AGM Updates

SOGS AGM: February 15, 2018
6pm, Middlesex College (MC) 105B

For the full report, see here.

Announcements:

  • SOGS Office will close after February 16 and will re-open on March 1 in Middlesex College (MC) Room 8. Please keep an eye on our website and social.
  • Western Research Forum will be held on March 16.
  • SOGS Presidential Election (18-19) nominations will close February 23. Please contact Chief Returning Officier (CRO) (stephanie.dennie@uwo.ca) and the Deputy Chief Returning Officer (clamire2@uwo.ca). More information can be found here.

SOGS Budget

For the full Budget presentation, see here.

  • Implemented Wellness Joint Fund, Graduate Wellness Week budget, Orientation (50th Anniversary) budget increases.
  • Increased funding of Placement Subsidy.
  • Increased departmental grants (dependent on Councillors).
  • Supporting Graduate Student Senators.
  • Taken minimum wage into consideration for the Grad Club.
  • In the future, we will see stagnant enrolment due to the Ontario government altering how graduate programs are structured.
  • The proposed 18-19 budget passed unanimously.

PSAC 610

  • Shannon Potter, President, has provided additional information on Strike Mandate Info Sessions. For more information, please see their website and their social media to remain engaged.
  • Next meeting with the employers will take place during the first week of March.

Executive Reports (Important/Extra Information)

For all and full reports (including committees under each Executive), please see the AGM Package.

President: For those interested in running for the Office of SOGS President, please see here for more information. REMINDER: the SOGS Office is MOVING to Middlesex College (Room 8).

VP Academic: Western Research Forum discussion component is cancelled due to scheduling conflicts. Will be incorporating a wellness event by working with the Wellness Coordinator.

VP Advocacy: Graduate Peer Support (GPS) responsible for the Food Bank and adjucating Wellness Joint Fund applications.

For those who have not seen the website yet, please check out the SOGS Not All the Same website. Devoted to highlighting the many differences amongst graduate students. Breastfeeding station map is fully up-to-date and on the website.

Graduate Student Issues Committee (GSIC) have provided data have reviewed the results of their recent survey. Found that financial and academic issues are the highest reported by graduate students.

SOGS has matched Western University’s donation of $1000 to the London Pride Parade. Pride Discussion groups happen each month (next one is on March

For more information about Commissioners, contact VP Advocacy: advocacy@sogs.ca.

VP Finance: Trying to sustainably renovate the Grad Club. For more information, please contact finance@sogs.ca.

VP Student Services: Call to action for greater visibility on graduate mental health. Provide Western with feedback on their Mental Health Strategy Draft, and consider getting involved by contacting services@sogs.ca.

Crisis Drop-in set from March 13-April 12. All dates detailed on SOGS Facebook Events.

The USC Tax Clinic has agreed to run a graduate-specific time slot on March 26 from 9am-12pm.

Please fill out the Health Plan survey that was sent out February 6.

Please sign the International Graduate Student Issues Committee (IGSIC) petition in support of international students.

Please encourage all international graduate students to fill out the Student Satisfaction Survey that was sent directly to them via email.

We need people to join the 50th Anniversary Planning Committee! If interested, contact services@sogs.ca.

SOGS PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION 2018

CALL FOR NOMINEES FOR SOGS PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION 2018

All SOGS members are eligible to be nominated for the position of President. The nomination is period is February 5 – 23 2018 (close of business day).

Nomination forms must be obtained from and submitted in writing to the SOGS Office (UCC 260). A complete form requires two nominating signatures from members in good standing.

Further information about campaigns and elections will be posted after the nomination period. An election will only take place if there are multiple candidates. If a candidate is unopposed, they are acclaimed to the post of President.

Questions should be directed to the Chief Returning Officer, Stephanie Dennie (stephanie.dennie@uwo.ca) and the Deputy Chief Returning Officer, Chantal Lemire (clemire2@uwo.ca).

For more information on the elections process, consider consulting the Elections Handbook.

