Graduate Education at Brown

Brown University has an ongoing commitment to strengthening support for and engagement with our more than 2,200 graduate students on campus. Graduate education has been central to Brown’s mission for more than a century, and we believe that the teaching and research our students undertake are integral to a graduate education.

As graduate students explore whether to unionize, our foremost priority is to ensure that students are empowered with the information they need to make the decision they feel is right for them, and that the full graduate student body participates in making an informed decision that will affect all graduate students. We continue to encourage an informed, balanced discussion with and among graduate students. We believe firmly that a determination regarding unionization is a decision that is ultimately theirs to make.


Student Studying in Library

With graduate degrees awarded by Brown since 1888, graduate education has been central to the University’s mission for well over a century. As students explore unionization, it’s important to state what we value at Brown: Our deep history and promising future for graduate education at Brown; our graduate students and their individual contributions; and an open and informed discussion on unionization.


This page outlines the basics on collective bargaining and the election process, organized through the National Labor Relations Board, by which eligible bargaining units can choose to be represented by a union.

Quiet Green

These FAQs explore common questions about the conversations taking place on the Brown campus and across the country about the roles that graduate students play in teaching and research at private universities, as well as the potential impact and implications of unionization.


As graduate students explore unionization, this page includes news and updates from the University, including correspondence to the community from Brown’s senior leaders.

Resources for the Community

The resources cataloged here include facts about graduate education at Brown, links to relevant NLRB cases and historical news releases from the University.