Graduate teaching assistants at Illinois State University voted 160-36 in favor of certifying Service Employees International Union Local 73 as their bargaining representative. SEIU Local 73 will represent all TAs at ISU, nearly 500 in all. The ISU TAs are the latest in a string of Illinois graduate students to unionize, following graduate assistants at the University of Illinois campuses in Urbana-Champaign, Springfield, and Chicago.
Georgetown University graduate students voted 555-108 to unionize. The vote means that nearly 1,100 graduate student assistants will be represented by the American Federation of Teachers. The American Arbitration Association conducted the election outside the jurisdiction of the NLRB.
Brown University graduate student employees voted 576-294 in favor of unionizing. The union’s name will be Stand Up for Graduate Student Employees and will be affiliated with the American Federation of Teachers. The election was conducted by the American Arbitration Association instead of the NLRB. In all, the union will represent approximately 900 doctoral and master’s degree students who work as teaching assistants, research assistants, or proctors.
University of California researches voted in favor of being represented by Academic Researchers United, which is affiliated with United Auto Workers Local 5810. About two-thirds of workers who cast a ballot voted in favor of unionization. Academic Researchers United will represent approximately 5,000 researchers who are not faculty members or postdoctoral fellows throughout the university system.
Students at Grinnell College in Grinnell, Iowa, voted 274-54 to expand a union of student dining workers to all student workers. The union is now the first campus-wide undergraduate student union at a private college or university. The Union of Grinnell Student Dining Workers will represent more than 700 student workers, but an appeal by the college could reach the NLRB and dictate the right of students to organize nationwide. The college opposed the election, stating that it would “undermine the College’s core educational mission and culture,” but union organizers are trying to meet with the college president to reach a framework agreement to prevent an appeal.
The United Soccer League, a second-tier professional league, recognized its players’ union on November 27. The United Soccer League Players Union is made up of about 650 players from 36 teams across the country. No date has been set for contract negotiations to begin.