TGSA Annual General Meeting, Oct 29, 2014

TGSA’s 2014-2015 Fall AGM (Annual General Meeting) has been scheduled for October 29, 2014, 6-8pm in Bagnani Hall. All graduate students are encouraged to attend and engage in productive conversation about our plans and your thoughts for the 2014-2015 academic year.

See here for the 2014-2015 Fall AGM agenda.

See here for 2014-2015 Fiscal Year Budget.

Continue reading for further information on the candidates up for election, as well as the referendum questions.


The daily operations of the TGSA is governed by its by-laws. All deviations in operations away from these by-laws require approval by our membership (you). This year, we have four (4) major changes that we would like to bring to your attention.

Question 1:

The Senator position on the board of GSA has taken on additional responsibilities this year, including participation in meetings that are key to the functioning of the association (see here for full case). The executive strongly endorses that this post be transitioned from a Board of Director assignment to that of an Executive Officer, with the accompanying change in honorarium to $1000/yr (standard of all TGSA Executives), effective from the 2014-2015 academic year.

Q1a. Do you support retroactively amending Articles 9 and 10, and Sections 5 and 6, of the GSA by-laws to make the TGSA Senator position an Executive position from 2014/2015 Academic Year onwards?

 Question 2:

The GSA is now registered as a not-for-profit incorporated association. This means that we require both a formal Mission Statement and Objectives. Presently, we have only formal Objectives (represented as Article 2 in the current bylaw). We, therefore, require a formal mission statement.

Q2a. Do you support an amendment of Article 2 of the bylaw to create Articles 2A and 2B giving our Objectives and Mission Statement, respectively? 

Q2b. Do you support the following as our new Mission Statement?

“To foster, support and contribute to the intellectual growth and cultural development of graduate students by advocating for their unique needs and concerns while building a sense of community amongst them and a positive relationship with the Trent family and the community at large.”

 Question 3:

In the past, the TGSA has sponsored the cost of graduate students’ mandatory thesis microfiching costs for Library and Achives Canada thesis copies. In 2013, mandatory microfiching was eliminated when Library and Achieves Canada switched to a computerized storage system. This year, the TGSA proposes to reallocate the funds previously used for microfiching towards a thesis-binding rebate for all graduate students.

Q3a: Do you support that the TGSA provide a rebate of $30 per graduate student to subsidize mandatory thesis binding costs, effective retroactively to September 1st, 2014?

Question 4:

The Ontario Graduate Students’ Alliance (OGSA) strives to work collaboratively, informed by the voices of graduate students residing in Ontario, to advocate for policy and system change to support the continued improvement of the graduate student experience in the Province of Ontario. It represents over 18,000 graduate students at its seven member universities: University of Waterloo, Mcmaster University, Wilfrid Laurier University, Trent University, University of Ontario Institute of Technology, University of Guelph, Athabasca University and Lakehead University.

For more information on OGSA’s current projects, as well as details on its Mission, Vision, and Values please refer to their Annual Report for 2013-2014.

In 2013-2014, the Trent GSA was granted complimentary membership in OGSA for a trial period while donations from partner universities funded the efforts of this Not-for-Profit. However, OGSA wishes to hire professional staff to grow its membership and lobby government. For this, they are in discussions with all universities about fee contributions for continued membership. Documentation of budget and fee use is available here: Membership Policy and REVISED-Budget & Fee Statement.

They are requesting a base fee of $1000 from each member university and the implementation of a scalable levy amount per student.

Note: Even if we immediately terminate our relationship with the OGSA, we may still owe them fees for the current year based on membership policy.

 Q4a: Do you support the current TGSA levy budget allocation of $1400 in support of the TGSA’s membership in OGSA for 2014-2015?

Q4b: Do you support the TGSAs continued membership in OGSA for subsequent years through a $1000 base fee and a per student yearly levy fee of $2.00, effective Fall 2015?

These referendum questions will be discussed in further detail at the Fall AGM on Wednesday. Online polls will open for voting immediately following the AGM.


Vice President, Student Affairs:
Jamie Lynch is a first year MA student in Trent University’s Department of Anthropology.  She studies faunal remains from Late Pleistocene archaeological sites in Europe.  During her undergraduate studies, Jamie was actively involved in student affairs.  As the Associated Anthropology Student’s Undergraduate Liaison at San Diego State University, she organized academic seminars, trips to museums, and fundraising events.  She was also the Hospitality Chair for the local archaeological society.  Jamie’s current volunteer engagement with Trent University has been as a Symons Seminar Series Abstract Selector and first year Graduate Student Representative for the Anthropology Graduate Department.  She would like to contribute to graduate student engagement at Trent University by planning fun and memorable events.  Jamie is also passionate about health and well-being and would love the opportunity to be a liaison between Trent University’s wellness resources and Trent’s graduate student body.

Program Representative, English Literature (Public Texts, M.A.):
Kate Sykes, an M.A. candidate in the English Literature (Public Texts) program, would be an excellent representative for her program on the Board of Directors. She has been involved in a number of student groups in the past and has an interest in effecting positive change within her new graduate student community.

Program Representative, Anthropology (M.A.):
Peter Hammersley has been actively involved with the 2014-2015 TGSA team since May 2014 as a volunteer in the capacity of interim program representative for Athropology.

Program Representative, Materials Science (Ph.D.):
Athira Mohanan has been actively involved with the 2014-2015 TGSA team since May 2014 as a volunteer in the capacity of interim program representative for Materials Science. Athira has expressed interest in continuing on formally in this position for the rest of the academic year.

Online polls will open for voting immediately following the AGM.