Hi everyone! My name is Rida Mohsin and I am one of the new GSA Social Science Faculty Representatives. I communicate faculty updates within the GSA and act as a liaison between the association and the faculty. I am currently an MA student here at Mac within the Political Science department. Feel free to contact me with any relevant concerns or questions about anything within the Faculty of Social Sciences, or anything you wish to communicate to the GSA. You can contact me at my Mac email at Thank you!

Thank you, Rida, for being our tenth feature on this Introduction Series. We have a number of amazing GSA Clubs and Faculty Representatives of the Council that you can connect with! Check the full list on our website.



Weekly Coffee Drop-in, every Monday! Next event is November 1st at 12:30 p.m., gather with your fellow engineers online to have a casual chat! Register here

Data Science Workshop 2 on November 18 at 7 to 8:30 p.m. The McMaster GSA proudly presents our 6-part Data Science workshop series hosted by Larry Simon. Through these workshops, participants will learn about Python, data visualization, databases, statistics for data science, and machine learning. Participants who attend 5 out of the 6 workshops between now and March 2021 will receive a non-accredited certificate of completion. Event registration here.

Insight Fellows Program Applications due for Winter 2021: We’re now accepting applications from graduating students (must complete all coursework by January 19th in order to participate full time) for our winter sessions. Insight Fellowship is a seven-week professional training fellowship for graduating students and working professionals looking to transition to thriving careers as data scientists, engineers, and other cutting-edge professionals. Apply here to the fully-remote winter session by November 2. Questions can be emailed here.

EGS Fall 2020: Technical Workshop 2: Intro to R on November 12 at 1 to 3 p.m. (Facilitator: Vivek Jadon)
Attendees will learn the basics of each programming language. This includes (but not limited to) setting up a dedicated environment, applications of loops, “if else” statements, creating functions, as well as performing matrix and mathematical operations. Registration link here. The QR code in the poster will take you to the same link. Any questions should be forwarded to the Engineering Graduate Society (EGS).

Technical Workshop 3: Technical Writing on November 24 at 1 to 2 p.m. (Facilitator: Holly Corbett). Register here.

Do you know someone who deserves recognition within the graduate student community between May 2019 to 2020? Nominations are due November 23rd, 2020. More details and forms can be found here.



Hello everyone! My name is Tiffany and I am one of the FRC representatives for the faculty of science (along with Pritpal who you met last week). I act as a liaison between the GSA and the Faculty of Science ensuring clear communication between the two groups. Academically, I am a PhD candidate in the Department of Kinesiology where I research molecular biology of skeletal muscle. Personally, I recently got a labradoodle named Beaker (muppet/science pun intended) who is helping me stay active while working from home. Please feel free to reach out to me with any questions or concerns pertaining to the GSA or SciGSA via email ( 

Thank you, Tiffany, for being our ninth feature on this Introduction Series. We have a number of amazing GSA Clubs and Faculty Representatives of the Council that you can connect with! Check the full list on our website



At Council meeting this month, we welcomed two new representatives for Social Sciences, Rida and Sarah! We look forward to all the new fresh ideas for events they are planning for students in the Faculty of Social Science.

‘Free’ Flu vaccines are being offered to our students, on Campus at the Student Wellness Centre! Only one more date left (Nov 5th), more details here.

The McMaster University Black student-athlete review was concluded recently, with a report generated here. The experiences of these students are appalling and we commend them for speaking about their experience. We encourage you to read the report and the recommendations for change across the university. 

What do you think about Graduate Student Space on Campus? The GSA Student Issues Action Committee is interested in your experience. Please fill out this short 2 minute survey if you are interested in using this space. The survey will be open for another week! 

MPSGSA Statement on Union Busting

MPSGSA Statement on Union Busting

The McMaster Political Science Graduate Students’ Association has issued a statement condemning McMaster University’s decision to deny out-of-province TAs union membership, in the midst of a pandemic, urging the administration to sign the Letter of Understanding (LOU) proposed by CUPE 3906.

The McMaster University Political Science Graduate Students’ Association (MPSGSA) unequivocally condemns the University’s decision to expel out-of-province Teaching Assistants (TAs) from the bargaining unit, in the midst of a pandemic. We call on the administration to immediately reverse this unjust, cruel, and damaging action, and to sign the Letter of Understanding (LOU), proposed by CUPE 3906, to reinstate all TAs’ union rights.

McMaster University responsibly cancelled classes in March, due to the global outbreak of COVID-19. Hence, TAs have been mandated to work from home. Furthermore, many TAs have been barred from crossing the Canadian border and/or entering the province, due to travel restrictions, health concerns, and other factors. Rather than compassionately supporting remote workers – during this most difficult and volatile time – the University has nullified their basic union rights to wage protections, protections against unjust termination, protections against harassment and discrimination, and more. As highlighted by CUPE 3906, the administration is not justified, legally or otherwise, to take this callous step.

To build a brighter world, McMaster must make use of its vast resources to further support its workers, instead of engaging in union busting, negatively harming us all as workers. We have already been struggling with wages below the poverty line before the pandemic. The University reputation as a leading academic institution that safeguards the interests of its workers and students is at stake. We expect the administration to make the right decision and sign the proposed LOU to extend the membership of TAs working outside of Ontario for the mandated duration of remote work.

Special General Meeting 2020

The GSA invites all members to our Special General Meeting (SGM) on October 15th at 9:00AM. At our SGM we will present a revised budget for our GSA operations for this academic year given the pandemic as well as what the GSA has done for you over the past few months since our last AGM in April. We will be hosting our AGM virtually via WebEx! Please use the following information to enter the meeting:

Additionally, please find other important documents attached below which will be discussed at the AGM on October 15th:

Recruitment for GSA CRO position

Recruitment for GSA CRO position

The GSA is recruiting for CRO position, if you are interested to be part of the GSA please email by October 1st. The CRO term will end on April, 30th, 2021.

