University of Calgary : Message from the GSA President

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Graduate Studies Calendar 2013-2014 Welcome Message from the GSA President
Message from the GSA President

As a member of the graduate student population and on behalf of the GSA, I am pleased to welcome you to the University of Calgary. It is my wish and hope that you experience not only much academic success, but also that you experience a feeling of community and a sense of the support that is available to you both in and outside your graduate program. It is also my wish for you that you are able to join in and experience everything the Graduate Students’ Association (GSA), the University, and the Calgary community have to offer.

As the University of Calgary moves towards achieving its Eyes High objectives, each of you as graduate students of the University of Calgary, play a pivotal role in the University’s goal to be one of the top five research universities in Canada. I look forward to seeing the strides we will make this year together towards academic and personal excellence.

The GSA knows that this cannot be done alone, and we are here to provide you with resources for academic and holistic support, as listed in the GSA section of the Graduate Calendar.

The GSA strives to improve the quality of experience for all graduate students at the university. Our programs are built around three foundational pillars: Development, Transparency and Engagement.

  1. Development of the GSA’s programs and ability to support its members, as well as individual student development and growth in their academic and career pursuits.
  2. Transparency means open access to GSA policies, and finances, as well as ensuring that students can readily access necessary university policies, supports and services.
  3. Engagement of our members in GSA and university programs and opportunities, consultation of members in policy and program development, and showcasing of top members to the broader community.

As the GSA endeavour to enhance your graduate experience, we know that you are the driver of change. We welcome your input and suggestions.

I would like to take this opportunity to introduce my team, and your newly elected executive team for the 2013-14 Academic Year.

President: Sarah Akierman
VP Academic: Liam Cummings
VP Student Life: Tina Johnston
VP Finance & Services: Colin Martin

The team and I have wonderful plans in the works for this academic year. You will see enhanced DGA support, expansion of our employer liaison program to include internship & mentorship programs, a renovated Last Defence Lounge (LDL), as well as integrated front end service delivery with our co-located office with the Faculty of Graduate Studies on the 2nd floor of MacKimmie Library Tower.

During your time at the University of Calgary, I strongly encourage you to get involved - that starts by signing up for UToday through University Relations, and by reading the weekly GSA News & Views and the Faculty of Graduate Studies GradPost. I challenge you to embrace new opportunities: try something new and pursue your passions. Become part of the GSA and UCalgary community.

On behalf of the entire GSA executive, the GRC and all the GSA staff, welcome to the University of Calgary. We hope you have a wonderful and productive year. For more information, please check out our website at:

Sarah V. Akierman
GSA President 2013-14