 

Duties of the President

A complete description of the President’s duties and elections rules can be found in the SOGS Constitutions and Bylaws. A selection appears below.

 

The President

  • shall be responsible for the overall operation of the affairs of the Society.
  • shall oversee the bookkeeping and administrative functions of the Society.
  • shall be responsible for ensuring the Vice-Presidents execute their duties.
  • shall be a non-voting member, ex-officio, of all standing committees of the Society.
  • shall be responsible for calling a meeting of the Executive prior to any General or Council meeting.
  • shall chair Executive meetings and prepare an agenda.
  • shall be responsible for the minutes of Executive meetings.
  • shall, with the Vice-President Finance, and only with Council’s approval, enter into loan agreements on behalf of the Society.
  • shall, with the Vice-President Finance, be responsible for the administration of the Society’s emergency loan system, travel grants fund, and child care fund.
  • shall, with the Vice-President Finance, and with Council’s approval, be responsible for the administration of the Society’s long-term investments.
  • shall ensure the names of the winners of Society’s non-confidential sponsored programs are published.
  • shall co-ordinate the contract renewal process for the Society’s office staff.
  • shall maintain organizational charts that reflect the mandate, operations, and needs of the Society, and shall update them annually.
  • shall, as appropriate, call a meeting of all Executive Officers, Commissioners and Committee Chairs to discuss issues with the Society, which shall be reported to Council.

Thank you,

Stephanie Dennie, M.A, B.A

Doctoral Student

The University of Western Ontario

Department of Classics

January 2018 Council

The following provides a brief summary of the recent Council meeting on January 25. The complete Council package, which includes the agenda and reports, can be accessed online. Full minutes of the January Council meeting will be available in the February 2018 Council package.

This summary is provided to increase transparency, and to support Councillors in completing their obligations under Bylaw 2.3.5; “shall regularly communicate with his or her constituents concerning the activities, programs, and decisions of the Society”.

If you have any questions, please contact our Communications Administrator (sogs.communications@uwo.ca) or the Speaker (speaker@sogs.ca).

ANNOUNCEMENTS

The SOGS Annual General Meeting (AGM) will take place on Thursday, February 15 at 6:00pm. Location MC105B.

The SOGS Office will be MOVING to Middlesex College (MC) and therefore will be closed from February 22 to February 28. It will tentatively re-open on March 1, 2018.

The SOGS February Council will be held on Thursday, March 1 at 6:00pm. Location MC 105B. Celebration for SOGS’ Grand Opening will take place after February Council.

ELECTIONS

The Appeals Review Commission (ARC) (under the Speaker’s portfolio) is now full.

The SOGS Presidential Election is around the corner! Keep an eye on our website, social media, and newsletter.

IMPORTANT UPDATES

  • Please spread the word regarding our “Not All the Same” campaign: http://nats.sogs.ca/. The next profile that will be released is on international students.
  • Please encourage Year X colleagues to come forward so that SOGS can offer support and mediation.
  • The Mental Health Strategy (2017-2020) will be sent out to the larger community for feedback on Monday, January 29. Keep an eye on your email!
  • Please encourage colleagues who have experienced issues with their supervisors to come forward so that SOGS can offer support and mediation.
  • University of Toronto has eliminated international fees for international graduate students (they now pay domestic fees). We will continue to pursue this ask at the administrative level.
  • As of July 1, 2019, Western University will (this will not impact the Indigenous community on campus) begin to phase out of smoking-designated spaces will begin in an effort to be a smoke-free campus.
  • PSAC 610 Bargaining Updates: If anyone has worked more than 140 hours, please come forward so that the Union can grieve on your behalf. According to the PSAC 610, more than half of TAs work overtime. Keep informed here: https://www.psac610.ca/
  • Ontario’s Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development has released its new Strategic Mandate: http://provost.uwo.ca/provost/Western-SMA2-Final-2017.pdf.

