Newly Unionized College Adjunct Professors Cashing In with New Collective Bargaining Agreements

Over the past few years, we have seen a flurry of college adjunct professors across the country join unions. Most appear to be joining the Service Employees Industrial Union (SEIU). According to the propaganda released by researchers at the SEIU, the adjuncts are joining their union in droves:

  • In Boston, 20% of adjunct faculty at traditional private colleges were represented by a union in 2012. Now 48% have a union and 4,100 have united with SEIU alone.
  • In San Francisco Bay area, union density grew from 21% in 2012 to 71% today.
  • Nearly 40% of Chicago adjuncts are unionized, up from 25% in 2012.
  • In Minneapolis/St. Paul, there were 0 unions at private colleges in 2012. Today, 27% have a union.

And those who have joined their union are much better off for having done so. For example:

  • 63% of the SEIU Faculty Forward first contracts include pay raises of at least 20% for the lowest paid faculty.
  • 43% of contracts have pay raises of 30% or more for the lowest paid.
  • Over 70% of new SEIU Faculty Forward contracts include a professional development program worth over $550,000.

Per the SEIU researchers, “this is all just to illustrate, with numbers, a fact that has always been true, whether you are a college professor or a janitor: if you unionize, your workplace will get more than you have now, and the reason your boss does not want you to do so is because they don’t want to give you more.”

Up to you if you believe that rhetoric. But one thing is certain, the cost of a college education just skyrocketed.

Matt Austin owns Austin Legal, LLC, a boutique law firm based in Ohio that limits its representation to employers dealing with labor, employment, and OSHA matters. You can reach Matt by calling him at (614) 285-5342 or emailing him at