Faculty at Minneapolis College of Art and Design Prepare Union Election to Join SEIU Local 284

Over 100 part-time and full-time faculty from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design will vote in an election to form a faculty union with the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 284 this week. Faculty filed for election in August after a majority of faculty signed cards in support of forming a union so they could gain a stronger voice at MCAD.

Ballots were mailed out yesterday by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) and will be counted on Wednesday, October 19.

“For me, this is about the future of higher education,” Dawn Pankonien, a Political Economist, said. “It is about ensuring pay rates and job security that will allow not only secondary but also primary household earners to assume positions as educators without needing to arrive at their morning lectures after working night shifts in other industries.”

If successful, MCAD faculty would join over 13,000 faculty across the country who have formed unions with SEIU Faculty Forward in the last three years, including several arts colleges. Adjunct faculty at nearby Hamline University won their first union contract with SEIU Local 284 earlier this year, securing raises for all part-time faculty with the increases ranging from a 15 to 30 percent.