Loyola Marymount University Faculty Union

NTT Faculty do most of the teaching at LMU. Yet we endure short-term contracts, job insecurity, and minimal opportunities to advance at the university. What is more, our wages make it difficult to survive in one of the most expensive regions in the United States—so many of us take other jobs to make ends meet. And we lack access to the time and funds that are necessary for completing our research and other academic work that helps us grow in our professions. Many of us have given years—sometimes decades—of service under these conditions. No worker should live with this precarity, and all educators should have the chance to grow. Read our letter to fellow faculty members.

About the Campaign

Faculty at Loyola Marymount University (LMU) are coming together to improve our campus and address its multiple crises. For too long, faculty have been marginalized at LMU, with most relegated to contingent, non-tenure-track positions that offer low pay, inadequate benefits, no job security, no meaningful academic freedom, and no true opportunity to share governance with our administration. This is unjust and unfair, and we have had enough. We do the core work of our university, and we deserve respect.

Though we have different titles — Lecturer, Senior Lecturer, Instructor, Senior Instructor, Clinical Faculty, Visiting Faculty, Field Work Instructor, Postdoctoral Instructor, and more — we have common goals. We all endeavor to advance our respective fields, improve how we prepare and mentor the next generation of leaders in academia and beyond, and create a strong campus community built on learning and service.

LMU’s administration has repeatedly raised tuition on students and increased the size of its endowment, yet it refuses to adequately invest in the universities’ primary function: quality instruction and teaching. Instead, administrators have other priorities — fundraising, campus amenities, new legacy construction, and more.

The time has come for faculty, students, families, alumni, conscientious administrators, and faith communities to reclaim LMU and build alliances beyond our campus that create the power needed to reform higher education across the nation.

Frequently Asked Questions

LMU non-tenure-track faculty are coming together to address the crisis in higher education. Non-tenure-track faculty teach the majority of LMU classes, yet we face low levels of compensation, poor benefits, lack of institutional support for research and scholarship, and exclusion from governance. By coming together to form a union, we can raise standards for non-tenure-track faculty and have a real voice in the decisions that affect us and the students we teach.
The Service Employees International Union (SEIU) is the leader in representation of academic non-tenure-track faculty and represents other academic institutions in California. More than 40,000 faculty across the county have organized to SEIU. All non-tenure-track faculty in the California State University system are members of SEIU, through its affiliate the California Faculty Association (CFA).
We embody and control every aspect of our union. As members of SEIU, we ARE the union and are committed to working with faculty across the nation to build a powerful organization, giving faculty a real voice in higher education.
Forming a union enables non-tenure-track faculty to negotiate collectively for better terms of employment, using democratic processes to ensure that the interests of all non-tenure-track faculty are represented. A union contract will establish a floor for what constitutes fair treatment and compensation, not a ceiling. At present, there is a ceiling but no floor.
No one will pay any union dues until we negotiate a contract establishing agreed-upon terms of employment for non-tenure-track faculty. This contract is then ratified by non-tenure-track faculty through a democratic election. Dues are 1.5% of our base pay per pay period and do not apply to bonuses, differentials, or anything on top. There are no initiation fees. No faculty member will pay dues for periods of time that you are not receiving a paycheck from the university.
Yes. Federal law protects your right to organize a union. Under the National Labor Relations Act, you have the right to talk to your fellow faculty in the workplace about your views on unionization, organize with your coworkers to make your collective views known, attend meetings to discuss the benefits of union representation, and to distribute information to your coworkers about the union. It is against the law for an employer to threaten, coerce, or retaliate against you for exercising these legal rights in the workplace.
It is your legally protected right to join with your coworkers to organize for union representation. If you have been threatened or intimidated for exercising your rights in the workplace, please contact Kevin Reyes 213-308-1655 or kevin.reyes@seiu721.org
Yes, you are allowed to talk to union organizers during regular work hours to the same extent as you can talk to other non-university employees about non-work matters while at work.
Yes, you are allowed to distribute literature to your fellow faculty during regular work hours to the same extent as you can distribute other information to colleagues during this time. However, distribution of literature should not interrupt instruction time.
Yes, you may speak to union organizers on university property to the same extent you are allowed to speak with other individuals who are not associated with the university in areas that are not restricted to university personnel.
Yes, you are allowed to send emails to your fellow faculty using your university email account to the same extent that you can send emails containing non-work information using your university email account. However, these emails should be sent during nonworking time.
We will continue organizing to grow our non-tenure-track faculty union on campus and mobilize with SEIU Local 721 members, LMU students, and community allies to demand for LMU Administrators to recognize our union.
The collective power of a union will make our participation in the Faculty Senate more meaningful.
While participation in the Faculty Senate can work well for addressing academic issues, there are rarely mechanisms for faculty engagement around salaries, benefits, and all other terms of employment.
In the California State University system, the Faculty Senate governs academic issues, while the union negotiates workplace and employment issues. Union members there have successfully used the power of their union to protect faculty voice in academic governance.
Across the country, faculty who have organized with SEIU have seen significant gains in wages, benefits, job security, and professional development resources.
Faculty at Occidental College, Otis College of Art and Design, Tufts University, Lesley University, Georgetown University, and Fordham University all made significant gains in their first contracts. See the “Union Difference.”
This has not happened in any faculty contract negotiated by our union, SEIU. In fact, faculty at Occidental College, Otis College of Art and Design, Tufts University, Lesley University, Georgetown University, and Fordham University all made significant gains in their first contract negotiations.

