ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – Some graduate students at the University of New Mexico are pushing to unionize. In December, graduate students at UNM filed for union recognition with the State Public Employees Labor Relations Board.

In response, UNM filed a petition that blocked the unionization request, which argued that graduate students were not employees and that the various positions were so different, they could not function as a collective bargaining unit.

A spokesperson for UNM, says that the university values these students and that many of them are paid under various assistantship titles that provide financial support to continue their studies – which they say does not move them to the status of a regular employee, according to state law. The state labor board will soon hear these arguments, but there is no set date yet.