Skip to Content

Labor Studies

Overview

Labor Studies is an interdisciplinary degree program that lets you explore both sides of the labor/management equation. You will learn about the impact of historical events as well as the changing nature of local, national and international industries and workplaces.

As a Labor Studies student at Hofstra you will obtain perspective on the world of work from a variety of disciplines, but where you finally concentrate your studies is very much up to you. You may choose to learn more about employment and pay inequality, job migration and other important issues of social justice. Perhaps you will delve more deeply into the psychological, sociological and motivational aspects of work to prepare yourself for success in a corporate environment, or immerse yourself in the legal aspects of employment as a precursor to work with labor unions or a career in labor law.

Hofstra has achieved international renown through its Center for the Study of Labor and Democracy (CLD). This non-profit research institute aims to expand public understanding and discussion of important issues facing working people, producing policy-relevant studies of labor problems and institutions. These encompass not only regional labor market issues, but national and global labor policies. Hofstra's Labor Studies students often work with the Center to conduct original research, design and implement surveys, organize lectures, workshops, seminars and conferences, and publish periodic reports and working papers, including the highly respected Regional Labor Review. In addition, Hofstra's Maurice A. Deane School of Law has long been a leader in the field of labor and employment law and publishes the Labor & Employment Law Journal, which is ranked sixth nationally in the category of employment law journals.

We also encourage Labor Studies students to pursue independent study in specific areas of interest, and help facilitate internships with business, nonprofit agencies, and labor unions. Labor Studies prepares you to succeed in graduate programs in labor and industrial relations, business, education, law, public administration, and the social sciences. You will also be well-equipped to take on rewarding careers in business, government, law, teaching, social work, and labor unions.

In the New York region, graduates with a bachelor’s degree in labor studies earn an average annual salary of $53,846 and job growth for this major is projected to increase about nine percent by 2026, according to New York area labor market data retrieved in July 2018 by Burning Glass Technologies.

Above all, your work in Labor Studies at Hofstra will give you the tools to shape and navigate the complex web of interacting — and sometimes conflicting — needs of individuals, corporations, communities and nations. No matter where your interests lie, Hofstra's Labor Studies program gives you the flexibility to find your niche and launch a rewarding career.

Curriculum

The BA in Labor Studies curriculum at Hofstra is designed to give you a broad understanding of different aspects and approaches to major employment issues in an international context. The program coordinates courses from departments throughout the university, including business, economics, history, law, psychology, sociology and other disciplines.

Beyond a core curriculum covering such areas as labor history and economics, labor and employment law, protest and reform in American history, and collective bargaining, you will choose from electives such as:

  • Economic History of the United States
  • Immigrants and American Society
  • Human Resources Management
  • Economics of Discrimination
  • Work Motivation: Theory and Applications
  • Anthropology of the Global Economy
  • Globalization, Women and Development

Some students choose to enroll in Hofstra's dual-degree program in Labor Studies, earning a BA in Labor Studies and an MBA in just five years. This accelerated program puts you on the fast track to a professional career, with a significant savings in time and tuition.

There is also a minor in Labor Studies.

Up-to-date information about required classes and more is available in the Hofstra Bulletin.

BA in Labor Studies

Recent Alumni Outcomes

Labor Studies students at Hofstra are ready to achieve success in academic, corporate, government, and non-profit jobs, or to pursue an advanced degree.

Recent graduates of Hofstra's Labor Studies program are employed in a variety of government and corporate settings, including:

  • Altice USA
  • First Indemnity Of America Insurance Company,
  • Microsoft
  • Wells Fargo
  • Prudential Financial
  • Yankee Institute for Public Policy

Recent Labor Studies alumni are pursuing graduate degrees at Stanford University, Columbia University, Columbia University, Johns Hopkins University, New York University, and the University of Michigan, among others.

99% are employed, grad school or both
89% accept a position within six months
$46K median salary
More about alumni outcomes

Internship/Experience

Teacher with students

The Labor Studies program at Hofstra offers plenty of ways for you to dig into the practical applications of what you learn in the classroom. Many of our students participate in internships with local and regional businesses, labor unions and more. These experiences provide invaluable real-world insights into workplace dynamics, as well as the chance learn general business skills and build a resume while earning college credits. What's more, many internships have led to full-time jobs with the same employer, or in the same area of business or government.

Examples of internships held by Labor Studies students are:

  • Ernst & Young, LLP
  • American Legislative Exchange Council
  • Allred, Bacon, Halfhill & Young, PC
  • Congressman Peter King
  • U.S. Department of Justice

Hofstra's own Center for the Study of Labor and Democracy also offers a variety of exciting opportunities for students to engage in meaningful, hands-on work in the field. You might help our faculty conduct original research projects or surveys, or help coordinate lectures or conferences featuring renowned experts on critical issues of our time. You might even have your own short research papers or book reviews published in the 20-year-old Regional Labor Review magazine — a prized opportunity for undergraduates at any university.

The many conferences and lectures presented by the Center will expose you to ideas and experts involved in the full gamut of issues affecting society. For example, some recent conferences/lectures have included:

  • The Immigration & Deportation Crisis
  • Youth Employment Conference
  • Globalization Day
  • Equal Pay Day
  • May Day at the Movies: Comedy and Tragedy at Work

In addition to coursework, research opportunities and potential internships, many of our students also take full advantage of Hofstra's broad array of organizations and activities. Not only do these help them find friendship and camaraderie, but they also afford other ways to explore the variety of disciplines involved in Labor Relations. For example, you might choose to join Hofstra's Economics Association, become involved with the Center for Civic Engagement, or any of a number of fraternal or service organizations. All of these let you expand your knowledge and build professional contacts and lifelong friendships.

Meet Dr. Mary Anne Trasciatti

 
 

Dr. Trasciatti, an associate professor of rhetoric who teaches classes in the history of labor and of worker protest, is president of Remember the Triangle Fire Coalition, which is building a permanent memorial at the Lower Manhattan site of the 1911 fire that killed 146 mostly immigrant women garment workers. The fire, one of the deadliest workplace disasters in U.S. history, led to major safety and labor reforms. Here, she discusses her work with the Coalition.