The proceedings from the GSC meeting on 2006-05-03
GSC Agenda: May 3, 2006: 6:00-8:00 – FOOD @ 5:45!
Graduate Community Center – Nairobi Room
Quorum for this meeting is seven voting members.
1. 5:45 FOOD (thanks Maria!)
2. 6:00 Welcome with Introductions (Tom)
3. 6:05 VPGE/VP-DOR Search Committee Talk (Jenny/Cullen)
- Brief Presentation by Diversity Committee
- Brief Presentation by Healthcare Committee
- Review VPGE handout
- Address questions committee members have concerning VPGE or VP-DOR
- VP-DOR: The Vice Provost and Dean of Research and his/her office support
the research enterprise at Stanford. The Vice Provost is responsible for
research policy promulgation and oversight; representation of Stanford and
its research interests to internal and external constituencies; and
oversight of the programs of the independent laboratories, centers and
- VPGE: The new position, Vice Provost for Graduate Education, and his/her
office will be responsible for the recommendation and promulgation of
policies that apply to graduate and postdoctoral study; oversight of
recruitment for a diverse graduate student population as well as oversight
of new programs and initiatives that support graduate education at Stanford.
4. 6:45 Announcements (Tom)
i. Minutes from 4/26 (thanks Tracy)
ii. Grad Night at Flicks = FUN! (thanks Zhuo, Paul, and Jenny)
iii. Remember – GSC Transition Event: May 14th, 9AM-7PM (Sunday)
Reminder – Please send in transition documents!
iv. Creator of Ph.D. Comics Jorge Cham speaking 5/5/06
5. 6:50 Funding (Adam)
- Korean Student Association at Stanford University
- Stanford Canadian Club
- Persian Students Association
6. 7:00 Food Czar and Webmaster Bonuses (Tracy)
- “I recommend these two for bonuses not because they volunteered to do
things…many have done this…but because they signed up for defined jobs
that are necessary for the function of the entire GSC and performed above
and beyond the descriptions for these jobs.”
7. 7:05 ASSU Speakers Bureau Budget Modification (Adam/Justin)
- Thanks for the VIP tickets Speakers Bureau! You rock!
- Review budget modification and vote
8. 7:10 Budget Approval (Stephen/Tom/Jenny/Adam/Justin)
- Review and approve a budget for 2006-07
9. 7:15 New Members Swearing In (Tom)
- Raise your right hands!
10. 7:20 New Officer Elections (Tom)
- We’ll elect positions in the order listed below.
- Uncontested position folks will talk for 60 seconds or LESS.
- Where more than one person is running, we’ll have each candidate speak for
2 minutes and then allow for up to 5 minutes Q&A from the audience.
- We’ll officially approve the elections the following week, May 10th.
2006-07 GSC Officer Candidates
- Co-Chairs: Jenny Allen & Paul Gurney
- Financial Officer: Maxim Afanasyev/Jeff Laretto (???)
- Deputy Financial Officer: Jeff Laretto/Maxim Afanasyev (???)
- Funding Committee Chair: Adam Beberg
- Deputy Funding Committee Chair: Jeff Laretto
- Programming Co-Coordinator: Fen Zhao & Maxim Afanasyev
- PR Coordinator: Dorotha Ocker, Shireen Barday, Rae Woods
- Webmaster: Paul Gurney
- Tax Coordinator: Maxim Afanasyev, Yana Hoy
- FLiCKS Coordinator: Juan Carlos Cancino
- Diversity Advocacy Committee Chair: Cullen Buie
- Healthcare Advocacy Committee Chair: Kristina Keating (Co?)
- Housing Advocacy Committee Chair: Yana Hoy
- Stipends Advocacy Committee Chair: Yana Hoy, George Bloom
- Graduate Student Survey: Rebecca Kaplan
- Bulletin Coordinator(s):
- Food Czar(s):
- Thanksgiving Dinner Coordinator:
- Parking and Transportation Board Chair:
NOTE: Only the Chair and Financial Officer must be one of the 15 elected
11. 7:55 New Business
12. 8:00 Adjourn GSC Meeting & SMILE FOR THE CAMERA
M. R. Beasley (VPGE Committee)
Tom Kenny (VPGE Committee)
Stephanie Kalfayan (VPGE Committee)
Stephan Graham (VPGE Committee)
Hannah Valentine (VPGE Committee)
Korean Student Association – End of the year party – Korean dinner with small gifts for people who are graduating.
Adam – Any questions? [none]. We recommend $900.
Jenny – Any objections? [none] Passes by consensus.
Canadians – Victoria Day BBQ on May 20th.
Adam – Any questions? [none]
Jenny – Any objections? [none] Passes by consensus.
Persian – Spring quarter party – dance lesson – DJ Persian music. Can I make a last minute change? Can we add $75 for dance instructions?
