A majority of grad workers have pledged to vote YES!

More than 1600 graduate workers at Northwestern University have pledged to vote yes in our union election. The MAJORITY of graduate workers at Northwestern are saying a resolute YES TO OUR UNION!


We are voting YES because we deserve:


  • Competitive Pay through Graduation Day

  • Comprehensive Healthcare

  • Support for International Students

  • Professional Standards in Labs & Classrooms

  • Power & Protection in Our Workplace


We’re excited to VOTE YES FOR OUR UNION on January 10th and 11th to empower ourselves to negotiate a contract with Northwestern that we democratically vote to ratify, that reflects our needs and allows us to thrive.

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WHY ARE WE VOTING YES FOR OUR UNION? Once we win our union election we will be able to codify past NUGW wins such as a full five years of funding and paid medical leave into legally binding contract provisions that the Northwestern administration is bound to honor. We will continue to exercise our collective power as a union of graduate workers to keep improving our conditions in a timely manner.


Here are just a few examples of the union contract wins that other graduate worker unions have won that we could win at Northwestern as well:


  1. Guaranteed emergency medical funds  – Harvard, Columbia, and NYU

  2. Dental insurance  – University of Michigan, NYU, University of Illinois, and many others

  3. Neutral arbitrators and better grievance procedures – found in nearly every grad student union contract, with notably well-defined examples in University of Michigan’s and University of Connecticut’s contracts

  4. Stipend increases with guaranteed annual minimum raises – for example, Michigan State University won a 5% per year increase in the minimum stipend from 2019 until 2022, followed by 2.5% annual increases (this sets a baseline raise but the university can offer more at any point)

  5. Funds for immigration expenses  – for example, Harvard won the establishment of a $30K/year fund

I'm voting YES because (1)

Join your colleagues in voting YES for OUR UNION! A majority of us have repeatedly shown that we share a vision for a better Northwestern. One where all graduate workers are secure in their work. One where we do not have to choose between financial security and our studies. One where our healthcare plan covers our whole body  – eyes and teeth included! This vision is shared not only by colleagues here, but our fellow universities working with UE to create powerful, graduate-worker unions: MIT, University of Chicago, John Hopkins University, Dartmouth College, University of New Mexico, New Mexico State University, University of Iowa, and Indiana University.

I'm voting YES because

We came to Northwestern to further the pursuit of knowledge and train future generations of scholars. By unionizing we prioritize making positive changes to our working and learning environments that will facilitate Northwestern’s mission of academic freedom and excellence. As a union of graduate workers we can make our university a better place using a collective voice that is more powerful than any one of us acting alone.


On January 10th and 11th we the graduate workers of Northwestern will say YES TO OUR UNION: NUGW-UE!


In solidarity,

The Graduate Workers of the NUGW-UE Organizing Committee