February 2016


SOGS Update, the official monthly electronic newsletter from SOGS, keeps you up to date on issues and events affecting graduate students at The University of Western Ontario. If you are looking for previous issues of SOGS Update please contact the office.

For updates on events, issues and discussion relevant to graduate students and Western between editions of the newsletter, consider the following options:

Do you have a news item or announcement you would like to have included in the next SOGS Update? Email external@sogs.ca for more information.

In this month’s Update


Travel and ChildCare Subsidies

Congratulations to the Fall 2015 Travel and ChildCare Subsidy winners! A total of $24,500.00 was awarded to Travel Subsidy applicants, and $3,000.00 to ChildCare applicants. A total of $56,705.32 subsidies has been awarded this fiscal year.

Travel & ChildCare Deadline for the current Winter 2016 term is April 29, 2016. Applications are available in the SOGS office and online http://sogs.ca/index.php/member-services/financial-support/

OSOTF & OOP Bursaries Closed for the Term

OSOTF & OOP Bursaries’ portal has now closed for this term. SOGS requires Financial Aid to assess appicants’ financial need, therefore the process can take up to six weeks. Awards will be announced by March 15. Your patience is appreciated. Good Luck to all the applicants!

Upcoming Referendum and Senate/Board Elections

Please VOTE on Feb. 8th and 9th in the Ancillary Fee Referendum and Elections for Senate and the Board of Governors Representatives

When: 8:00am on Feb. 8th to 8:00pm on Feb. 9th.
Where: Online voting!
What: There will be two votes taking place during this time

  1. A referendum regarding the introduction of a new ancillary fee for all students. “Do you agree to the creation of a student ancillary fee in the amount of $4.89 that supports entrepreneurship at Western University?”
  2. Graduate student representatives to the University Senate and Board of Governors. Candidate statements are available online: Senate and Board of Governors

SOGS Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the Society of Graduate Students will be held on Thursday, February 11th at 6pm in UCC 41. The meeting’s agenda and the proposed budget has been distributed via email, along with a proxy form. These documents are also available online:

The AGM is an opportunity for the wider graduate student body to contribute their voice to key proposals, such as the 2016-2017 budget and proposed constitutional amendments. It is also an opportunity for information sharing and accountability measures, as reports from Executives, Commissioners, and Committee Chairs are shared. Motions to be discussed include:
  • Approving the proposed budget
  • Limiting the number of terms a person may serve as president
  • Allowing students on leaves of absence to be associate members within the Society

Critical updates about initiatives on campus will also be discussed, such as the push to get more mental health support for graduate students.

If you are unable to attend, it is strongly encouraged that you complete a proxy form to allow another member of the Society to vote on your behalf.

If you have any questions about the AGM, please stop the office (UCC 260), email our reception staff (sogsrecp@uwo.ca), or email the Executive (executive@sogs.ca).

Clara Hughes: Free Event and SOGS Contest Winners


SOGS hosted a social media contest to give away three tickets to have lunch with Clara Hughes on Tuesday, February 9. Congratulations to our winners:

  • Katherine Craig
  • Annie Ho
  • Joelle Nagle

Clara Hughes’ talk at Western event is co-sponsored by Western Student Services, SOGS, the USC, and the Campus Bookstore. Western Student Services is giving away four more tickets to Western students, so you still have the opportunity to meet Clara!

Be sure to follow WSS on Twitter (https://twitter.com/westernuWSS) and join the Event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1030162457039963/

The event is FREE to all students, though you must register for her presentation and Book Signing: http://studentexperience.uwo.ca/slide_content/ClaraHughes.html

Immigration Seminar with Elizabeth Long

As part of its mandate to advocate on behalf of international graduate students, IGSIC is aiming to host a number of workshops during Reading Week. As of right now, we have one event confirmed. To keep informed about our progress, please join the https://www.facebook.com/groups/Western.SOGS.IGSIC/ or email VP Student Services (services@sogs.ca) for more information.

On February 19, Elizabeth Long, an Immigration lawyer based in Toronto, will be returning to Western to present on the updated Canadian Immigration Law. Some of the issues Elizabeth discussed in her previous seminar included permanent residence and the Express Entry system (link to videos). Since the law has changed, we strongly encourage graduate international students to attend.

