Maggie Benston Centre, #2203, 8888 University Dr, Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6

GSS Newsletter – August 2017


Hello grads,

Welcome to the August GSS Newsletter!

We would love to see your faces in our GSS office and lounge (MBC 2205), so please don’t hesitate to drop by our office to share your ideas, questions, and concerns, or just to have a cup of coffee with us.

Please note. during the summer semester, the GSS offices and lounge will be open Monday –Thursday, 9 am – 4 pm.

Announcements from the GSS

Call for Volunteers – Fall Grad Student Orientation 

The GSS is currently seeking volunteers to help at the Fall Grad Student Orientation on September 1st. Training will be provided and all volunteers are invited to the GSS Orientation social in the afternoon. If you are interested in volunteering, and for more information, please contact Camila Miranda at

Family Subsidy and Benefit Plan Bursary

Changes to the Family Subsidy and Benefit Plan Bursary are in effect for the Fall semester. For more information, please access:

GSS Volunteer Opportunities

The GSS is actively seeking volunteers among our members to serve on our Benefit Plan and Governance Committees.  If you have any further questions or are interested in this opportunity, please contact the Executive Director, Pierre Cenerelli at

Graduate Caucus Funding

Did you know that every graduate caucus gets money to spend on almost anything that benefits the grad students in your department? (See the Caucus Funding Spreadsheet for funds available to you for the rest of this fiscal year.)

Playland Tickets

Discounted Playland tickets are available using the GSS discount code. General admission and season pass
discounts for general and junior admission. This code is posted in the GSS Lounge and available by email:

Please note: The GSS info email is only checked during office hours.


Graduate Student Society Open Access Award (GSSOAA)



The Graduate Student Society Open Access Award acknowledges graduate students who have published work in gold open access journals. Our aim is to increase the visibility and prestige of such publications and support the open access movement’s ability to effectively disseminate research findings. GSSOAA is jointly funded and administered by the GSS and the SFU Library and will consist of up to 10 awards at $100 each.

Applications will be accepted from August 21st, 2017 until October 6th, 2017, and the award winners will be announced the week of Oct 23rd, 2017 in conjunction with Open Access Week 2017.

For more information about eligibility criteria and submission, click here.

Peer Support Survey

We’re currently considering the creation of a peer support program that would provide a place for undergraduate and graduate students to receive confidential, one-on-one, drop-in support from their peers. Would you be interested in volunteering or accessing support? Take this short survey and let us know!

Volunteer Opportunity – University Committee for Excellence in Teaching Award

SFU is looking for a graduate student volunteer to sit on the University Committee for Excellence in Teaching Award. The purpose of the Excellence in Teaching Award is to give greater recognition for teaching excellence at SFU. Up to three awards may be made each year, each consisting of a $2,500 prize. The committee is responsible for receiving the nominations for this award and selecting winning recipients. The current student representation on this committee is exclusively drawn from undergraduates. We would like to get a volunteer from our membership to sit on this committee.
The person selected would be appointed for a 1-year term, starting September 1, 2017 – August 31, 2018. Only three meetings are held between mid-September to early-January. The work required of the Committee member consists in reviewing the nomination packages after the deadline and to provide rankings/ratings on the nominees for the final decision meeting.
If you are interested in this opportunity, please send a paragraph or two (less than 200 words) explaining your willingness and qualifications to serve on this committee to our Executive Director (Pierre Cenerelli) at and Chantal Turpin at We need to receive your expression of interest as soon as possible!

Stipended Volunteer Opportunity – GSS Electoral Committee

Are you interested in elections? Do you want to learn more about the electoral process for student societies? Would you like to be more involved in your Graduate Student Society? The GSS Electoral Committee currently has 1 vacancy and is soliciting members.

Electoral Committee is responsible for running the elections and referenda of the GSS, the Electoral Committee is an intense but incredibly rewarding group that is integral to the governance of the GSS. Key times of year (when elections are normally scheduled) are between November-December, and March-April, however by-elections and off-cycle referenda sometimes occur.

