Meeting Minutes - 07 December 2009

* Meeting convened in the Newcomb Hall Board Room at 6 pm

Guest Speaker

Wendy Perry

    • : Director, Graduate Student & Postdoctoral Professional Development Programs


      • * Started program 4 years ago to address the diverse issues for grdaute students;
      • * Office is located in Varsity Hall;
      • * Her job has evolved to now spend about 50% of her time on graduate students & 50% on post-doctoral professionals;
      • * She is trying to get more resources since has such a diverse set of issues to deal with between the grads and post-docs;
      • * As it is, it can take 2 - 3weeks to schedule a one on one meeting with her so she desperately needs more support and resources to help her with time and accessibility;
      • * There are so many competing worthy causes and as a grad council, she would like us to be more vocal in helping her secure additional resources and support to better address our needs;
      • * If we can work with some of the other professional schools (who often do sign up for her programs), we can secure better facilities and resources for the valuable programs she puts on (examples include navigating the job market and writing the dissertation);
      • * It's hard to compete nationally with other peer institutions who have 8 - 10 people doing the same work that she alone does;
      • * As a grad council, we can also write a letter to Roseanne Ford (her boss) in support of securing additional resources and man-power;
      • * In addition to the letter, benchmarking data that she has and we've come up with to a certain extent would be helpful as adding support;
      • * Given the economic climate, she's currently advocating for a 2 year post-doc position to be created as well as requesting money to develop a more in-depth website with helpful resources;
      • * She would like to be able to advise better for those graduate students looking for positions beyond academia, but that is very time consuming to research since each discipline is so different and she has been unable to pool the materials she would like to as of this time;
    • * A question was asked regarding getting faculty from individual departments involved to help with information, but she replied that again, it's a time issue because her office would have to do alot of the solicitation and legwork for coordination and there just isn't time with such a limited staff.

Reports and Old Business

Officers / Chairs / Special RepresentativesBudget Committee

        • * Doing fine for right now and are on target. Expect more Academic events in the spring and the Huskey Exposition in addition to social events

Social Committee

  • * Come out for the Lighting of the Lawn at Pavillion II with Dean Woo

Life Commitee

    • * Surveys: We need increased participation so please be sure to have sent out the electronic surveys to your department list-servs (some departments have participation and others do not for a total of only 168 responses)
    • * Julie McClue is meeting with Dean Fatton on Wednesday to point us in the right direction about who we want to talk to about issues (such as maternity leave, etc.).
    • * Question: How many of your teachers are being paid as instructors? How many have to pay out of pocket for registration and fees and are getting paid to teach?
    • * Jason answered that 15 - 20 have responded so far who fall into that category. Dean Fatton is going to work on permanently solving this issues (he's had to withdraw the previous statement that he would be able to fund these fees for the these students in the spring)
    • * Space Issues: For new space, science people probably would not go due to distance from their work areas, but other departments definitely do want graduate space. There are discussions in the work for securing space in the New South Lawn project. Dean Laushway is working with Aramark to get space with after hours access, couches, lockerst, etc. that would hopefully be ready in the near future. In addition, in the Library, Wittenberg wants to give gradaute students a study area near the MacGregor room on the 2nd floor.


  • Safety & Sexual Harrassment: talked with the Director, Claire Kaplan, of the Women's Center; most responses find that issues become more murky with students when teachers or when working with advisors. Apparentyl resources are in place but not very available or known by students at the moment. Might want to send out surveys again to address the domestic partners issues (because of tendency to think of what goes on on grounds versus off grounds . . . does there need to be a separate address?)

Research Committee

  • * Nothing new for now

Student Council Rep

    • * There are now Zip Cars available for students to use. More convenient for 1st years who can't have cars on grounds; participnts over 23 can use service (once they sign up) anywhere in the U.S.
    • * Theh shuttle service to airports went really well for Thanksgiving so they are going to try to do it again at spring break (and will branch to Dulles pending success)
    • * Question regarding the elimination of the Spanish Minor: It is temporarily suspended for 1 to 2 years with possible permanent suspensions because there is not enough money


      • * Concerns - Doing away with this and what/who it will ultimately hurt?
      • * Spanish Department position is that minors are not really important because employers do not look at them
      • * We should have an official position as Gradaute Council someone proposes
      • * Wouldn't priority enrollment solve this issue of making sure there are enough classes to complete requirements? - some think they already have this but some minors have said they have troulbe getting in to the classes they need
      • * Possible remedy - Start teaching large intro classes in large lecture halls - although this sounds awful
    • * If you have suggestions, send them to Dave Hondula or Matt Rannals or the Director of the Spanish Department

Honor Commmittee

    • * Alexander and Ed are working on things that might affect our role as instructors and reporters of violations
    • * Sense now that the process is too secretive - 1. Towards the general public (what consists actual honor offense); 2. Towards participants in process (they don't say why they dismiss cases); 3. that the demand in case (only accused can talk about case); There are 11 major problems created by these issues (cases that are similar are not settled similarly)
    • * Alexander is asking us to fill out a survey dealing with some of these issues (can turn in to ED)
  • * What are the best things to do re: confidentiality. Notion of petition drive to get signatures in support of reform. Ideas include committee members to make a public note, appeals process to sugdent body as a whole. Article is available from him that details everything. Forward messages re: online survey to departments

New Business

Funding Requests

      • * Lighting of the Lawn: Requested $500, Recommended at $100 since undergrads particpated in recpetion, Approved at $100
      • * Classics Graduate Student Colloquium - Requested $800, Recommended $500 since it is not until March and they can come back for more once they hear of other outside funding, Approved at $500
      • * Italian Master's Thesis Presentation - Requested $200, Recommended not to fund because they are mainly requested resources for food, Approved to not fund
      • * Lighting of the Law: LED Lights - This became a non-issue
      • * GSASC "Welcome Back" Happy Hour - Requested $400, Approved at $400
      • * Beer Tasting - Recommended to discuss at the general council meeting, Luke got his party manager certificate and is asking for $200 (it would be held in either late January or February on a Friday at his place)


        • * Concerns: How much do we want to be abel to say this is a GSASC supported event?
        • * Proposal to Dean Laushway that we should get approval 1st
        • * The issue of liability looms large and remains
        • * Another option would be just to have Beer Run do it and all go there
      • * Luke decided to just do it on is own

Meeting adjourned.