PHILADELPHIA, PA – The Temple University Graduate Students Association (TUGSA) has gone on strike, and undergraduates who support them have organized a walk-out from class and campus work on February 15. The graduate students are demanding base pay of $32,800, dependent healthcare, longer parental and bereavement leave and improved working conditions. The university administration has already revoked the striking grad students’ tuition remission and health insurance coverage in retaliation for striking.
An undergrads’ press release said in response to organizing, “university administration responded with an intimidating email directed to all students, even threatening students’ academic progress for participation.”
The undergrads tell Unicorn Riot that while tuition was raised 3.9% this year, only 62 cents of every dollar are spent on instruction. A notice from the undergrad organizers reads:
“Forcing administration to give into TUGSA’s demands will take escalation involving students and workers across campus. In walking out from classes, undergraduate students show the way forward towards more and more workers in the Temple community taking escalating collective action.”— Press release from undergrad students at Temple supporting striking graduate students