Labor Education Service (LES) is the primary educational outreach component of the Land Grant University of Minnesota serving working men and women of the state and region in the areas of labor relations and labor studies. The mission of the Labor Education Service is to equip workers, union officials and labor organizations with the knowledge-based tools to protect and advance their rights and responsibilities in a changing global socio-economic environment. Through these efforts, the Labor Education Service fosters economic vitality, ethical relations, and social justice in the workplace, at home and in the community.

  • 2017 Union Women & Femmes Retreat postcard

    Save the date for 2017 Union Women & Femmes Retreat!

    Mark your calendar now for the 2017 Union Women & Femmes Retreat, set for April 19 to 21 at Ruttger’s Bay Lake Lodge in the Brainerd Lakes area. The theme is “Using Our Experiences & Identities to Build Power.” The retreat is currently in the planning stages. If you would like to be part of the planning committee, please email us.

  • LES co-authors ‘State of Minnesota Unions’ report

    Just in time for Labor Day, the first “State of Minnesota Unions” report was released Sept. 2, 2016 at the AFL-CIO Labor Pavilion at the Minnesota State Fair.
    The report presents an overview of all sectors of unionized employment in the state and analyzes the effect unions have on wages and benefits. It was co-authored by Monica Bielski Boris of the University of Minnesota Labor Education Service along with researchers from the Midwest Economic Policy Institute, the University of Illinois and the Illinois Economic Policy Institute. Read more.

Labor Studies Skills Courses

Registration for 2016-17 is OPEN! Download the application, or Register OnLine.

These non-credit courses provide a foundation in "nuts & bolts" areas important to working people. Classes are open to all. Sessions are held on the West Bank of the University's Minneapolis campus. Room locations will be sent to you when we confirm registration. For more information call 612-624-5020 or e-mail

Minnesota Union Leadership Program

Running from October 2016 through May 2017, this unique educational program helps unions and related organizations develop and strengthen leaders, equipping participants with the knowledge and skills to address the challenges facing the labor movement. Deadline to apply for the 2016-17 program ended June 20.  

Media Services

The Labor Education Service is unique among American labor education programs in offering an array of general and customized media services. They include video production, Internet services and the Workday Minnesota website.

Women's Programs

The Labor Education Service provides an on-going series of opportunities for working women to enhance their leadership skills and network on issues important to them. To participate in planning women’s events, contact the LES office, 612-624-5020 or e-mail us.

Customized Training

LES offers customized education to union locals, councils and districts in a broad number of subject areas, all specifically tailored to your union's and members' needs. We are available to bring the education to you or offer training in an on-campus setting. Training is also available in any number of time formats: weekdays/evenings or weekends.