As a result of institutional neglect and under preparation, graduate students threaded their way through the COVID-19 pandemic and racial injustices across the U.S. with minimal to no support and resources. In this manuscript, we discuss the oversights in institutional response, and management of these crises, explicating the difficulties that ensued from the academy’s failure to anticipate, critically consider, and meet the nuanced needs of graduate students before and during the COVID-19 crisis. We also highlight intersectionality as a valuable framework that enables us to identify, analyze, and address the range of concerns of graduate students. Lastly, we posit three recommendations that institutional leaders can consider as they develop critical encompassing crisis management plans that center graduate students and their unique needs, while striving to create equitable educational environments for them. Specifically, we urge higher education stakeholders to: engage intersectionality in institutional decision-making, empower graduate students through collaboration, and apply lessons learned from both current and past crises.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License.