The Union Difference

Why We're Organizing

Dear LMU Colleagues – A Letter From The Organizing Committee

Dear Colleagues, We’re writing to tell you about our campaign to improve working conditions for non-tenure track faculty (NTT Faculty) at LMU. NTT Faculty do most of the teaching at LMU. Yet we endure short-term contracts, job insecurity, and minimal opportunities to advance at the university. What is more, our … Read More

LMU Digital Toolkit

In order to grow our Loyola Marymount University NTT Faculty union, we need to be proud and public. An easy way to spread our message is through our existing social media channels. We’ve put together a social toolkit with helpful graphics that you can post to your channels to explain … Read More

Los Angeles Loyolan: Students must support the non-tenure-track unionization effort

On Nov. 3, 30 non-tenure-track (NTT) faculty announced an effort to unionize, distributing a letter calling for their colleagues to join them in establishing an NTT union at LMU. They outlined grievances with pay, academic freedom and job stability, echoing the issues that led to an earlier unionization effort in … Read More

Los Angeles Loyolan: Non-tenure track faculty declare unionization effort

A group of non-tenure track (NTT) faculty members distributed a letter on Nov. 3 announcing their effort to unionize. This public gesture by the LMU NTT Faculty Organizing Committee marks the first serious attempt at a non-tenured faculty union in a decade. Containing 30 NTT faculty signatures, the letter sent … Read More

“I’m imagining what a University organized around collective liberation would look like and I believe that working together in support of our needs is an important step towards that.”
Iris Blake
Visiting Assistant Professor
Women & Gender Studies

“As a proud member of the California Faculty Association (the CSU faculty union) I have seen first-hand that collectively bargaining, not individually begging, is the best path toward achieving the fair treatment and job security we deserve here at LMU.”
Darrin Murray
Senior Lecturer
College of Communication & Fine Arts

“I support the unionization effort because NTT faculty at LMU need job security and better pay. We make this university work and we deserve to be treated with dignity. Only a union can provide this.”
Ben Radcliffe
Classics & Archeology

“An LMU education would be worth nothing without the work we do in the classroom, yet many of us find ourselves struggling to afford a decent standard of living. It’s time we came together to demand fair wages, job security, and a democratic say in our workplace.”
Bryan Wisch
Rhetorical Arts

“My father, a grade school teacher, used to say that if not for unions, my family would have starved. As a non-tenure track faculty member, I am now experiencing what it would have been like for grade school teachers to be without unions. After decades of doing things the administration’s way, it’s time for change. It’s time for a union.”
Arik Greenberg
Clinical Assistant Professor
Department of Theological Studies

“In spring 2023, I taught six courses across three campuses — including LMU’s — just to make ends meet. Some weeks, I worked 80 hours or more. As an NTT professor, you don’t make enough, so you must do more than what should be reasonably expected. Something must change. That’s why I support forming a union.”
Mark Gaynor
Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts

LMU Digital Authorization Card

  • I support working alongside my co-workers at LMU to create a stronger voice in decisions affecting our workplace, families, and future. My signature authorizes the Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Local 721 to serve as my exclusive representative for purposes of engaging in collective bargaining with my employer regarding my hours, wages, and terms and conditions of employment. I understand this authorization card can be used by SEIU Local 721 to establish support among employees for a NLRB election and/or to obtain voluntary recognition as my exclusive collective bargaining representative.
  • Employee Information

    By providing my cellular telephone number, I understand that SEIU and its locals and affiliates may use automated calling technologies and/or text message me on my cellular phone on a periodic basis. SEIU will never charge for text message alerts. Carrier message and data rates may apply to such alerts. To stop receiving messages, text STOP to 721721. Text HELP to 721721 for more information.
  • If you work in a specific department please list it. If not please leave it blank.
  • Signature

    Please check the box above to confirm