Throughout Penn’s “Graduate Student Appreciation Week” (4/3-4/7), GET-UP released testimonials from graduate student workers on multiple issues they’ve experienced while at Penn, and what a union could do to help solve them. You can see a recap of the issues discussed during the first week here and during the second week here.

The donuts from “Graduate Student Appreciation Week” may be gone, but we’re going to keep on releasing issues for the next week. Today, we’re talking about Diversity:

I want a union

This week, English 1st year PhD student Jeremy Gallion tells us why he joined GET-UP. Do you want to share your story? Get in touch! #getupgrads

“GET-UP gives students of color and their families a stronger voice in combating profiling and discrimination across campus, whether it be from Penn employees, students, or faculty.”

Posted by GET-UP on Wednesday, April 26, 2017


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Statement of Faculty Support for GET-UP efforts:

As faculty members of the University of Pennsylvania, we welcome efforts being made by GET-UP to unionize the graduate student workers (GSWs) in our university. We believe that graduate students have the right to unionize, a right confirmed by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB). GET-UP has been active in organizing a union for over a decade now, and while their earlier effort was stymied by the then NLRB, recent NLRB rulings have allowed them to revive their mobilizing drive.


GET-UP is not just a group of graduate students, a campaign to be recognized as employees, and a venue for grievances: we are a union. A union is both a community of interest that unites for the purposes of collectively bargaining a contract and a collective of people who have each other’s backs. We believe that a contract produced by collective bargaining could address general and specific issues facing graduate students, as well as guarantee more democratic avenues for grads to participate in the institution.