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School of Labor &
Employment Relations
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

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Women in Labor History - Teacher Training

Event Type
labor education
Labor Education Program, Research Cluster on Public History and Student Research, Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities
Labor and Employment Relations Building, Basement room 35, 504 E. Armory Ave., Champaign, Illinois 6182
Mar 11, 2017   9:00 am - 4:00 pm  
Stephanie Fortado, Mike Matejka, Anke Voss, Kathryn Oberdeck
Stephanie Fortado



8:30 - 9 am  Coffee and Registration


9 - 9:30 am  Why Teach Labor History?

Stephanie Fortado, Labor Education Program, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

This half-hour presentation will explore the value of incorporating labor history into the classroom.


9:30 - 11:30 am  Illinois Women in Labor History

Mike Matejka, Illinois Labor History Society, Vice President

This session will provide an overview of the remarkable contributions of women to the Illinois labor      movement, nationally significant improvements to workplace health and safety, and building a more         inclusive labor market for women and people of color.  Featuring some of the key women and institutions, such as Lucy Parsons, the women of Hull House, the formation of the Coalition of Labor Union Women,    Addie Wyatt, and many more stories, this session will providing a strong grounding on Illinois women’s transformative roles in US Labor History.


11:30 am - 12:30 pm  Lunch


12:30 - 2:00 pm  Mother Jones

Stephanie Fortado, Labor Education Program, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

This session will focus on one of the most remarkable figures in labor history, Mary Harris “Mother” Jones.  An Irish Immigrant to the United States, Mother Jones, became involved in the labor movement late in life after significant personal tragedy.  We will watch a short documentary about her life, and then explore ways to incorporate the story of this remarkable women into the classroom.


2:00 - 3:30 pm Urbana Nurses Strike: Local Labor History

Anke Voss, Director of Archives & Special Collections, The Urbana Free Library

Local libraries are often untapped treasure troves of archival materials and resources for classroom

instruction.  Yet all too often these treasures remain unconnected to classroom learning.  This session will help bridge that gap between archives and classrooms, by inviting teachers to a hands-on exploration of one rich local primary source archives on the history of the Illinois Nurses Association’s in east-central Illinois  focusing on a 1970s nurses strike in Urbana, Illinois.


3:30 - 4 pm  Women’s Labor History in the Classroom

Kathryn Oberdeck, History Department, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign &

Stephanie Fortado, Labor Education Program, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign 

This final session will provide teachers an opportunity to consider how to bring the content and materials shared throughout the day into their classrooms.  The session will include time for group collaboration and sharing of best-practices, to ensure that the content delivered has practical means of enhancing classroom learning. 

Questions?  Email or call 217-300-1701


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