This is a stipended position. Each Electoral Officer shall receive a $250 stipend for each electoral undertaking upon completion of duties. If multiple electoral undertakings occur concurrently, Electoral Officers shall each receive a $350 stipend upon completion of duties.

If you are interested in this position, please email your (<200 word) expression of interest by noon on September 5th to, with subject line: APPLICATION ELECTORAL OFFICER.

For more information, click here.

Stipended Volunteer Opportunity – Council Speaker 

Position Description
The GSS is looking to appoint a Speaker for future Council meetings. The Speaker appointment is for one year  and Council must select the Speaker by a 2/3 majority vote. The Speaker will be elected by Council at the August Council Meeting. Speaker must be available for all future council meetings, which are held monthly on Tuesdays from 4:00 pm until 6:00 pm at various SFU campuses. Council meetings are scheduled well in advance, please refer to our website for future meetings.


  • Thorough knowledge of GSS bylaws, Constitution, policies and procedures
  • Working knowledge of GSS services and operations
  • Knowledge of Robert’s rules
  • Communication, Time-management, Collaborative working, Public Speaking, Strategic speaking

How to apply
Submit a short (max. 200 word) statement of intent explaining your interest in the position before 9am on September 5. Make a short presentation at the next Council meeting on Tuesday, September 12, from 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm at the SFU Burnaby Campus MBC 2290/2296.

The Council Speaker shall receive a $50.35 per meeting stipend. If you are interested please email: Mitchell Kovacic, GSS Director of Internal Relations at and Pierre Cenerelli, GSS Executive Director at


GSS Events


Announcements and Events from SFU


Global Community Mentorship Program


The GCMP, formerly known as the International Mentorship Program, was created to help new students of various backgrounds adjust to their new surroundings. New students are matched with a student volunteer, called a mentor. Mentors provide new students with information about resources and opportunities at SFU that might be of interest, invite them to social and cultural events on and off campus, and answer questions about day-to-day life in Canada. The GCMP is currently recruiting graduate mentors. For more information about the program and instructions on how to apply, click here.



Sexual Violence Support


Personal Security Office: Julie Glazier 778-782-8473 /

SFU Campus Security: 778-782-4500 (emergency contact)

SFU Health and Counselling: 778-782-4615



Events and Announcements from External Partners and Organizations



On behalf of Great Lakes Canada and African Great Lakes, Harambecouver is pleased to invite you to it’s opening night for the launch of Vancouver’s first multicultural parade, taking place from the 25t h to 27t h of August 2017. The August 25th opening night will feature an evening of dialogue at the SFU Segal Center, Vancouver.

Drawn from the Swahili word ‘ Harambe ‘, which loosely translates as ‘togetherness’/’caring for each other’, Harambecouver is a three-day event centered around diversity and reconciliation, with a focus on celebrating afro and indigenous ancestry.

Launching the Harambe Working Group, a platform aimed at merging community-engaged research and activism to build advocacy tools, the night will feature notable speakers including: Stephen Lytton, recipient of the Governor General Award; Kombii Nanjalah, recipient of the Humanitarian award bestowed by the president of Kenya; and Dr Henry Daniel, a scholarly performer and Professor at Simon Fraser University. Historicizing Vancouver’s Hogan’s Alley, they will explore the questions of identity and belonging in Canada. The working group, centering the afro-community, will document and work to build a nuanced understanding of the complex matrices of exclusion and belonging that produce structural marginalization.

This event is a gathering of thought leaders, policymakers, and the everyday iconoclast, who are driven to establish a more inclusive and reconciled Canada.

It would be our honor and pleasure if you accept this invitation and join us. We look forward to seeing you! For more information visit

Kindly RSVP here

Adjua Helen Akinwumi – Dialogue Manager, Harambecouver /

Kayode Fatoba – Creative Producer, Harambecouver /

International Development & Diplomacy Internship

To apply, and for more information about UNA-Canada and IDDIP, please visit the website and follow the directions from the IDDIP webpage.

National Student Paper Competition 

Click here for more information.