IMPORTANT DATES

Monday, January 29, 2018: SOGS LGBTQIA Board Game Night
https://www.facebook.com/events/213381685876940/

Wednesday, January 31, 2018: Bell Let’s Talk
https://www.facebook.com/BellLetsTalk/

Thursday, February 1, 2018: CFS Day of Action and PSAC 610 Mobilization (6-8pm) at the Grad Club.

Monday, February 12, 2018: SOGS Stitch & Bitch @ the Grad Club.
https://www.facebook.com/events/192430961311707/

Wednesday, February 14, 2018
LGBTQIA Discussion Group SOGS Board Room (UCC 260)

Thursday, February 15, 2018
The SOGS Annual General Meeting (AGM) will take place on Thursday, February 15 at 6:00pm. Location MC105B.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018
SOGS February Board Game Night: https://www.facebook.com/events/173546413253211/

Friday, March 16, 2018: The SOGS Western Research Forum. Location TBD. Keep an eye on the website for updates: http://sogs.ca/member-services/western-research-forum/

Mid-March: Winter Graduate Student Teaching Award Nominations released.

COMMITTEE PROJECT UPDATES

Grad Club Committee: Received quote for Grad Club renovation: $400,000. Unfeasible. Will save the Grad Club levy for the next year and design a business plan before moving forward.

IGSIC Committee: Pending approval of SOGS Council, IGSIC will send out its survey by the end of January. Please inform international graduate students to keep an eye on their emails.

Health Plan Committee: Studentcare should release its survey by the end of January. Please keep an eye on your email.

IGSIC: Will begin assessing the feedback it received from its survey.

Equity Committee: Working on another Consent and Compassion Forum under the portfolio of Sexual Violence and Prevention and Education.

IMPORTANT MOTIONS PASSED

Motion 6 SOGS Budget (VP Finance)
BIRT Council approve the SOGS and Grad Club 2017-18 budgets.

Motion 1 (SOGS President)
Whereas $1500 from the 2015–16 surplus were allocated for a fundraising event held in November 2016;
Whereas $1119.09 remain from this allocated amount;
Whereas the SOGS office staff are in need of new, more supportive office chairs;
BIRT the $1119.09 remaining from the 2015–16 surplus allocation “Thesis Fund: Fundraising Event” be used to purchase new office chairs for the SOGS office.

Motion 3 Clarifying the Intent of the Placement Subsidy (VP Finance)
Whereas there is confusion regarding the original intent of the placement subsidy;
Whereas the VP Finance wishes to clearly communicate the vision for the placement subsidy before adding it to the 2018-2019 budget;
BIRT council adopt the placement subsidy as described in the Appendix.

Motion 4 Placement Subsidy Funding (VP Finance)
Whereas there is additional money to be spent from the 2015-2016 surplus and $2,000 of the unspent money was allocated to the Reception Fund- Academic Portfolio Joint Fund;
Whereas the budget for the Academic Joint Fund was increased for the 2017-2018 fiscal year and is not projected to be overdrawn;
Whereas the placement subsidy is currently funded using the previous year’s surplus and there was no surplus in 2016- 2017;
BIRT the $2,000 dedicated to the Reception Fund- Academic Joint Fund from the 2015-2016 surplus be reallocated to the placement subsidy;
BIFRT the Subsidies and Bursaries Committee allocate the additional $2000 to applications received in the 2017-2018 year.

Motion 5 Naylor Report (VP Finance)
Whereas funding for science remains an important issue for both graduate students at Western and Canada at large;
Whereas the Government of Canada commissioned a review of funding for science and scholars that resulted in the Fundamental Science Review, which makes 35 recommendations to better support science in Canada;
Whereas the Science and Policy Exchange has written an open letter to support the implementation of the proposals in the Fundamental Science Review and engaged in a #Students4theReport advocacy campaign;
BIRT the Society of Graduate Students support the Science and Policy Exchange in their advocacy;
BIRT the Society of Graduate Students sign the open letter attached in the Appendix;
BIRT the Society of Graduate Students allow the Science and Policy Exchange to use the Society of Graduate Student’s logo on their website (e.g. http://www.sp-exchange.ca/students4thereport/) alongside the logos of other student associations.

