Leonard Cassuto

American Higher Education Learning Cohort Convener
Inaugural GRADitude Award for Advancing Graduate Professional Development Recipient

Leonard Cassuto is a professor of English at Fordham University and a columnist on graduate education for The Chronicle of Higher Education. He is the author or editor of 10 books on subjects ranging from crime fiction to sports. His last two books center on the state of American graduate education: The Graduate School Mess (2015) and The New PhD: How to Build a Better Graduate Education (with Robert Weisbuch; 2021). His next book, Academic Writing as if Readers Matter, will be published by Princeton University Press in September, 2024.

"I've been concerned with graduate education and graduate student professional development for more than a decade, and have seen it tried at many campuses nationwide. Princeton is doing it right. I'm impressed with what I see here, and grateful to do my part to help. GradFUTURES is a terrific program, the state of the art.

I began teaching the co-curricular workshop, "American Higher Education: History and Challenges" in 2017. It was among the first "professional development learning cohort" workshop to be offered at Princeton, and was attended by faculty and administrators as well as students. The course was deeply rewarding, not least because of how it contributed to the foundation of what would become GradFUTURES.

I'm particularly struck by the suite of Fellowships offered by GradFUTURES. The fellowships are a brilliant idea to expose graduate students to different kinds of workplaces, and to connect them with a range of mentors within and beyond the academy."