Register for the event here:

Thesis Writers’ Program

The Thesis Writers’ Program is a pilot project dedicated to providing a comfortable and distraction-free space conducive for graduate student thesis writing sponsored by SGPS, SOGS, and the Writing Centre. Inspired by the feedback received from graduate students during the initial launch of the Thesis Writers’ Retreat in 2015, this program offers graduate students a chance to step away from the obligations and distractions of everyday life so that they can focus exclusively on dissertation writing for three hour blocks each week.

Along with the space and outlets for laptops, each session will provide coffee, tea, and fruit. These sessions will also be informally facilitated by graduate student volunteers. In order to ensure the future of this program, we encourage graduate students to contact services@sogs.ca to find out how to get involved.

Location: The Chu Centre in the International and Graduate Affairs Building

  • March 1; 1-4pm
  • March 11; 9am-12pm
  • March 14; 1-4pm
  • March 25; 9am-12pm
  • March 31; 9am-12pm

SGPS will send out an email when registration on the Writing Support Centre goes live.

Now accepting submissions for the 2016 Robert Macmillan Graduate Research in Education Symposium

2016MacmillanGRiESThe Robert Macmillan Graduate Research in Education Symposium is an excellent opportunity to share your education related research, get feedback, and learn about research being done by other graduate students. This friendly environment is also a great place to practice for other conferences. Please consider participating.

The theme for this year’s conference is Challenges in Education: Local and Global Perspectives. The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization’s 2014 report, UNESCO Education Strategy, 2014-2021, tells us that the educational attainment of the world’s population is higher than ever before “and the promise of universal basic education for all has come closer to realization” (p. 9). Despite these gains, however, “a number of challenges remain in areas concerning quality, equity and learning outcomes” (UNESCO, 2014, p. 9). We welcome submissions for paper presentations, posters, and creative products that consider this theme from a variety of perspectives, local to global including, but not limited to: social justice, LGBT2Q, new technologies, applied linguistics, leadership, policy, Indigenous pedagogies, and more.

You are welcome to submit papers from any stage of research; all graduate students who research interests are education related are welcome to apply! There are opportunities for both in person and distance presentations this year. Distance presentations will be facilitated through VoIP technology. Submissions due February 19, 2016 (11:59 EST). Please submit your abstract via our online registration system at http://goo.gl/AquhDR

Date: April 1, 2016 from 9:00am to 6:00pm
Website for information and registering to attend: http://goo.gl/AquhDR

Graduate Orientation Focus Group

The Orientation and Social Committee will soon begin preparations for planning September Orientation. We have already begun discussions with SGPS and Department Graduate Chairs. We would like to reach out to graduate students regarding their own experiences with orientation. We will be hosting these Focus Group sessions in the Grad Club Board Room. Until these dates are decided on, please feel free to contact VP Student Services (services@sogs.ca) if you wish to share your experiences and your ideas for future Orientations.

Call for Submissions – Visual Research Exhibition: Energizing Communities Visually

CSASeeking visual research submissions for a plenary session to be held at the 2016 Canadian Sociological Association Conference at the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences May 30, 2016 – June 3, 2016 to be held at the University of Calgary.

Location: University of Calgary: bldg & room to be determined (2500 University Dr. NW Calgary Alberta T2N 1N4 CA)
Primary Session Category: Visual Sociology
Research Cluster Affiliation: Visual Sociology and Methodologies
Language: English

Session Description: The CSA Visual Sociology and Methodologies Research is seeking submissions of visual work from researchers for a multi-disciplinary exhibition to be held during Congress 2016.

This week long, Congress-wide exhibition will highlight the variety of forms of visual research, including both researcher- and participant-generated images or films. Visual works selected for exhibition may be from a variety of disciplines and mediums. Submissions that address the Congress theme of “energizing communities” are particularly welcome. Submissions will be adjudicated by a panel of visual researchers who represent a spectrum of expertise in visual research. Workshops and Gallery talks are being planned with more information to be announced. Please send any questions or comments to the panel.

Submissions must contain:

  • Exhibition Description /Proposal (maximum 500 words).
  • Short Curriculum Vitae or Resume with current contact information (address, phone and email).
  • 3 Digital Images or 1 digital film/video demonstrating proposed, in-progress or completed work.
  • Please contact the panel organizers if you have any questions about preparing a submission.

