Who We Are

Syracuse Graduate Employees United is a group of student workers who want the increased representation for graduate employees that a union provides. We have been organizing since spring 2016. Graduate student workers across the U.S. have increased their salaries and benefits by unionizing.

If we successfully unionize, we can work toward similar goals and other improvements to our working conditions that would be democratically decided upon as a legally recognized collective body of graduate employees.

students at a rally

What Other Grad Unions Have Won

At New York University:


  • 38% increase in minimum stipends, and a 15% increase for the small number already making more than the minimum

  • elimination of health insurance premium sharing (a savings of $1000 annually)

  • guaranteed tuition/fee waivers for all graduate employees

  • a fair grievance procedure

  • protection against having RA/TA appointments withdrawn at the last minute

  • workload protections

  • increased child care subsidies

  • $100 per day for required pre-semester training or orientation

  • guaranteed annual minimum increases on total compensation, which protects and insures increases in stipends and other pay. During the current academic year, funded PhD TAs who teach both semesters will receive at least $37,783

  • implementation of a family healthcare fund to provide up to 75% of premium subsidies

  • implementation of a childcare fund, which provided a benefit to bargaining unit members of $2,140 per child in the first year of the contract

  • improved dental benefit amounting to a savings of $240 per year


At the University of Oregon:


  • “Graduate Student Assistance Fund” established to provide funds to students facing financial hardship

  • SEVIS fee reimbursement for international students

  • Paid graduate student position for working on issues related to grad students with children


At the University of Connecticut:


  • Promotional stipend increases upon achieving Masters Status and PhD candidacy

  • Student parking permits at 50% of the commuter rate

  • Guaranteed maternity and paternity leave

  • Job security provisions