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Abstract

This study investigated how female graduate teaching assistants (GTAs) develop social support and the influence that these relationships have on their academic, teaching, and social lives. In-depth interviews were conducted with seven female GTAs in a Communication Studies master’s degree program at a large southern university. Results revealed that participants formed closer, more personal relationships with other graduate students, specifically other GTAs, and that these relationships influenced their academic lives, including teaching. Participants formed meaningful but more formal relationships with faculty. Relationships with faculty had little influence on their teaching but influenced their graduate coursework and post-graduate plans.