WINNER, WINNER, CHICKEN DINNER!

WINNER, WINNER, CHICKEN DINNER!

Congratulations to the four students that won prizes for GSA Short Video Competition! Here are the videos with links, and the top two are previewed below:

1. Grand Prize: Poodle playing with a small soccer ball by Chih Ting (https://youtu.be/K1xzGLZcYR0)
2. Second Place: Choose your graduate student quarantine edition by Lauren (https://youtu.be/Uo7jPqP1d-s)
3. Third Place: When you’re a clutz stuck at home and Yoshi’s life by Sergio (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z7B3uSXmLF8)
4. Fourth Place: Dog Egg Challenge by Monica (https://vm.tiktok.com/T53jGq/https://vm.tiktok.com/T53jGq/)

Thank you for participating and voting!

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES:
ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

Hello Graduate Students! My name is Mona Mohamed, I have been with the GSA for over 5 years, I have a B.Sc. in Chemistry and Zoology from Alexandria University in Egypt. I love administration a lot, so, I am now taking a Diploma in Management, Business Administration to add to my administrative experience. I will be able to assist with general inquires related to funding, sponsorship, clubs and specifically inquires related to Health & Dental. 

If you have ever wondered where the GSA office is, look at this picture below… We are right beside the Phoneix and across from the General Science Building and near the GO Bus. Right now, you can find me on email at macgsa@mcmaster.ca.

UPDATES FROM GSA

UPDATES FROM GSA

Each year, in accordance with a contractual agreement the GSA has with the HSR, students obtain a highly-subsidized rate to access the busing system in Hamilton. 

At the GSA, we are currently in conversation with HSR given the announcement that the Fall semester will be administered online. We are negotiating a contract that will allow graduate students to maintain HSR passes to access our various offices, labs and other essential physical spaces on campus and around Hamilton. We will keep you updated on this process and please reach out and let us know your thoughts about what you’d want our HSR pass to look like throughout the next academic year, especially the Fall semester. We will keep you updated about this and all other matters pertaining to the Fall semester and how the GSA is working on your behalf through our social media and our mailers. Also, feel free to join our weekly drop-in every Wednesday! More information below.

Your GSA

JOIN A WEEKLY CALL with GSA President, Shawn Hercules, and Andrea Cole from the School of Graduate Studies! 

When?  Wednesdays between 1:00 PM until 2:00PM.
Where? Register for the Zoom link here.
What? Bring your coffee and come for a chat!
Questions? Andrea Cole coleand@mcmaster.ca

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: DIRECTOR OF OPERATION

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: DIRECTOR OF OPERATION

Hello Graduate Students! My name is Ashley Ravenscroft and I am passionate about higher education in post-secondary institutions and student governance. My passion for higher education was sparked over a decade ago, when I attended McMaster University as an Undergraduate student. And it has continued with me through to Graduate School.

When I’m not working on the mission, mandate and vision of the organization, you can usually find me at home. I have three children, two are school-aged, and the third I am married to. I think that might be a ‘mom-joke,’ but nevertheless, I have lived in Hamilton since obtaining my first degree and love all the city has to offer – the market, trails and, of course, waterfalls! 

During my tenure with the GSA of McMaster University, I have had the pleasure of working with hundreds are graduate students. We have also had many successes during this time, such as the reinstatement of the Student Wellness Centre operations, increasing the student benefits package at no additional cost to students. And, increasing mental health supports to our Graduate Students through 24/7 supports, and an increased health reimbursement threshold.

I have also had the opportunity to participate in multiple student initiatives and advocate on their behalf. One of such of these successes was the induction of a minimum funding package at McMaster, which is $13,500.00 + supp & tuition fee.

This year I am confident that we have a strong team and we are going to accomplish more of the strategic plans goal this year.

I hope to meet you virtually or in-person at a future GSA committee, event, or the graduate student owned and operated, Phoenix Craft House and Grill.

Warm wishes,
Ashley

RESOURCES FROM THE GSA AGAINST ANTI-BLACK RACISM

RESOURCES FROM THE GSA AGAINST ANTI-BLACK RACISM

At the GSA, we believe that there is no place for anti-Black racism and violence in our community at McMaster University. The past few weeks have only made these issues more apparent, but anti-Black racism is something that many of us within our community have been facing and dealing with in all facets of our lives, even at McMaster University.  We have to realize our impact as graduate students at McMaster and support our Black community as best as we can.

We currently support a GSA club, the ACGSA (African Caribbean Graduate Students’ Association), that has made themselves available for students within this community that may have faced anti-Black racism and can be reached via email: acgsa.mac@gmail.com. Upon request, they will send further information about how to be added to their Facebook group. We will continue to stand beside them and support them as best as we can. We also echo the sentiments that were expressed by the African Caribbean Faculty Association at McMaster that can be found here.

The purpose of this section in the mailer is not to just “write a statement” but to offer resources to our community for support.

If you need further support, culturally relevant mental health and legal services can be found here:

For more resources on how to take action, visit Black Lives Matter and get involved at McMaster Equity and Inclusion Education.

You can also use the following resources to support Black-owned businesses in Hamilton.

Please collectively fight to support anti-racism because the weight of these deep-rooted issues must be burdened upon all of us. When your friend needs support, lend a hand as we evolve together. We all need to be better.

