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Student Activism at University of Maryland

A guide to researching student activism at UMD using student newspapers.

Students have been vocal on campus for economic justice in a variety of ways. For example, they formed pro-labor student groups like Frontlash, picketed department stores using sweatshop labor, and opposed the lay-offs of faculty and staff. Student newspapers report labor organizing by students on behalf of staff members on campus as well as protests against budget cuts and tuition hikes. Currently, students are advocating for protections for staff during the COVID-19 pandemic, graduate students are working for labor organizing rights, and students are vocal for fair housing practices.

Protest Driving for Annapolis

1991 - SGA sponsored a caravan taking campus protesters to Annapolis to demonstrate in opposition of campus budget cuts. 


More Than 500 March During Campus Protest

1991 - 500 Students and Faculty rallied in the Reckord Armory to protest campus budget cuts.

Protesters Rally Against Sweatshops

2000 - UMD students demonstrated in front of Kohl's department store in Silver Spring due to their alleged use of sweatshop factories. The students were joined by National Labor Committee Chair, Charles Kernaghan.

Union-Backed Group Protest Nike Presence

1996 - Pro-labor student group, Frontlash, held a protest during a football game to protest campus connections to Nike Corporation. 


Students Protest Spiraling Educational Expenses

1976 - Students traveled to Annapolis to protest the 1976 University budget and rising education costs.

Labor Rally Draws 250,000

1981 - The AFL-CIO organized a Solidarity Day Rally that drew a crowd of 250,000 to D.C. to protest the Reagan administration's economic policies. The rally was attended by campus groups as well as labor and civil rights groups.