Frequently Asked Questions

  1. What is the Graduate Assistant Health Insurance Committee?
    The Graduate Assistant Health Insurance Committee is comprised of members of the Graduate Student Organization (GSO) Executive Board, faculty and staff. The Committee, which was established in February 2016, is responsible for reviewing ways to enhance health coverage for graduate students who are funded through teaching, research or graduate assistantships. With input from graduate students across the University and advice and counsel from outside healthcare experts, the Committee is also responsible for recommending updated future coverage options that will serve the community of graduate assistants with the best coverage and benefits at the best price. See here for more information about the Committee.
  2. Why is there a review of graduate assistant health care underway?
    The University is undertaking a comprehensive review of its approach to providing health insurance to graduate assistants to ensure it is delivering the best service and benefits at the best prices.
  3. What are the goals of this review process?
    In addition to offering a health plan that delivers graduate assistants the best service and benefits at the best prices, the Committee’s review is focused on four critical areas:

    • Providing the highest level of coverage and benefits at a lower cost for graduate assistants
    • Maintaining continuity of coverage regardless of a graduate student’s assistantship status
    • Lowering premiums and ensuring that graduate assistants are able to pay for coverage on an installment plan rather than all at once
    • Continuing to provide graduate assistants with access to vision and dental coverage
  4. Will I be able to keep my existing health plan next year?
    The Committee is currently conducting and in-depth review and collecting feedback from graduate assistants across the University. No decisions have been made yet about whether there will be any healthcare changes next year. We expect to provide further details on possible updated coverage for graduate assistants in April.
  5. Isn’t this simply about saving the university money?
    No, the Graduate Assistant Health Insurance Committee is focused on enhancing health coverage for graduate assistants, including reducing the risk of gaps in coverage. The University typically undertakes a comprehensive review of its health plans every two to three years to ensure they are delivering the best service and benefits at the best prices.
  6. I cannot attend an open discussion or office hours. Who can I contact if I have questions or feedback?
    Should you have any questions, comments or suggestions, please contact Gabby Chapman at ghchapma@syr.edu.