Tuition grants for about 20,000 needy graduate students at California State University are rescued - for now - thanks to a pair of panicked students in San Francisco who gathered thousands of signatures online and mobilized an army of support.
"I'm really astonished," said Hayley Leventhal, a San Francisco State University graduate student who helped create the petition last week after learning her financial aid was in jeopardy. "I am overwhelmed and extremely moved by the support and effort I've seen in the past week by graduate students and their allies."
On Wednesday, Chancellor Charles Reed and CSU's 23 campus presidents agreed not to divert $90 million from the tuition grants that help about half of CSU's 40,000 or so graduate students pay for school.
CSU spokesman Mike Uhlenkamp said the executives made the decision just before a contingent of students delivered the petition, signed by 2,770 people.