Amalgamated Transit Union Buys Natl. Labor College Campus

WASHINGTON—The Amalgamated Transit Union has bought the now-vacant National Labor College campus in Washington’s Maryland suburbs, the union said on July 30.  The union will move its headquarters there and run training programs there as well.

The campus is closed after the college, which was broke, closed its doors after this year’s class graduated.  Remaining students have been placed elsewhere.  The NLC was the nation’s only college dedicated to labor-related studies, such as collective bargaining, organizing, mobilizing and grievance handling.

“Today the ATU has stepped up and assumed a greater leadership role in the molding of minds, values and progressive reform for both Canada and the United States, where we represent more than 190,000 workers,” union President Larry Hanley said.  “The state-of-the-art conference and training center will again be a hub of activity for ATU and the entire labor movement.”

ATU has trained more than 10,000 members this year and plans to do so at the NLC campus in Silver Spring, Md.  It will also make the campus available to other unions and progressive groups.  One news report, which the union did not confirm, said it paid $31.4 million for the campus.

The college “represents a new beginning in terms of our capacity to train not only our leaders and members, but also those who work every day to improve the life of our society,” Hanley said.

“The campus has been the preeminent training facility for organized labor over the past 40 years,” Hanley continues. “ATU will build on and expand that legacy to educate and train new generations of workers and activists across North America and the world who share our values.”