Check out The People’s Reconstruction Series that we are organizing for the month of January addressing issues related to Hurricane Sandy. See more details here. For a relevant text on these issues, check out the living report put together by Strike Debt entitled “Shouldering the Costs: Who Pays in the Aftermath of Hurricane Sandy?”

Occupy University (OccU) is a university for everyone which believes that learning should be collaborative and politically empowering. We organize our educational encounters (some spontaneously, while others far in advance) to offer anti-institutional modes of learning, and respond to current crises and community interests. Our commitment to horizontal pedagogy intends to break the traditional hierarchy of the academy, with the belief that each person has something to teach and something to learn.

Our free courses have included “History of May Day and the General Strike”, “Radical Economics”, “Occupy Algebra”, “New York Comics and Picture-story Symposium”, and “Critical Walking”. The fall 2012 “Debt Series” was made up of workshops, conversations, lectures, and roundtables hosted by Trade School, Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts and Momenta Art. We are currently planning a series about the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.

OccU was founded in New York City in September 2011 as part of the Education and Empowerment working group of the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Check out our current OccU encounters (Horizontal Pedagogy, Picture Story Symposium, and Freeganism 101) while we continue to work to create new educational experiences occupy-style.

If you’re interested in organizing an encounter or class, email us at owsuniversity@gmail.com.

If you’re interested in what we’re doing, and you’re in the New York area, contact us – you’ll find we’re very friendly.

If you’re not in the New York region, why not get in touch with Occupiers in your area, and start up your own Occupy University?

We’re helping people to set up courses on all sorts of topics, in many neighborhoods throughout the New York area. If this sounds like something you’d like to be involved in, get in touch! Email us at owsuniversity@gmail.com or fill out our contact form.

With the help of brilliant, fascinating, motivated people like you!

Would you like to learn something? Would you like to teach something?
We’re looking for thoughtful and intelligent proposals for great educational activities of all kinds – classes, courses, walking tours, reading groups, apprenticeships… whatever you’re excited about.  If you’d like to suggest a class, or would just like to take one, please email us at owsuniversity@gmail.com.

Or perhaps you’d like to help us build our University? If so, we encourage you to join our Occupy University Working Group. You’ll be very welcome!

The Occupy University Working Group generally meets on Monday evenings or Saturday afternoons. Email to confirm.

The Occupy movement has inspired many of us to question the way education proceeds in our society – and to try to do something about it.  We have many thoughts on this, and we’d love to hear yours, too.

Here are two of our first ideas, just to get you thinking:

1) An idea about what we might want to learn

2) An idea about how we might want to learn


  1. tihkalian

    Great work Occupy University. Also, great ideas from everyone here so far. We just need to do what we’re doing, and forget abou the government. Free and Self-education by the Occupy community–what could be better. I love it. I just finished a 40+ paper on Occupy, and hope to develop it into a graduate thesis possibly. I’d love to share it with whoever wants it. The draft I completed was for a class paper in my Political Movements course (an awesome btw) I’m taking at UTSA, but I’ll be developing the research further as I progress w/ my studies. It incorporates comparative historical research in the field of social movement theory, compares Occupy to IWW and ties it to #M15, as well as discussing the possibility of an anarchist future, along the lines of Murray Bookchin’s post-scarcity anarchsim notions.

  2. Mark H.

    There are free universities out there, and free classes as well, e.g. kahn academy. However, I love the idea of a free university coming out of the occupy movement! I’m not sure how I could contribute, but it is something I’d like to perhaps get involved in. This university, I think, should not be just for those in NY, but for anyone around the world. The Occupy movement is much larger than NY, and so it’s University should be, too. I see the University as a major “teach-in” that provides solid useful information and solid reliable sources for the occupiers. It could cover everything from money management to tips for what to do when you are arrested, to how to write up pertinent court documents, to how to effectively engage our politicians, to how to effectively organize people, and how to keep demonstrations peaceful. I teach Psychology and Criminal Justice classes, so I’m not sure how I can contribute, but you guys certainly have my support!

  3. Lionel

    You should start a course on how the federal reserve came to be, how president woodrow wilson signed the act and later regretted it and how it was all part of a plan to infiltrate our government and take control of our economy and force us into debt slavery. Also, check out http://www.livefreenow.org, and educate the people on how the IRS is a scam, and while I believe in paying taxes there should be another alternative… look into the fair tax act as a better alternative. In order to defeat the enemy, we have to learn its history, how it came into being, who were and are the players and who is pulling the strings. Only then can we implement a strategy, by using logistics and fine tuning are targets, to be done with surgical precision can we then defeat the corrupt system that benefits only the few.

  4. Jonathan

    I want to learn about how Occupy and the 99% can get involved in alternative/complementary currency.

  5. Joanna Bujes

    I’d love to get something like this started in Oakland (Bay Area). I’m an ex tenure track professor who left academia because I did not want to be an intellectual policeman. Please keep me posted.

  6. kevin wooten

    How about a class on what the “tea party” was really about….hint: not a protest against taxes.

  7. anthony criscola

    Courses: History of representative gov’t in US from the Federalists Papers to the Modern Era.
    History of the Labor Movement in US.
    History of the Protest Movement in US from the Boston Tea Party to 1968.

  8. Maria Cucurella Miquel

    I’d like to be aware of whatever you do even if I don’t live in NY. I’d really appreciate to recieve infos per email and get it touch. Thanks!