Adam – That is honoraria?
Persian – I think it is training material…it is an hour dance lesson.
Adam – That is honoraria. That would make the total $645. Are there any questions about the event? [not really]
Jenny – Are there any objections? [none] Passes by consensus.
VPGE/VP-DOR Search Committee
M. Beasley – We do want to hear what you have to say on both sides (VPGE & DOR). Also the CGE has certainly had an impact, but the document is not a roadmap or a blueprint. It is a set of ideas. All the things in the document will not be done, and some things that are not in the document may get done. You can impact what is implemented.
Cullen – Alice Lincoln and John Davis formed the DC in May of 2004. They wanted to work through the GSC to increase representation of women and underrepresented minorities in the Stanford graduate community.
While the Stanford undergrad pop is famously diverse, the Stanford graduate population is greatly lacking in diversity. The administration has a strong push to increase undergraduate pop and faculty pop, but grad diversity is not being addressed. There is a similar decline in grad pop of women.
The national trends in underrepresented minorities earning graduate degrees is continuing to increase, while the Stanford trend is declining. The great decline began in 1994 with the dissolution of the centralized graduate office. We proposed the VPGE idea in the winter of 2004 to the Provost and President. During Spring 2004, we spoke with all of the Deans of schools and over 34 faculty members to discuss the VPGE model. In the fall of 2005, the CGE recommended a similar model.
While our group is focused on diversity, the DC spawned out of the GSC, which is concerned with advocating for all aspects of graduate education. Because of this, we felt it is necessary for this position to address all aspects of graduate life.
The model proposed in the handout was developed initially by the DC, but has been amended and built upon by the entire GSC. We envision this office as being very broad in scope and proactive.
Particular questions we would like you to ask potential candidates:
What is the composition of your dept/school with respect to racial and gender diversity? [are they even aware? ]
What are your ideas for the many issues affecting the grad pop, i.e. stipends, transportation, healthcare, childcare, etc.? [they need to be willing to work with grad students on all these issues…we have been thinking about these issues for years and have ideas]
What do you think is the scope/size of the VPGE office? [the first person in this position is really going to define it for the future.]
Tom Kenny – If the students had to forecast, what is the big next challenge?
Paul – I think housing is starting to get scary. There seems to be a lot of construction of high-cost housing options on campus, but the low-cost options are disappearing. The problem is not the limited number of spaces, but the increased cost of housing on campus.
Tom – Also, off-campus rents are beginning to creep up again. I don’t know if they will reach ’99 – ’00 levels, but we should keep an eye on it. Also, the advisor-student relationship…the quality of mentoring is, um, variable.
Tracy – Please excuse the candor, but my initial response to your question is – How dare you ask for more when you can’t even eat what is already on your plate?
Tom Kenny – We have heard that before and believe me, I agree that the issues we have already addressed are very important.
M. Beasley – I am curious to whether you have any questions with the post-docs? Is there any connections?
Jenny- Historically there hasn’t been a connection. We have met with them recently to work on healthcare and childcare issues.
M. Beasley – Are there any issues high on your radar for the research side of the problem?
Tracy- I am concerned that students are protected when their advisor, possibly, pushes forward false data. I am sure Stanford protects the advisor, but if the advisor is pressuring the student to report false data…is the student protected?
M. Beasley – There are very clear processes outlined for scientific misconduct.
Josh – The VPGE is going to get very different opinions from each grad student…Law v science v eng v business, etc. There is almost a misnomer of ‘a graduate student experience’. There is not a lot of cross-communication and breaking the communication barrier down is the first thing that needs to occur.
Adam – Funding is fundamental to the DOR role. Advocate for research funding in general.
M. Beasley – Artie Beinenstock will assume for 2 yrs a role as an interface with Washington and the Federal gov’t. He was very interested in having this role, but it will only be for 2 yrs.
Tom – 1) DOR – we work in a large lab with equipment shared btw many groups and even users from outside of Stanford. The time allotted to Stanford students tends to be off-hours like midnight to 4 am Sunday mornings. It makes it difficult for Stanford students to get their work done.
M. Beasley – This is very important. The people who are paying for those facilities (Washington) like the fact that outside people are using the facilities. It is a selling point to get the equipment funded.
Tom – 2) interdisciplinary work – because I do ID work, I have 3 advisors and am on the fringes of each of these groups. I don’t have a main person to interact with or a main lab with space for me.
Stephen Graham – The schools are all having trouble dealing with this problem. Should the VPGE have some responsibility in this area?
Tom – I don’t know if it matters who (DOR or VPGE) had the responsibility, but someone needs to be protecting these students.
Hannah Valentine – The person in the VPGE position will need to have a particular passion and it may not be possible to find a person who has a passion for all of these things.
