Columbia comments on the Union’s acceptance on April 2, 2021 of the University’s mediation offer:

We have always believed that a meaningful agreement can be struck that advances the interests of our graduate workers and strengthens the University both academically and as an employer. The GWC-UAW’s acceptance of our offer to pause the strike immediately and enter mediation brings us an important step closer to that outcome.


Mediation is a private, voluntary process where a neutral third person, a mediator, helps the parties try to resolve a dispute and facilitate reaching an agreement. The University's mediation with the GWC-UAW has begun using mediator Andrea Cancer from the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Services. The first mediation session was held on Thursday, April 8. There are additional sessions scheduled for Sunday, April 11; Monday, April 12; Thursday, April 15; and Friday, April 16.

Our Approach

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Productive negotiations are characterized by transparency and by both parties’ good-faith commitment to the time consuming and complicated work required to reach an initial collective bargaining agreement.

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Bargaining Committees

The University’s respective bargaining committees stand ready to engage the process in this manner and to reach agreement as expeditiously as possible.

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Our principal goal is to ensure that every Columbia doctoral student can achieve the highest levels of intellectual accomplishment and personal fulfillment.

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Framework Agreement

The Framework Agreement for bargaining makes clear that academic judgments in service of our educational and research mission shall remain the prerogative of the University.

Bargaining Sessions Prior to Mediation

April 1, 2021

The University presented its cost analysis of the Union’s revised proposals. The University suggested mediation.

March 30, 2021

The University presented a revised proposal on Health Benefits. The Union presented a package of revised proposals, including on Health Benefits, Fee Waivers, and Compensation.

March 25, 2021

The Union caucused for the duration of the scheduled session. The parties agreed to meet again on March 30, 2021.

March 23, 2021

The University presented enhancements to the EOAA appeals process to address the Union’s request for an independent, third-party review of EOAA determinations.

March 18, 2021

The University and the Union continued negotiations.

March 16, 2021

The University and the Union continued negotiations.