Being a working-class academic means “Staying true to my roots, always standing alongside working class and other marginalized groups, implicating capital in my scholarship and my teaching.” — Susan

The Association of Working Class Academics advocates for students and faculty of poverty- and working-class origins, strives to implement reforms designed to assure greater class equity within colleges and universities, establishes relationships and connections between poverty- and working-class academics, and serves as an informational resource for those interested in issues affecting poverty- and working-class people.



To establish a collective voice in solidarity for WCAs seeking to raise important class-related issues throughout higher education, including the improvement of working conditions for WCAs and admissions for students of poverty- or working-class backgrounds, as well as encouraging institutions of higher education to hire more poverty/working class academics.

To act as a clearinghouse for advice and support, assisting WCAs in navigating the formal and informal academic processes, including suggestions on tenure, dissertations, financial issues, dealing with administrators and mentoring students.


To network and connect with WC/PCAs.

To work to establish on-campus faculty WCA mentors for graduate and undergraduate students on campuses.


To inform WCAs about publication possibilities and upcoming conferences both for and by WCAs.

To encourage WCAs to engage in research and to interrogate the standpoint of current research focusing on social class issues.

To introduce more courses on social class and the effects of social class origins into our respective fields.


Membership is open to faculty, graduate students, undergraduate students, staff, and administrators from working- or poverty-class backgrounds.