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    2020 Press Releases

    Andrew G. Campbell of Brown University to Serve as Chair of CGS Board (12/9/2020)

    The Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) Board of Directors has announced its officers for the 2021 term. CGS is governed by an 11-member Board of Directors drawn from member institutions. Board members serve set terms.


    CGS Recognizes 2020 Congressional Champion Award Recipients, Rep. Annie Kuster and Rep. Rodney Davis (12/2/2020)

    Today, the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) recognized Representative Annie Kuster (NH-02) and Representative Rodney Davis (IL-13) with their inaugural Congressional Champion Award during CGS’s 60th Anniversary Annual Meeting, held virtually December 2-4. Granted to two bipartisan members of Congress, the award acknowledges the remarkable contributions each has made toward advancing graduate education in the federal arena. “We are extremely grateful for Congressman Davis’ and Congresswoman Kuster’s ongoing support for graduate students,” said Suzanne T. Ortega, CGS president. “Each demonstrates a commitment to increasing access to graduate education, which benefits individuals from communities across the country and ensures we have a workforce armed with the knowledge and skills to ignite innovation and find solutions to today’s challenges.”


    Minority Graduate Students Remain Substantially Underrepresented in Graduate Education, Particularly in STEM Fields (10/15/2020)

    Graduate degree holders representing diverse backgrounds will play a key role in driving innovation and discovery in the U.S. workforce, and new data from the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) on graduate enrollments and degrees provide a revealing snapshot of the country's progress in meeting these demands. According to a CGS report released today, graduate applications were flat (-0.6%) and first-time graduate enrollment (2.5%) increased overall for the Fall 2019 semester. While graduate schools reported  overall increases in the first-time enrollment of minority students between Fall 2018 and Fall 2019 (Latinx +5.7%, Black/African American +5.5%, Asian +5.3%, and American Indian/Alaska Native +3.5%), students from these demographic groups remain substantially underrepresented as percentage shares of the graduate student population, particularly in STEM fields. These data are part of the latest CGS/GRE Graduate Enrollment & Degrees: 2009-2019 report.


    CGS Expands Research & Partnership Network to Support PhD Career Pathways (8/19/2020)

    The Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) has announced a new phase in its efforts to understand and support diverse PhD career pathways. A significant grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF #2000750) will allow CGS to examine factors likely to impact retention and persistence in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) careers, particularly for underrepresented students.  Meanwhile, a previously-announced grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation will seek to uncover both challenges and decision-making factors at points of career transition for Humanities PhDs.


    CGS Takes Action to Protect Pathways to Graduate Schools for Underrepresented Graduate Students during COVID-19 (8/06/2020)

    The Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) announced a new project to examine the obstacles underrepresented students (URM) have faced in their matriculation, persistence, and completion of STEM graduate programs in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. With funding from the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Rapid Response Research (RAPID) program, CGS will collaborate with the Council for Opportunity in Education (COE) and the Council of Historically Black Graduate Schools (CHBGS) to understand challenges currently faced by URM and first-generation students and provide just-in-time information that will help support their success.



    CGS Applauds SCOTUS Decision to Uphold DACA (6/19/2020)

    On June 18, in a 5 to 4 decision, the Supreme Court deemed the Trump Administration’s move to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program unlawful. CGS applauds the high court’s ruling to uphold DACA, which will provide immediate relief for the over 650,000 individuals who have DACA status (“Dreamers”). 


    CGS Calls for Action to End Racism and Injustice (6/03/2020)

    Recent days and weeks have brought us heart-wrenching reminders of race-based inequality and injustice. In addition to COVID-19’s disproportionate impact on students of color and their families, we have witnessed appalling acts of racism and violence toward African Americans—most recently George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and Tony McDade—acts that cause further distress and fear among communities already suffering. The CGS Board of Directors condemns both the deeply embedded and structural forms of racism and injustice we see around us as well as their most immediate manifestations. We also stand in solidarity with people of color in our community as they confront painful examples of violence and injustice.


    CGS Statement on Graduate Admissions during the COVID-19 Pandemic (5/08/2020)

    In mid-April, the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) received a letter from student body presidents and leaders at 157 universities requesting formal acknowledgment of the “unprecedented challenges undergraduates have faced during the COVID-19 pandemic” and recognition of a set of principles regarding admissions policies. In response, CGS released the following statement on graduate admissions during the COVID-19 pandemic.


    CGS and PERVADE to Convene Thought Leaders on Ethical Issues in Big Data Research (2/25/2020)

    Today the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) announced a partnership with the University of Maryland’s PERVADE: Pervasive Data Ethics to identify ways to enhance and influence the training graduate students receive when using big data methods in their research. The project, which will convene thought leaders from the big data ethics community and graduate deans from research-intensive institutions, has received funding support from the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services Office of Research Integrity (ORI) and Elsevier.


    International Graduate Application and Enrollment Rates Increase at U.S. Institutions After Two Consecutive Years of Decline (2/12/2020)

    The Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) has published new data showing that international graduate application and first-time enrollment rates have increased at U.S. universities for the first time since Fall 2016. For Fall 2019, the final application counts from prospective international students increased by 3%, and the first-time enrollment of international graduate students increased by 4%. The proportion of first-time international graduate enrollment in master’s and certificate programs (75%) vs. doctoral programs (25%) has remained roughly the same.




    CGS is the leading source of information, data analysis, and trends in graduate education. Our benchmarking data help member institutions to assess performance in key areas, make informed decisions, and develop plans that are suited to their goals.
    CGS Best Practice initiatives address common challenges in graduate education by supporting institutional innovations and sharing effective practices with the graduate community. Our programs have provided millions of dollars of support for improvement and innovation projects at member institutions.
    As the national voice for graduate education, CGS serves as a resource on issues regarding graduate education, research, and scholarship. CGS collaborates with other national stakeholders to advance the graduate education community in the policy and advocacy arenas.  
    CGS is an authority on global trends in graduate education and a leader in the international graduate community. Our resources and meetings on global issues help members internationalize their campuses, develop sustainable collaborations, and prepare their students for a global future.