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University of Chicago graduate students vote to unionize

October 20, 2017

CHICAGO (AP) — University of Chicago graduate students, who both teach and do research in earning advanced degrees, have voted to unionize.

The National Labor Relations Board reports in balloting that took place Tuesday and Wednesday there were 1,103 votes for the union and 479 against. There were 149 challenged ballots.

Graduate Students United, which is affiliated with the Illinois Federation of Teachers and the American Association of University Professors, is to represent the students.

Daniela Palmer is pursuing her doctorate in evolutionary biology. She says the research and teaching graduate students do is essential to the functioning of the university and students recognize that.

Spokeswoman Marielle Sainvilus says the university also recognizes the importance of its graduate students. However, the school has concerns over what impact their unionization would have on its mission.

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