Motion 9 (VP Student Services)
Whereas the International Graduate Student Issues Committee (IGSIC) wishes to obtain data on current international graduate students in the hope of improving their overall student experience;
Whereas IGSIC will report on the survey results in an Executive Summary to Council;
BIRT Council approves IGSIC’s international graduate student survey.

 

Winter Bus Pass pickup starts Monday, Dec 11, noon

Students without a WesternONE tap card can pick up a paper pass for the winter term staring

Monday, Dec 11, noon

 

In addition, SOGS will have extended hours the first week to accommodate students with hours beyond our regular office hours of 9 am to 4 pm:

  • Monday, January 8, 2018:  9 am – 6 pm
  • Tuesday, January 9, 2018:  9 am – 5 pm
  • Wednesday, January 10, 2018:  8 am -6 pm
  • Thursday, January 11, 2018:  9 am – 5 pm
  • Friday, January 12, 2018: 9 am – 5 pm
  • Monday, January 15, 2018: 9 am – 5 pm
  • Tuesday, January 16, 2018: 9 am – 5 pm

Subsidy and Bursary Deadlines

Subsidy applications must be provided by the last business day of each term.

This term’s deadline for applications is December 22.

*REMEMBER: The SOGS office only accepts hard copy subsidy applications. Because SOGS is a non-profit organization, we require original receipts. We cannot accept per-diems.

More information can be found at sogs.ca/member-services/financial-support/#subsidies

 

SOGS Bursary deadline dates are September 30, January 31, and May 31.

Applications are completed online through the SGPS Graduate Student Portal. More information can be found at sogs.ca/member-services/financial-support/#bursaries

November 2017: Council

The following provides a brief summary of the recent Council meeting on November 30. The complete Council package, which includes the agenda and reports, can be accessed online. Full minutes of the November Council meeting will be available in the January 2018 Council package.

This summary is provided to increase transparency, and to support Councillors in completing their obligations under Bylaw 2.3.5; “shall regularly communicate with his or her constituents concerning the activities, programs, and decisions of the Society”.

If you have any questions, please contact our office or the Speaker.

ANNOUNCEMENTS

The SOGS Western Research Forum will tentatively take place on Friday, March 16, 2018. Call for abstracts are due December 25 through http://ir.lib.uwo.ca/wrf/.

SOGS Council does not meet in December.

The next Council meeting will take place on January 25, 2017. Location TBD.

The SOGS Annual General Meeting (AGM) will take place on Thursday, February 15 at 6:00pm. Location TBD.

The SOGS February Council will be held on Thursday, March 1 at 6:00pm.

ELECTIONS

Chief Returning Officer (CRO) (responsible for overseeing the SOGS Presidential Election): Stephanie Dennie.

UPDATE ON PSAC 610 BARGAINING

  • Bargaining asks:
    • Real wage increases
    • Appointments
    • Tuition rebate
    • Benefits
    • Hours of work/overtime
  • Please keep up-to-date on bargaining updates on the PSAC 610 website (psac610.ca) and PSAC 610 social media (@PSAC610).
  • If you have questions or concerns about bargaining, please contact gta.bt@psac610.ca.

IMPORTANT DATES

November 21 – December 21: CRISIS SATELITTE (Middlesex Crisis) Drop-In: Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays from 5-9pm in Health Services.

December 7 (7:30pm) @ the Grad Club. Purchase your tickets ($5) in the SOGS Office (UCC 260). The NOT ALL THE SAME campaign will formally launch at this event. Please encourage your friends and colleagues to attend:

https://www.facebook.com/events/1472319399547421/?ti=icl

December 22 – SOGS Subsidy Deadline is due December 22. Subsidy applications must be submitted in hard copy.

SOGS will send out an announcement when the new paper bus passes will be available for the winter term.

January 3 – Winter Orientation hosted by SGPS for incoming new graduate students.

