About our Education Program

Why is union education important?

Every UAW member has a right to access educational tools that allow full participation in their union.

Union power flows from an educated, well-informed membership.  As members grow in their union education, they recommit themselves to the mission of the labor movement and invigorate their local unions.  Active engagement and solidarity in our membership translates into better contracts, stronger communities, and improved quality of life for working families.

Our union education program is designed to develop members’ understanding of our shared values of unionism in principle, while also learning the mechanics, structure, and function of the UAW.  Members who take advantage of educational opportunities tend to get involved in local union standing committees, step into leadership roles, and take action on important issues that matter to working people.  We work hard to develop members’ skills so that they can be effective in bargaining strong contracts and enforcing them at their worksites.  Importantly, educated members hold their union leadership accountable to them, and they push relentlessly for the continuous improvement of our great union.

We pride ourselves on providing a robust education program for our members in Region 1.  In 2019 alone, Region 1 members logged 2,078 class completions.  We strive to increase those numbers each year.  We also encourage and offer assistance to our local unions in developing their own Education Committees with trained member-facilitators who can deliver educational workshops at their locals.

What classes are offered by UAW Region 1?

UAW Region 1 has several fully-equipped classrooms, an auditorium, and a pavilion onsite that host a wide range of classes for the membership throughout the year.  We also develop targeted training programs based on need or by special request from our local unions.

Classes are typically offered quarterly, meeting over the course of 4 to 5 class sessions.  Registration information is sent to our local unions and posted here as it becomes available.

Recent class offerings have included:

  • Grievance Handling
  • Advanced Grievance Handling
  • Arbitration
  • Advanced Arbitration
  • Labor, the Global Economy, and You
  • Understanding Contracts
  • Social Unionism
  • Bread Box to the Ballot Box
  • Collective Bargaining

In addition to the longer courses, we often offer stand-alone workshops based on relevance and need.  Those workshops have included:

  • Understanding Bargaining and Strikes
  • Media Training
  • Election Committee Training
  • SolidWeb/Communications Training

Of course, local unions always have the option to request specific training tailored to their needs.  Please follow proper request protocol to take advantage of this option.

Who can attend Region 1 classes?

All Region 1 active and retired members in good standing are welcome and encouraged to attend classes.  Please be aware that due to space restrictions and overwhelming demand, we occasionally have to limit class sizes.

How do I sign up?

Your local union president or financial secretary must verify your membership status and submit a registration form on your behalf. 

Is there a cost?

No.  These classes are provided as a service to our dues-paying membership.  The only expectation is that members dedicate their time to attend and fully engage in class discussion!

Where and when do classes meet?

Classes meet at the UAW Region 1 facility: 27800 George Merrelli Dr, Warren, MI 48092.

Details about class offerings, meeting times, and registration are sent to our local unions in a call letter and posted on this website as they become available.

Classes are typically offered quarterly, meeting weekly over the course of 4 to 5 sessions.  Each session typically lasts 2 hours.  We do our best to accommodate different schedules by offering some classes in the morning (10 AM-12 PM) and others in the evening (5 PM-7 PM).  Members must sign in and attend a sufficient number of class sessions in order to receive a certificate of completion.

I want to request specific training for my local union.  What should I do?

Talk to your local union leadership.  Your local president can request training from Region 1 as needed.

Additionally, we encourage local unions to activate their Education Committees so that you can host your own workshops!  We can help you train members on facilitation skills and offer co-teaching support as needed.  Trained Education Committee members are granted access to a selection of ready-to-use curricula and materials developed by the International Education Department.

How can I attend educational conferences at Black Lake?

In addition to local and regional education opportunities, UAW members have access to a wide range of educational conferences and institutes hosted throughout the year at the Walter and May Reuther Family Educational Center at Black Lake.  Conferences are hosted by the International Education Department, the Health and Safety Department, the Women’s Department, and others, and they provide targeted learning paths to meet the needs of members at all levels of experience.

Conferences and institutes offered in recent years have included:

  • Education Committees
  • Employee Assistance Programs (EAP)
  • Family Scholarship
  • Young Workers
  • Community Services
  • Standing Committees
  • Leadership Essentials
  • Michigan New Member Orientation
  • Retirees

Region 1 is given an allotment for how many members we can send to each conference.  Call letters announcing conference details are sent to the local unions by Region 1 as they become available.  For more information about how to register for opportunities at Black Lake, talk to your local union leadership.