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Career Instructor - Archive
Labor Education and Research Center

Posting: 14459
Location: Eugene
Closes: 2015-02-13

Location: Eugene (with possibility of future move to Portland)

Closes:  February 13, 2015

The Labor Education and Research Center (LERC) at the University of Oregon invites applications for a dynamic, committed labor educator to join our faculty as a Career Instructor. 

About LERC:  Since its creation in 1977, LERC has provided teaching, research, and technical assistance services to working adults and labor organizations in Oregon and throughout the Pacific Northwest.  Throughout its history LERC has served as a catalyst for critical analysis, strategic thinking, and concerted action aimed at strengthening labor organizations and improving the lives of working Oregonians.

LERC has a six-member faculty with strong roots in the union movement and expertise in a variety of academic disciplines.  In addition to teaching working adults, LERC faculty members conduct research on relevant work, employment, and public policy issues.  They also work extensively with policy makers, university faculty, labor relations professionals, and community leaders on issues of concern to Oregon workers. 

A thirty-member advisory board provides LERC with support, guidance, and strategic advice.  The program enjoys an excellent reputation at both the state and national levels as a valued resource that works diligently to meet the multiple needs of its constituents.  For more information about LERC, please visit our website: http://lerc.uoregon.edu/.

Located 110 miles south of Portland, the University of Oregon is an AAU research institution that has an enrollment of 20,000.  The Eugene metro area (pop. 215,000) is in a region noted for its dynamic quality of life and progressive cultural environment. We are about an hour's drive from the Pacific Coast and the Cascade Mountains.

Job Description:  The successful candidate will have a demonstrated ability to design and teach non-credit classes for working adults, union members, and community partners.  In order to prepare workers for the demands of a rapidly changing social environment, LERC instructors provide a diverse set of educational offerings.  These classes include subjects related to effective  union representation (collective bargaining; labor law; grievance handling and arbitration) the social, economic and political context in which labor operates (labor history; politics; the domestic and global economy; community outreach and coalition building); skills needed for effective union leadership (strategic planning; organizational development; interpersonal communications; internal organizing); and strategies for recruiting new members.  Although LERC’s teaching is primarily aimed at rank-and-file unionists and member-leaders, its educational offerings have also focused on advanced leadership training and promoting organizational change in recent years.  The Career Instructor also will be responsible for coordinating occasional full-day and multi-day conferences on these topics with assistance from other LERC faculty and staff.

The Career Instructor will also be expected to pursue applied research projects and/or policy analysis on work and employment issues.  LERC has a long history of conducting research projects requested by its constituents and offering analysis on specific issues related to work, employment, and economic affairs.  We encourage applications from candidates with an interest in helping LERC expand its capacity in these areas.  Over time, we expect that projects developed by LERC faculty should be capable of attracting external funding or support.

Depending on the candidate’s background and qualifications, the position might also include occasional teaching of credit classes to undergraduate or graduate students at the University of Oregon

The Career Instructor’s job will entail frequent in-state travel along with periodic night and weekend work.



  • Master's degree required in social sciences, education, or other relevant field.  In exceptional circumstances a bachelor's degree with extensive experience will be considered

  • Demonstrated interest in, and commitment to, issues affecting workers and unions

  • Relevant teaching experience in adult education (e.g., classroom teaching, training, workshop facilitation)

  • Strong oral, written, and interpersonal communications skills

  • Demonstrated ability to work effectively with a diverse range of constituents on work and employment issues and an interest in supporting and enhancing an inclusive learning and working environment


  • Two or more years of experience working with labor unions or other worker organizations

  • Experience with curriculum development, teaching labor education, or conducting popular or adult education classes

  • Track record of, or demonstrated  potential for, producing applied research or policy analysis funded by external sources

  • Experience in working with racially and ethnically diverse communities

Employment Beginning:  Between July 1 and September 15, 2015

Compensation:  Starting salary range is $62,000 - $66,000 DOE.  Generous health care and pension benefits are provided by the University of Oregon.  This position will be covered by the contract negotiated between the University of Oregon and the United Academics of the University of Oregon, AAUP/AFT, AFL-CIO.

Application Procedure:  Application deadline is February 13, 2015.  Please send the following information  in  a single .pdf document: cover letter, current CV or resume, names of three references, and responses to supplemental questions (see below))  to Deb Mailander, LERC Program Manager, at dnmail@uoregon.edu with “Career Instructor Position” in the subject line.  Cover letters and any questions should be addressed to: 

Dr. Robert Bussel, Chair, Career Instructor Search Committee Labor Education and Research Center, University of Oregon

Supplemental Questions (to be answered in a total of four pages or less):

  1. Briefly describe your experiences with curriculum development, adult education, and coordinating events or conferences.

  2. Provide specific examples of your work or experience with labor unions, workers, or community-based organizations, accompanied by a discussion of the impact of your work and what you gained from the experience.  Please include examples of any work you have done with racially or ethnically diverse groups.

  3. Briefly outline your ideas for applied research or policy analysis projects that would be relevant to this position.  You can draw from past experience as well as your current professional development interests.

  4. Given the current circumstances of the union movement, what do you see as the most serious challenges or priorities facing today’s labor educators?  What does the field of labor education most need to do in order to address changing social circumstances and remain relevant to the lives of workers and unions.

We welcome applications from candidates who share our commitment to promoting and enhancing diversity.

The University of Oregon is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution committed to cultural diversity and compliance with the ADA. The University encourages all qualified individuals to apply, and does not discriminate on the basis of any protected status, including veteran and disability status.