Recent Activism

The following is an abridged timeline of PGSU’s recent activism. We’ve been organizing grad students and advocating for student rights since our founding in 2016. Check out our full timeline at the end of our guide to Princeton—Princeton 101.

Spring 2022

Summer 2021

  • We released an open letter in response to another abrupt change to the student health plan, rolling back benefits added to support students during the COVID pandemic. This change was made on very short notice and without consulting graduate workers or their families. We organized a coordinated campaign demanding that university administrators reverse this change.

Spring 2021

Spring 2020

  • Pandemic hits
  • Our petition details how Princeton’s COVID response falls short of protecting the university community. Over 700 sign
  • We released an open letter calling on Princeton to “Stop the Clock” and provide a one year funding extension to all grads. Over 1,100 sign
  • Hold a “Day of Action” where over 200 participate in a coordinated campaign demanding university admins respond to our petitions. We fill up 11 voicemail boxes and run out of people to call!
  • Active organizers with PGSU increase exponentially, work proceeds along a number of subcommittees and with closely related entities, including the anti-austerity coalition, international and immigrant student working group, cross-campus organizing, and town outreach and mutual aid
  • Big boost in social media presence, communications campaigns highlight individual grads’ testimonials and continue to shine light on university hypocrisy and shortcomings

Fall 2019

  • NLRB has not yet taken up a case to overturn the Columbia decision, instead proposes to make a rule change nullifying our status as workers
  • PGSU participates in an AFT Academics nationwide campaign to submit public comments to the NLRB opposing the rule change
  • Organize around payment transparency as we notice some weird deductions from paychecks. Princeton responds by implementing monthly “stipend deduction request” emails from Student Accounts

Spring and Summer 2019