Sunday, December 9

GSA recap – Nov. 7


The Graduate Students Association is the voice of graduate students on campus. The association meets for forum every three weeks and takes positions on current issues affecting graduate students. Forum meetings are at 5:30 p.m. in the Global Viewpoint Lounge in Ackerman Union.

Agenda

  • Michelle Viorato, GSA vice president of external affairs, said the University of California Graduate and Professional Council granted UCLA conditional membership until December of this year. Viorato added that she wanted to introduce GSA members to UCGPC before bringing forward the UCGPC charter for vote at the next forum. UCGPC works to set up policy statements and stances specifically for graduate students.
  • The association discussed payment issues graduate students have had with UCPath. Alec Vinson, forum representative from Math and Physical Sciences Council, said students received incorrect payments, if they were paid at all. Many delegates said they shared similar experiences. Eric Hu, GSA vice president of internal affairs, called on representatives to collect a list of grievances with their councils to be compiled at the next forum.

Officer Reports

  • Michael Skiles, GSA President, said he wanted to focus on integrating issues facing broader Westwood and UCLA with his People First initiative, an effort to make both Westwood and UCLA more pedestrian friendly. He said he hopes to get more bike lanes built and develop more pedestrian right-of-way zones.
  • Skiles also summarized housing affordability concerns among graduate students over the last few years. Skiles added that GSA should be urging the university to review its funding priorities.
  • Hu said the association hired a new finance director with regular business hours.
  • Viorato said her office had a meeting with other UC leaders to create an advocacy strategy for international students, in response to a new proposal by the Department of Homeland Security to change F1 visas to allow a specific amount of time for international students to stay in higher education.
  • Viorato added she will be working with the United Auto Workers Local 2865 to potentially decide on a graduate student representative for a future meeting with UCPath representatives.
  • Viorato also added her office is helping a Mothers of Color in Academia de UCLA representative create a systemwide committee that will prioritize child health care facilities.
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