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Fall 2011

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GSG Update
Johan Bodaski

GSG Year One

Welcome back returning and incoming graduate students. Thank you for your investment in graduate education at Northern Arizona University and specifically for pursing higher education at a time when thoughtful and dynamic leadership is needed most. The NAU Graduate Student Government (GSG) finds its purpose at this intersection as we strive to enhance your graduate experience.

The 2011-12 academic year is an especially exciting time to be part of graduate education at NAU. The excitement is due to the transition of GSG from a campus organization to a student government recognized by the NAU administration. In April 2011, GSG held its first graduate student body elections across the extended and mountain campuses, solidifying itself as a full-fledged student government. The significance of a graduate government is that it is led and sustained by students. By supporting and participating in the government, graduate students can take steps to create the value and opportunities they need and want, benefitting graduate students, NAU, and our surrounding communities.

Vice President for Research Laura Huenneke (lower right) speaks to GSG in October.

GSG brings momentum to graduate education at NAU:

  • Graduate student travel funding for conferences and presentations
  • Strong support of administrative initiatives to implement 100% tuition remission for graduate assistants and electronic theses and dissertations
  • Creation of a grievance policy for graduate students (in progress)
  • Collaboration with the Arizona Students’ Association on state and national issues

GSG brings opportunity to graduate students at NAU:

  • Increased visibility and a strengthened voice
  • Conversations with NAU administrators to supply graduate perspectives
  • Redefining the meaning of a robust community of graduate scholars
  • Creation of new relationships with campus and community organizations
  • Investment in the Flagstaff community
  • Innovation to enhance mountain and extended campus relations
  • Interdisciplinary partnerships and research across the state and disciplines

The Graduate Student Government arrived at this doorstep because of the vision of previous GSO leadership and the efforts of NAU graduate students over the past four years. A special thank-you goes out to last year’s GSO president, Sheena Kauppila, whose leadership brought this organization to a new threshold. The GSG would also like to recognize NAU’s 2009-11 student regent on the Arizona Board of Regents, Jennifer Ginther. Ginther’s commitment to representing the interests of 130,000+ Arizona university system students undoubtedly set the bar for what it means to be a student regent and advocate for student interests.

GSG Meetings

GSG’s fall semester meetings will take place in Ashurst (Bldg. #11) room A109, at 7 pm every other Tuesday from September 6th through November 29th. All interested graduate students are invited. For those who cannot physically attend, each meeting has a meet-me-line: (928) 523-9119.

The 2011-12 Graduate Student Government looks forward to a healthy, fulfilling, and value-driven year.

—Johan Bodaski, GSG President 2011-12