Fostering A Remote Cohort Community of Graduate Student Peers During The COVID-19 Pandemic


  • Harrison Campbell Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary
  • Helen Pethrick University of Calgary
  • Brian Christopher Tidbury Gilbert University of Calgary
  • Muhammad Adil Arshad University of Calgary
  • Kristal Louise Turner University of Calgary


Within this article, the authors describe a “cohort community” that was born through a desire to create a space for graduate students at both the MA and PhD level to thrive in their respective programs. As global circumstances closed campuses, the cohort community was forced to shift into digital spaces, bringing with it new opportunities for growth and connection. Herein, each author reflects on these opportunities as well as the vulnerability and trust called for in the graduate student experience in general and during times of crisis. This community fostered active feedback between graduate students, networking with other budding scholars, comradery in learning environments, support between students going through graduate school together, and accountability of progression towards program milestones. Through the reflections of the authors, we discuss the facets of the community that gave it strength and present a series of recommendations regarding the future of digital graduate student cohort communities and the possibilities of other such communities on different campuses.

Keywords: Community, Collaboration, Cohorts, Graduate education, Duoethnography, COVID-19






Position Paper/Essai