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Teaching & Graduate Assistants

Rutgers Teaching Assistants and Graduate Assistants (TAs/GAs) wear two hats: graduate student and faculty member. As university employees, the 1,800-plus TAs-GAs devote an average of 15 hours per week to teaching and research, and serve either a 12-month calendar year appointment or a 10-month academic year appointment. Graduate employees embody our union's philosophy: Faculty's teaching conditions are our students' learning conditions.

TAs/GAs joined Rutgers AAUP-AFT in 1972, combining their efforts with the full-time faculty. This unity has meant decades of advocacy on issues facing graduate employees, such as workload protections, fair compensation, and employment support  that has good working conditions in order to learn on-the-job and protect our time so we can also make good progress towards earning our degrees.

The TA-GA Steering Committee meets monthly during the semester (and more often when a specific campaign is underway) to work together to articulate TA and GA issues. We have a strong working relationship with the Graduate Student Association (GSA), which deals with academic issues for all graduate students under the authority of the Graduate School. TA-GAs also select members to serve on the Executive Council of the AAUP-AFT. The TA-GA Steering Committee establishes its meeting schedule each semester based on the needs of the majority who attend. We provide food at meetings based on the number of people who RSVP. We have support provided by union staff members and officers.

Join the union and become part of the TA-GA Steering Committee. All TA and GA employees automatically  pay a representation fee per New Jersey State labor law when they begin employment at Rutgers. We members invite all our colleagues to join the union, switching from merely paying the fee for representation to being full members with voice and vote in the union. The TA-GA dues rate is 0.60% of salary.

Download the membership form here

View the TA-GA dues chart

Graduate students may also work as Part-Time Lecturers (PTLs).

Read read more on PTL working conditions here.


Dilara Demir

Dilara Demir, RU graduate student and TA, was given an award for her activism on behalf all graduate students, including union activism and other issues of concern to the graduate student body. The award was presented on May 7, 2015. Standing with Dilara are Patrick Nowlan, Executive Director of Rutgers AAUP-AFT, and Lisa Klein, President of Rutgers AAUP-AFT.


Grad Student Activists



Reclaim Rutgers: Graduate Student activists carrying "Fair Contracts Now" signs at a contract action rally in Fall 2014





Fall TA Orientation: New TAs and GAs join the union!

Graduate Student union activist, Binxing Yu, is the person holding the AAUP-AFT membership brochure and wearing the union shirt.

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