Additional information:

  • Please submit via email to the panel organizers
  • Deadline for submissions: March 1st, 2016
  • All applicants will be contacted by March 15th, 2016

Free Movie Night: Warm Bodies


The OSC is hosting a FREE Screening of the paranormal romantic zombie comedy Warm Bodies on Friday, February 12 at 7:30 in the Grad Club Boardroom. Popcorn and snacks will be provided, and there are raffle prizes to be won! Keep up to date and tell us that you’re attending on the Facebook Event Page: https://www.facebook.com/events/788667921279152/

Board Game Night

February Board Game Night is on Wednesday, February 17 @ the Grad Club. Join the Event Page so you can share it with your friends and colleagues. We’re encouraging entire departments to come out! Join the event page to stay updated https://www.facebook.com/events/182628365433340/


VIP Oscars Party

VIP1DressToImpressDress for the Red Carpet and celebrate The 88th Annual Academy Awards season in style

Tickets are $45/per person and includes a Fashion Show for your dinner entertainment during an Oscar worthy dinner
Created by our Grad Club Chef: Mark – A.K.A. Cookie…

2016 Best Picture Menu:

  • ‘MARTIAN’ Marinated CHICKEN Supreme with a roasted red pepper and tomato coulis scented with tarragon,
  • ‘REVENANT’ Roasted BEEF Striploin with a rosemary infused wine reduction,
  • ‘MAD MAX’ Herb POTATOES and medley of Market VEGETABLES,
  • ‘BROOKLYN’ Vegetarian LASAGNA
  • ‘BIG SHORT’ SALADS including Market, Caesar, and Pasta. As well as assorted Breads and butter
  • ‘DANISH GIRL’ Assorted Cakes
  • ‘CREED’ Coffees and Herbal Teas

International Students Bowling Night

StrikeOutOn Tuesday, March 1, IGSIC is hosting a Bowling outing to Fleetway Fun Centre (720 Proudfoot Lane) from 6:00pm – 8:00pm. Tickets are tentatively set at $5 and will be made available at the SOGS Office (UCC 260) on Monday, February 8, 2016.

Please see the Facebook Event Page to stay up to date for more details regarding this event: https://www.facebook.com/events/1113969461980830/

At the Grad ClubGradClub

VIP Oscar Party
Join us Saturday February 20, 2016 for a VIP Oscar Party. Dinner and dancing; $45.00 per person

Family Day Weekend
The Grad Club will be closed for Family Day Weekend: February 13th, 14th and 15th. We will be open regular hours for the remaining of reading week.

Dinner & Movie
Purchase one of our dinner special and you can purchase a Western Film movie for $3.50. Voucher is good for any movie.

Winter Hours of Operation

Monday to Friday – 8:00 AM to 12:00 AM (midnight)
Saturday – closed
Sunday – closed.

The Grad Club will open on weekends for events or conferences
Call 519-661-2111 ext 86386 or e-mail mlalond2@uwo.ca to set up your event.

Free parking after 7:30 PM.

Get Your VanHoutte Coffee Card

Buy ten coffees and get one free.


Trivia Tuesday: 8:00 PM – 11:00 PM
Come early to get a good seat

Every Thursday: Mill St presents Rick McGhie – 8:00 PM start

Lunch Specials

Tuesday – 11:30am – 1:30PM
Pad Thai or Buffalo Chicken Wrap – vegetarian options available

Wednesday – 11:30am – 1:30PM – $10.25 one trip
Indian Buffet (South Asian Cuisine)

Thursday – 11:30am – 1:30pm – $8.50
Create your own Pasta; gluten free pasta available

Friday – 11:30AM – 1:30PM
Themed buffet

You can find all of our lunch and dinner specials on the Grad Club website http://gradclub.sogs.ca/

Book the Goblet

To reserve The Goblet of Knowledge for your upcoming defense party, call Marc 519-661-2111 ext 86386.

February trivia

SOGSTriviaEach month, SOGS hosts a trivia contest featuring information from our annual day planner or our website. Correct answers are entered into a drawing and five students will win a certificate to the Grad Club! Please email your response to sogs.contest@uwo.ca by February 29.

Winners can pick up their Grad Club certificates in the SOGS office during regular office hours, and their names will be posted in next month’s newsletter.

February Question:

Please describe the purpose and/or content of the SOGS Annual General Meeting.

January Winners:

Since our VP External messed up and never posted a December question (sorry!), we have eight winners instead of the usual five for January’s question.

Congratulations to our January winners!

  • Linsey Giba
  • Heidi Kellett
  • Susanna George
  • Taylor Strande
  • Gwynne Wing Lam Ng
  • Tara Condos
  • Ruth Wong
  • Lola Wong

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