Undergraduate courses in “Industrial Relations” have a long history at UCLA, dating at least to 1945 when the California legislature created the Institute of Industrial Relations with a mandate to conduct research, offer courses on campus, and extension services to labor and management. Since 2003, the undergraduate Labor & Workplace Studies minor has introduced hundreds of UCLA students to the world of work, labor unions, and working-class social movements. Students in the minor go beyond classroom learning to engage in
hands-on research and service in the Los Angeles community.
Labor Studies Minor
Transform your education to transform your community
The Labor and Workplace Studies (LBR&WS) minor offers UCLA undergraduates an opportunity to learn about the workplace and the social, political, and economic forces that influence it. The minor places emphasis on the labor market, public policy, employment relations, unions, and working-class movements. It also explores issues of race, class, and gender in the workplace. This interdisciplinary approach offers students an in-depth understanding of a broad array of issues related to labor and the workplace. The minor helps prepare students for a variety of careers, including labor relations, human resource management, law, domestic and international government work, worker organizing, and economic forecasting. The minor currently enrolls approximately 100 students and facilitates over 200 student placements annually.
By critically analyzing the theory and practice of current workplace issues, students develop a deeper understanding of the relationships between their education and society at large and how they, as college graduates, can transform the nature of work. The minor offers:
- Labor Studies Minor Courses provide students with high quality academic coursework and applied research skills around the current and future state of work in the US and abroad.
- Service-Learning opportunities offered through the Labor and Workplace Minor engage students with professionals, community activists, and the public to gain critical perspectives on the minor’s core subjects
- The Labor Summer Research Internship Program is an applied research internship for students to develop research methodology skills within the context of a local organization.
- The Student Leadership Academy places recent graduates in eight-week, full-time, paid internships with labor organizations to give emerging student leaders real-world experience.