The Struggle for Faculty Power at the University of Dubuque
In this chapter, the author relates his experiences with faculty unionization at the University of Dubuque (UD), a private liberal arts college and seminary in Dubuque, Iowa. As a member of the National Education Association (NEA), the author helped organize their local; negotiated their first contract; held several local, state, and national leadership positions; filed grievances; went out on strike with his coworkers; and generally fought management initiatives to contain and control faculty unrest. This chapter provides a firsthand account by a labor historian of how UD administrators seized on the opportunity created by the 1980 Supreme Court decision, NLRB v. Yeshiva University, to decertify the faculty union. It also highlights the achievement and subsequent loss of collective bargaining among faculty in higher education, along with the challenges and opportunities to academics as union activists in the long battle against the corporatism of the university.
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