Cullen – Obviously, diversity is my top thing. Though diversity is our focus, we tried to develop a model where the VPGE has Deans who can look at each of these issues…someone solely for diversity, someone solely for academic issues, someone solely for quality of life issues. The VPGE should be able to advocate on all of these issues and have a staff that is passionate for each issue.
M. Beasley – Do these problems have to be solved by the VPGE, or just have to be solved?
Cullen – We think the problems need to be addressed by someone in a top position. We already have diversity people in lower positions and they have no power. Someone near the Pres and Prov level needs to be speaking in their ears all the time.
Hannah Valentine – I worry that even in the DC model, the Dean of Diversity position is already marginalized.
Tom Kenny – I don’t think you need someone lying awake at night worrying about developing interdisc work at Stanford. This is going to happen. But, I think someone needs to be lying awake at night worrying about diversity at Stanford.
M. Beasley – But, there are some people who would say…if you move the diversity position too high, then the functionality may not trickle down to the departments.
Kristina – Right now, diversity is being approached very departmentally. No one seems to be looking at diversity for the University as a whole.
Tracy – Please encourage the Pres and Provost to give the VPGE the funding to offer resources for depts. willing to implement programs. No matter who is in the VPGE position, their effectiveness will be dependent upon support from the Pres and Provost.
Tom – The VPUE is very well funded, but there are more grad students than undergrads so it would seem logical to give the VPUE at least as much funding.
Matt – Back to the passion question – every aspect of my life, career development, housing costs, healthcare, daycare, even the diversity of my neighborhood, are dependent upon the university. Even if my dept is concerned with diversity, if other depts aren’t concerned then I notice it in my neighborhood. It is all connected. If my stipend doesn’t increase, but my healthcare and housing costs do, then I feel it at home.
M. Beasley – If I could offer a little caution…the place needs to work, but the people who are in charge don’t have control of all the strings they need to make everything come together.
Tom – The VPGE may not have control, but they should be in contact, close contact, with the people who are.
Tom Kenny – I agree that if we knew, for example, that the cost of living goes up 6%, then we would like to increase stipend rates as well.
Maria – This position should have a general interest in grad student life. They may not have all the strings, but they need to be aware of what problems exist. The VPGE needs to be so interested in the grad student educational experience that they know what issues exist so that when the strings do become available, they can take advantage of it. There are many different aspects of grad life and the VPGE needs to keep track of them all and their impact on the students.
Alex – I don’t think we want a VPGE who is happy with Stanford graduate life. We want someone who is deeply unsatisfied.
Steve Graham – Our charge is to basically ID some candidates, but we have spoken to many stake-holders in this process. In addition to making recommendations for candidates, we will put forward recommendations on the scope of the position.
M. Beasley – There have been many concerns that have come forth through our discussions.
Tom – There was one change to the minutes…I was quoted as saying ‘Financial Chair’, but that should be ‘Funding Chair’. Are there any objections to the 04-26 minutes? [none] They pass by consensus.
Adam – The outgoing GSC members need to clean up the office for the new members.
Tom – We have a proposal from Tracy to give bonuses to the Food Czar and the Webmaster. Are there any objections? [none] Both bonuses pass by consensus.
Tom – The Speakers Bureau has gotten their upcoming speaker, Kurzweil, to come for free. They would like to move $$ from honoraria into marketing for the event. All of the funding is being shuffled around for the same event…from honoraria into marketing, events space, etc. All in favor? Objecting? Abstaining? [12,0,0]
The next is SOCA. It is a transfer from reserves into equipment, buy we aren’t sure about the details. There wasn’t any discussion about it in the senate. Are there any objections to tabling this? [none] It will be the first vote for next year’s GSC.
Nothing has changed since last week on the 2006-2007 ASSU Operating Budget. Are there any questions? [none] All in favor? Opposed? Abstaining? [12,0,0] The budget for next year passes.
New Members Swearing In
Jenny Allen(Law), Rebecca Kaplan(Business), George Bloom(Hum), Cullen Buie(Eng), Maxim Afanasyer(At-L), Paul Gurney(Eng), Zhuo Huang(SocSci), Kristina Keating(SES), Jeff Laretto(At-L), Dirk England(Nat Sci), Matt Andrews(Ed), Adam Beberg(At-L)
Co-Chairs – Jenny and Paul
Financial Officer – Jeff Laretto
Deputy Financial Officer – Maxim Afanasyer
Funding Committee Chair – Adam Beberg
Deputy Funding Committee Chair – Jeff Laretto
Programming Co-Coordinator – Fen and Maxim
Diversity Advocacy Committee Chair
Healthcare Advocacy Committee Chair
Housing Advocacy Committee Chair
Stipends Advocacy Committee Chair
Graduate Student Survey
Thanksgiving Dinner Coordinator
Parking and Transportation Board Chair
Adam – We are very short-staffed for next year. We need to do more publicity to bring in more students.