Sincerely,
Your GSA

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: VP-ADMIN

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: VP-ADMIN

Hello everyone! My name is Anthony Quarshie and I am the GSA Vice-President Administration 2020-2021. In the capacity of VP Admin, I serve as the internal auditor of our operations. In this role, I provide oversight for the financial position of both The GSA and The Phoenix. I also attend to the various finance related policies of both the GSA and Phoenix. I am the Chair of The GSA Finance Committee where we monitor the financial progress of both the GSA and Phoenix. So, if you have an interest in learning about the financial review of the GSA or just to get a peek into how The Phoenix is run, I invite you to send me an email at gsavpadmin@mcmaster.ca.
 
Outside of the GSA, I do my research at the McMaster Advanced Control Consortium on the efficient operation of Air Separation Units under the supervision of Dr Chris L. E. Swartz in the Department of Chemical Engineering.
 
The GSA has had a wonderful journey so far in terms of its financial dealings and I am excited to play a part in sustaining that journey.

LETTER FROM THE GSA

LETTER FROM THE GSA

Dear graduate students of McMaster University,

The past 3 months have not been easy as we have transitioned our work online quickly and adapted to new roadblocks in our graduate careers. Whether you are starting, in the middle, or at the end of your degree, you have undoubtedly faced unexpected challenges and had to search for answers in a time of uncertainty. We hope that the announcement of a virtual semester can provide a framework for you to structure the months ahead, as the Administration has made the right decision for the Fall term classes to be online in a recent letter. As questions come up, they should not be left unanswered, please reach out so we can support you in navigating through your unique journey. We are all facing varying levels of distress and want you to know that we are here for you as a support network and will do our best to assist you.

The return to on-campus research is expected to happen no later than June 1st for Phase 1 of this process and your first point of contact regarding this manner is your supervisor. In short, this phase allows “a limited number of research personnel to access campus for research that cannot be undertaken in a remote manner“. More information about this process can be found here

Your GSA 

Do you have immediate questions?! JOIN A WEEKLY CALL with GSA President and Andrea Cole from the School of Graduate Studies! 

When?  Wednesdays between 1:00 PM until 2:00PM.
Where? Register for the Zoom link here.
What? Bring your coffee and come for a chat!
Questions? Andrea Cole coleand@mcmaster.ca

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: VP-SERVICES

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: VP-SERVICES

Hello everyone! My name is Wei Zhao. I am the VP Services of the Graduate Students Association.

There are 2 main responsibilities of my role, that is “Health and Dental” and “Summer Leagues”. As for “Health and Dental”, I monitor the whole structure of our GSA Health & Dental Insurance Plan, such as insurance usage, enrolment, opt-out. Each term, I will hold a UHIP Workshop collaborated with International Student Services. As for “Summer Leagues”, there are 3 leagues each year: Curling League, Soccer League and Softball League! I will help each team to order parking passes, sign waivers and so on. Besides that, I am also the Chair of Clubs Committee. Thus, if you want to establish a new club, or if you have questions when running your current club, please feel free to contact me. I have many resources to help you!

At McMaster University, I am a third year PhD student in the Department of Computing & Software. My current research is about millimetre-wave radar localization and sensing. I am in the research group of Dr. Rong Zheng, and co-supervised with Dr. Jiankang Zhang.

Favourite Video: Japanese Anime
Favourite Activity: Swimming
Favourite Animal: Husky

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: VP-INTERNAL

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: VP-INTERNAL

Hi everyone! My name is Caroline Seiler and I am the GSA Vice-President Internal 2020-2021. I represent the GSA for academic matters and plan academic & social events, especially Welcome Week! In my role, I organize the Academic Affairs Committee which meets monthly to talk about issues that affect the academic life of grad students, including departmental & faculty issues, career planning, and administration. We’re always looking for members, so email me if you want to join!

On campus, you can find me at McMaster University Medical Centre in the Department of Medical Sciences, researching the effects of different dietary components on individuals with irritable bowel syndrome, under Drs. Premysl Bercik and M. Ines Pinto-Sanchez. I’m excited to represent you all and I plan to organize events and services to help keep grad students connected and supported. 

If you have any questions, contact me at gsavpint@mcmaster.ca and I’d be happy to chat! 

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: VP-EXTERNAL​

GSA INTRODUCTION SERIES: VP-External

Hello friends! My name is Sydney Valentino and I am the GSA Vice-President External 2020-2021. I share and communicate with you through Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn, and, my favourite, The GSA Weekly. In my role, I organize the Student Issues Actions Committee, Social Trips and Events. What events would you like to see in the next year?

On campus you can find me in Ivor Wynne Centre in the Department of Kinesiology, studying cardiovascular physiology in individuals with a spinal cord injury, under the supervision of Dr. Maureen MacDonald. I am passionate about fostering a connection between all McMaster graduate students, knowledge translation, and supporting student-led initiatives across disciplines and beyond campus borders. I would love to hear from you on activities you are leading and would like to share with our community.  
 
Since the new physical distancing measures, you can find me using eye drops to combat computer-induced dry eyes or attempting to balance my sedentary time by working out with friends on Zoom!

What are your questions for me? Email me at gsavpext@mcmaster.calet’s chat!