The main role of the position is as follows;

  1. Be responsible for the conduct of election and referendum procedures; and
  2. Present a report to Council on the validity/invalidity of any election/referendum process; and
  3. Chair the AGM 

This role would be well suited for someone with a working knowledge of Roberts rules and an interest in Graduate student life! A small financial honorarium is provided to the CRO for performing their duties. 


From there Council shall elect from within the candidates nominated by the Board, a Chief Returning Officer (CRO) to preside over elections and referenda of the Association.

1. Eligibility Requirements

a. Any Graduate Member is eligible to be the CRO of the Association.

b. A CRO shall not serve as a Faculty Representative, a Member of a Faculty Association executive, or hold another Director, Officer or staff position within the Association at the time of taking up office.


2. Rights and Privileges

a. Act as the official representative of the Association in matters pertaining to elections/referenda; and

b. May delegate any of their powers, duties and functions as they see fit; and

c. Strike an election committee; and

d. Limit campaign expenditures; and

e. Receive nomination forms and publicize elections and/or referenda.


3. Responsibilities

a. Be responsible for the conduct of election and referendum procedures; and

b. Present a report to Council on the validity/invalidity of any election/referendum process; and

c. Perform such other functions as the Council may determine.


4. Decisions

a. Appeals of decisions of the CRO may be made in accordance with Article 4, Section 4.3, in the case of Referenda, and Article 3, Section 3.0 (1) in the case of General Elections.


5. Remunerating the Chief Returning Officer

a. The CRO shall receive an honorarium, the amount of which shall be set by the Board.

b. The CRO shall not receive any monetary or in kind benefits other than the honorarium referred to in Article 1, Section 1.5 (5a), without the consent of Council. This shall not affect the use of Association facilities and funds reasonably associated with the carrying out of their duties.

c. If the CRO does not fulfill the complete term of office, the honorarium shall be prorated for the time served, unless determined otherwise by a two-thirds (2/3) majority vote of Council.


6. Nominating the Chief Returning Officer

a. Candidate(s) for the position of CRO shall be nominated by the Board. In the event that the Board nominates a single candidate, this nomination must be ratified by a majority of voting Councilors at the next Council Meeting.

b. Where there is more than one candidate, an election by secret ballot shall be held.

c. In the event that the CRO’s position is not filled, the President shall nominate a new CRO prior to the next Council meeting.


7. Term

a. The CRO shall hold office until a successor is duly elected following the regulations in the Bylaw.

b. The term of office of the CRO shall be one (1) year: starting on the first (1st) of  May and ending on the (30th) of April the following year.



Welcome to a new academic year, the Fall 2020 semester. For many of you this may consist of teaching, learning, or supporting others in their academic journey. We thank you for your efforts in getting to this point and we believe in you every step of the way. The GSA is here to support you! 

A note about HSR Bus Pass: We have confirmed that students assessed the HSR fee for 2019/2020 academic year will be credited $65 for the months that HSR was free due to the pandemic! You should see this reflected on your student accounts over the next two weeks. We are actively working with the city of Hamilton to continue to bring financial relief for our members.

Have you wanted to learn more about what the GSA does? Do you want to be the connection between the GSA and your Faculty? We would like to announce the vacant positions for Faculty Representatives of the Council (FRC), view the nomination form here. Their role consists of attending Council meetings, representing your faculty, organizing faculty specific events and communication, and voting at Council meetings! Please note the due date is September 21st. Current vacancies:

  • 2 FRC of Social Science 
  • 2 FRC of Humanities
  • 1 FRC of International graduate students (current member of IGSA)

Please send your cover letter and nomination form to Mona at



Check out the Graduate Writing Support Centre for writing services, the thesis writing toolkit, and the writing support bootcamp dates.

International Students: Click on this link to take this anonymous research survey about your experience during COVID-19. 

Are you a returning International TA? The MacPherson Institute is looking for returning International teaching assistants to participate in a 1-hour panel, “Teaching in a Canadian Classroom” on September 10, 12:30-1:30 pm. If you are interested in sharing your TA or sessional experience as an international student/teacher (what did/did not work, what you learned from your role) please fill out this form and we will reach out to you with more information. Panelists will receive a $30 gift card to Amazon, Indigo, or Starbucks for their time.

Seeking to hire a graduate research assistant to start around mid-September, 2020. The project explores blues and hip-hop geographies and their influences on cultures of resistance, both globally and among Asian(workers). All of the work can be done online. Candidate should be highly organized, independent, and responsible. Ideally, the theme is somewhat aligned with your own research interests so that the work may contribute to your own project. Pay is commensurate with your experience in conducting research but will be in the range of $25-$30/hr. Estimated total hours is 30 with potential for more. More details for the responsibilities of this job can be available upon request. 

Please send resume/CV with a 1-page cover letter to Dr. Tommy Wu ( asap and preferably before September 1st, 2020.

PARTICIPANTS NEEDED For Graduate Education Study
I am doctoral candidate looking for current graduate students to complete a survey on their psychosocial and learning experiences. As a participant in this survey, you will be asked to think about and answer questions about your experience as a graduate student.

The survey will take approximately 25 minutes for you to complete and can be completed online. In appreciation of your time, you will be entered in a random draw to win a $25 Amazon gift card.

If you consent, you may also be asked to participate in an individual interview with the researcher to have a more in-depth discussion of your experiences.

If interested in participating, please follow the link to Graduate Education Survey.

If you have any questions, please contact Newsha Ziaian-Ghafari.