with other program participants. Information sharing technology and distance learning strategies also provide opportunities for making labor leadership education accessible to a wider and deeper labor activist audience.


You may complete an application online on NLC IQ.Web.

You may mail or fax a printed version of the NLC Application form.

You will need the Adobe Reader to view the printed form in PDF format. The free Adobe Reader is available for download at the Adobe web site.

USC Program Courses

For USC course descriptions and the annual course calendar, click the links to USC Courses and USC Calendar. For the most current information about course offerings and schedules, including cancellations, check NLC IQ.Web.

You may also view information about Union Skills Courses in National Labor College catalogs.