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Guidance to Graduate Assistants


All graduate assistantships will continue during the coronavirus crisis. GAs will receive stipends and benefits as planned. Graduate assistants should consult with their supervisors about how their duties and responsibilities will be modified.

  • Teaching assistants should move to an on-line format for classes, discussion sections, and office hours, and should use the week of March 23 to prepare for this transition. Please request guidance from your faculty supervisor. TLTC and DIT can provide assistance and ensure you have the right hardware, software, and network connection for effective on-line instruction.  For help, see the keepteaching, and TLTC websites or email Teaching assistants for laboratory and studio courses should consult with their faculty supervisor on whether and how they can transition activities to an on-line environment.
  • Research assistants should contact their supervisor. Severe research restrictions are in effect from March 25 to at least April 10. Research supervisors have been asked to stop on-campus work and move research assistants to remote work. Research assistants and their faculty advisors should take steps immediately to place research activities in a state where they can be restarted without loss of progress when restrictions are lifted.
  • Administrative assistants should contact their supervisor. Supervisors have been asked to maximize the use of telework for graduate assistants.

If you are feeling unwell, let your supervisor know and follow CDC guidance. Consult for updates on the University's response and other resources.Policies on graduate assistantships can be found here. Although graduate assistants do not accrue paid annual, personal, or sick leave, there are provisions for absence due to illness and time-away from duty. Absence due to illness may include quarantine or self-isolation, if duties cannot be performed remotely. Time-away from duty may be used for any purpose, including caring for someone who is ill or if a child’s school or day care is closed. Please notify your supervisor if you will be absent due to illness or if you wish to request time-away from duty.Graduate assistants who are unable to perform their duties, either in person or via telework, because of circumstances resulting from COVID-19 illness, efforts to prevent the spread of COVID-19, or because they have been asked to leave the premises, will be granted an excused absence (beyond that allowed by policy) without any loss of pay.

Steve Fetter
Associate Provost and Dean, The Graduate School
University of Maryland, College Park