Advocacy

The GSA spends a considerable effort representing the needs and concerns of graduate students to the Laurier administration, the municipal, provincial, and federal governments, and other external bodies.

We also work one-on-one with graduate students who require advocacy assistance for both curricular and co-curricular reasons.

Local Advocacy Efforts:

Our current advocacy initiatives are:

  • Ensuring that MSW students have a positive and enriched experience with the MSW practicum office and in their practicum placements
  • Asking Laurier to commit to a mandatory TA Training program that includes Gendered Violence, Micro-aggression's in the classroom, the TRC in the classroom, FIPPA legislation and all government regulated training pieces for employees
  • Requesting that graduate students receive the same benefits of a mid-semester break (Fall Reading Week) that undergraduate students at Laurier receive
  • Pushing to have the Tuition Payment plan for graduate students become a permanent option (pilot program in Fall 2016)

 

 

PAST WINS:

Historically the GSA has been effective in representing the needs and concerns of our diverse community. We have experienced advocacy “wins” in the following areas:

  • Securing a webpage and guide where graduate students can go for help in terms of their employment with the university
  • Secured funds from the Sustainable Hawk Fund for creation of an herb garden outside of Veritas
  • Raised awareness about the need for clearer communication in faculties regarding research assistantship pay on all communication channels 
  • Developing a student-supervisor checklist to encourage positive working relationships
  • Ensuring that the graduate student voice was heard during Laurier’s Integrated Planning and Resource Management (IPRM) project
  • Detailing the specific needs of graduate students with respect to the Access Copyright fee
  • Building and maintaining cross-departmental relationships to create diverse programming to reach all graduate students
  • Championing mental health on campus, acting as leaders and contributing to the development of a Wellness Strategy and Centre for Laurier
  • Executing graduate student feedback into the graduate student Health and Dental Plan options
  • Ensuring that the departments reporting to the VP: Student Affairs have programs and services that reflect the needs of the graduate student population
  • Offering guidance to all graduate students with individual needs and confidential matters
  • Creating the Laurier Wellness HUB – an online tool that all Laurier students can access (now through the Wellness Centre) wellness information through
  • Developing the Laurier Library Exhibit space to showcase graduate student research
  • Ensuring that graduate students are represented on all university committees
  • Working to see the establishment of parental leave benefits for PhD students