Thursday, May 27, 2010

Grad Student Contributions to the Peak

Hi everyone, 
In the aftermath of the Grad Student Referendum where grads almost pulled funding from the Peak, a few of us met with David Proctor, news editor, and Graham Templeton, Opinions Editor of the Peak yesterday.  After a lengthy conversation regarding graduate student representation in the paper, the Peak has agreed to track grad student submissions and has committed to a "pilot project" that will see an increase in grad-relevant and grad-authored content. 
Our ultimate goal is to have a dedicated grad student section and grad issues editor, but this is the first step in that process. In order to demonstrate that grads will be able to provide enough content to support a dedicated section, we need your help. 
Please write an article for the Peak. This can fall under the rubric of any of the sections (ie Humour, Sports, Opinion, Features, News, Arts). Your article can be about anything you'd like--your experience as a grad student, on or off campus challenges that come with being a student (ie funding, childcare, housing, etc), your research, your work as a TA/TM, grad student life (both social and political) get the idea. 
Submit your articles to David Proctor:
Please indicated GRAD STUDENT SUBMISSION in the subject line. 
If possible, please cc
It's really important that we submit a variety of articles so that we can work towards making this campus paper one that better reflects graduate student news and issues. 
If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me. 
In solidarity, 
Jen Scott
Organizer, TSSU

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Reminder; Biology grad caucus meeting tomorrow 3:30 - 4:30 B9242 (agenda attached)

Hello biology grads,

Reminder that the grad caucus is meeting

Tomorrow (Wed, May 26) 3:30 to 4:30 in B9242

There will be refreshments.  We will be discussing important things at this meeting (agenda attached) including beginning to formulate the event plans from May 2010 to 2011.  This is where you can participate in shaping the roll of the caucus in the coming year, and deciding what we should and shouldn't do! 

Also, we still have three open positions for Event Committee Officers.  These officers will play key roles in organizing caucus events.  You will not have to take on the events alone, and officer-level positions are great for your CV and for getting to know people in the department.  I strongly suggest you volunteer for this position.

See you all there.

Brett Favaro
Caucus Chair

Friday, May 21, 2010

Biology Bike-to-Work-Week

Dear all,

Bike to work week is fast approaching: May 31-June 6.

As you may know, the Biology Department is getting *quite* the reputation for having a pretty large turn out every year.  However, the point of Bike-to-work-week is to have NEW people cycle in, who have perhaps never done it before.  So, if you've been bike-curious, now is the time to try!

You don't need to bike every day in the week, nor go all the way up the hill, in order to be on the team.  The point is to make steps towards the challenge.

FREE Pancake Breakfast:
Tuesday, June 1st
Pancake breakfast for cyclists at the Cornerstone Square
Come and get info, bike routes, give you opinion about biking resources on campus, meet people who cycle, enter draws for prizes.

To join the SFU Biology Team, simply sign up here:
This great website allows you to log all of your trips and computes your mileage and carbon offset.

On this website, you'll need to find the SFU Biology team:
Organization: Simon Fraser University
Workplace location: SFU - Burnaby Campus
Team: Biology Department

Jenn Sunday

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Next grad caucus meeting May 26 3:30 - AND requesting volunteers for the biology BBQ

Hello grads

It's time for the Biology graduate caucus meeting.  We have moved the meeting day to Wednesdays to allow for more people to attend, which means our next meeting will be:

BISC grad caucus meeting: Wednesday May 26, 3:30 - 4:30 in B9242

As always there will be refreshments.  This will be an important meeting; we will be drawing for travel awards, and we will be starting to set up a plan for this years' event schedule.  If you would like to be considered for a travel award and have not emailed me yet, please do so prior to the meeting.

In addition, the biology department is requesting volunteers to help with the BBQ next Friday, May 28.  In particular they're looking for folks with the Serving it Right certificate, but all help will be welcome (we need help with everything from grilling, to set up/cleanup, to bartending).  Please drop me a line if you are able to help.

Thanks, and we look forward to seeing you at the meeting.
Brett Favaro
Caucus Chair

Monday, May 17, 2010

Important: Graduate Student Housing Survey

Hello everyone,

As  graduate students many of you know that searching for a place to live in a new and unfamiliar city can be an overwhelming experience. 

In order to help new incoming graduate students that are going through this process, the Biology grad student caucus has put together a short survey for current graduate students to share their thoughts about the neighborhoods that they currently live in. 

We hope that the results from this survey will benefit new grad students by providing them with useful information about how the needs of graduates are met in different neighborhoods. 

Please help out by completing the survey at, which is available starting today until June 20th.

The survey is very short and will take 5-10 minutes to complete. 

Please answer all questions.  All answers are confidential -- no personally identifying information will be used to display results.

Thank you for your participation,

Alex Chubaty
BISC Caucus Webmaster

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The BISC grad caucus is giving away travel awards!

Hi everyone

The biology grad caucus is issuing travel awards!  These are $100 awards drawn at random for the purposes of covering thesis-related travel expenses for travel between September 2009 and August 2010 that has not already been covered by other sources.

If you would like to be considered for a travel award, please email me your full name.  You don't have to do anything else, as it's just a random draw.

We will conduct the draw at the next caucus meeting, which will be Wednesday May 26 at 3:30, in B9242.


Brett Favaro
Caucus Chair

Monday, May 03, 2010

BISC Caucus Election Results

Hello Everyone,

Below are the results of the election from last Friday. Congratulations to all the winners!

    1. Chair - Brett Favaro

    2. Associate Chair - Stephanie Green

    3. Secretary - Matt Huntley

    4. Treasurer - Dhani Kalidasan

    5. Member at Large - Janey Lam

    6. Webmaster - Alex Chubaty

    7. Event Committee Officers (3 positions) -  vacant

    8. GSS Representative - Thomas Unsoeld

    9. TSSU Steward - Brian LaBore

    10. Faculty Mole - Samineh Deheshi

    11. DSC Representative (1 position, 2-year term) - Samantha Franks

    12. DGSC Representative 1-yr term - Jenn
Sunday; 2-yr term - Erica Jeffery

    12. International Students Representative - Muhammad Arshad

We also voted and
passed four constitutional amendments as follows:

1. Lines 122, 123: Clarify that there are two representative positions each for the Departmental Grad Studies Committee (DGSC) and Departmental Scholarship Committee (DSC)
2. Lines 151: Specify that Graduate Council refers to GSS Council
3. Lines 157-162:  Clarify that officer and representative positions are for one-year terms except for DGSC and DSC rep positions which can be for one- or two-year terms, such that there is always a one year overlap between the positions.
4. Lines 185-186: Specify that when there is only one nomination for any given position, not just for the GSS council rep, that position must still be ratified by a majority at a caucus meeting.

Please find the updated constitution at

Thank you
Isabelle Raymond