IMPORTANT MOTIONS PASSED

Whereas SGPS has recently directed graduate chairs to communicate to year X graduate students threatening them with removal from the program if they have not completed by a certain date;

Whereas Year X students continue to pay full tuition to Western despite not making significant uses of university resources;

Whereas this time limit particularly disadvantages students with financial need or family or mental health barriers;

BIRT Council oppose this imposition of time limits on Year X students

BIFRT Council ask that the Executive strongly oppose this practice in meetings with SGPS.

COMMITTEE PROJECT UPDATES

IGSIC Committee: Will be sending out a general satisfaction survey to international graduate students within the month.

GSIC Committee: Will be sending out a one-question survey regarding the current issues facing graduate students at Western.

Health Plan Committee: looking for feedback on whether or not to remain in two-year contracts at a two-year rate guarantee or to potentially look into extending the contract.

Grad Club Committee: Stitch & Bitch second Monday of every month! The Grad Club Bar is rotting – we need to do something about it.

Option A: $15,000 for millwork + other plumbing/bar/electrical costs + 25% contingency fee = $150,000.

Option B: $25-35,000 + cabinets, finishing = $100,000. Plumbing + electrical: $50,000. Rebuild storage room: $12-15,000. Demo bar + build bulkhead = $7,500. Flooring: $5000. + %25 contingency fee = $225,000 – $250,000.

Petition: Support for International Students

Petition for Full and Equal Access for International Students at the University of Western Ontario

  • Whereas international students already pay tuition fees that are 3 to 4 times higher (2.5 higher at Western University) than fees charged to domestic students for the same education; and
  • Whereas international student’s tuition fees are deregulated in Ontario, and in some cases these fees are raised by 20 per cent in a year (5% at Western University); and
  • Whereas institutions continue to use differential tuition fees for international students as a revenue generating strategy due to lack of adequate government funding; and
  • Whereas in 1994, the Ontario government disqualified international students from the Ontario Health Insurance Program (OHIP) and;
  • Whereas international students studying at universities must enroll in a private health insurance program – the University Health Insurance Plan (UHIP) – which costs between $600.00 and $2000.00 per year. This for-profit health insurance plan provides limited health coverage that is not accepted universally by physicians, hospitals and clinics in Ontario; and
  • Whereas provinces like British Columbia, Manitoba, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia currently include international students on their provincial health insurance programs; and
  • Whereas international students contribute over $4.4 billion annually to the province’s economy through paying tuition fees, basic living expenses and consumer spending; and
  • Whereas international students are not eligible for federal funding from Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHR) and Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) except for Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships

We the undersigned petition the administration at the University of Western Ontario to support the Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario’s call and Petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to:

i. Petition the University of Western Ontario’s administration to stop unfair practice of deregulated tuition fee hikes for international students and support the call by the Canadian Federation of Students Ontario to call on the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to increase funding; and

ii. Petition the University of Western Ontario to petition to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to restore OHIP coverage for international students.

iii. Petition the University of Western Ontario to petition Minister Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science, to extended eligibility for Canada’s three funding agencies (NSERC, SSHRC, and CIHR) to international students.

 

Support for International Students

  

Petition for Full and Equal Access for International Students at the University of Western Ontario

• Whereas international students already pay tuition fees that are 3 to 4 times higher than fees charged to domestic students for the same education; and
• Whereas international student’s tuition fees are deregulated in Ontario, and in some cases these fees are raised by 20 per cent in a year; and
• Whereas institutions continue to use differential tuition fees for international students as a revenue generating strategy due to lack of adequate government funding; and
• Whereas in 1994, the Ontario government disqualified international students from the Ontario Health Insurance Program (OHIP) and;
• Whereas international students studying at universities must enroll in a private health insurance program – the University Health Insurance Plan (UHIP) – which costs between $600.00 and $2000.00 per year. This for-profit health insurance plan provides limited health coverage that is not accepted universally by physicians, hospitals and clinics in Ontario; and
• Whereas provinces like British Columbia, Manitoba, Prince Edward Island, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia currently include international students on their provincial health insurance programs; and
• Whereas international students contribute over $4.4 billion annually to the province’s economy through paying tuition fees, basic living expenses and consumer spending; and
• Whereas international students are not eligible for federal funding from Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHR) and Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) except for Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships

We the undersigned petition the administration at the University of Western Ontario support the Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario’s call and Petition the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to:
i. Petition the University of Western Ontario’s administration to stop unfair practice of deregulated tuition fee hikes for international students and support the call by the Canadian Federation of Students Ontario to call on the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to increase funding; and
ii. Petition the University of Western Ontario to petition to the Legislative Assembly of Ontario to restore OHIP coverage for international students.
iii. Petition the University of Western Ontario to petition Minister Kirsty Duncan, Minister of Science, to extended eligibility for Canada’s three funding agencies (NSERC, SSHRC, and CIHR) to international students

**your signature**

225 signatures

Share this with your friends: http://sogs.ca/2017/11/08/petition-support-for-international-students/

   

 

 

Latest Signatures
225 Mr boquan c. Feb 24, 2018
224 Ms Noor B. Feb 24, 2018
223 Ms Judy B. Feb 24, 2018
222 Miss Karishma H. Feb 23, 2018
221 Ms Kerri B. Feb 22, 2018
220 Miss Cristiane F. Feb 21, 2018
219 Mr Tyler B. Feb 21, 2018
218 Ms Camille C. Feb 21, 2018
217 Miss Melissa Caroline A. Feb 21, 2018
216 Miss Rebecca D. Feb 21, 2018
215 Mr Narlon Cassio B. Feb 21, 2018
214 Mr Matthew F. Feb 21, 2018
213 Miss Taniya N. Feb 21, 2018
212 Ms Najmeh K. Feb 16, 2018
211 Mr Alex M. Feb 15, 2018
210 Ms Sarah C. Feb 15, 2018
209 Mr Emad N. Feb 15, 2018
208 Mr Will S. Feb 15, 2018
207 Ms Ashleigh Y. Feb 15, 2018
206 Mr nikola m. Feb 14, 2018
205 Ms Sheetala B. Feb 14, 2018
204 Mr Grant D. Feb 14, 2018
203 Mx. kirstyn s. Feb 14, 2018
202 Mr Toluwase A. Feb 10, 2018
201 Mr Andrew W. Feb 09, 2018
200 Mr Bineet O. Feb 08, 2018
199 Ms Allan P. Feb 08, 2018
198 Mr Mohamed M. Feb 08, 2018
197 Ms Peony T. Feb 08, 2018
196 Ms Zhang J. Feb 08, 2018
195 Ms Jocelyn R. Feb 08, 2018
194 Ms Yeonjeong B. Feb 08, 2018
193 Ms Yuqing L. Feb 08, 2018
192 Miss Cassiopée B. Feb 08, 2018
191 Ms Bashaier A. Feb 08, 2018
190 Ms Dieta J. Feb 08, 2018
189 Mr Chuma A. Feb 08, 2018
188 Mr Milad N. Feb 08, 2018
187 Ms Yajun H. Feb 08, 2018
186 Mrs Jose M. Feb 08, 2018
185 Ms XUEQING T. Feb 08, 2018
184 Ms Kana K. Feb 08, 2018
183 Mr David R. Feb 08, 2018
182 Ms Vivian K. Feb 08, 2018
181 Ms Amleia P. Feb 08, 2018
180 Mr shengmiao j. Feb 08, 2018
179 Mr KAUSTUBH P. Feb 01, 2018
178 Ms Lianne M. Jan 31, 2018
177 Ms Mary Blake B. Jan 28, 2018
176 Miss MAZIYAH M. Jan 22, 2018
 

ISIC – International Student Identity Card

Get your International Student Identity Card (ISIC) for free at

isiccanada.ca/cfsfcee

 

As a full-time graduate student at Western University, and under the Canadian Federation of Students, you are eligible for a free ISIC Card.

For proof of full-time status:
– Upload a copy of your tuition bill from student.uwo.ca

For your proof of ID:
– Proof of your date of birth (e.g. passport, birth certificate, official identity card issued in your country of residence)