Some past communications & outcomes
More from archives to be added soon.
2008 GSA Council
July 18th, 2008 Meeting Minutes
Speaker- Wednesday meeting
Approximate incoming budget ~3000 (150-200 students at $10/semester, $20/year)
Yearly charges- ~300 Chicano conference, research week (not taken out yet)
Chancellor- matching travel funds? (no response) – give them a round figure to work with
– Suggestion: let Sam, Chancellor, etc. know so both administration and grad students know
– Deadlines for travel needs to be decided on, (rolling deadline… per semester)
- Caps on travel per semester?
– Receipts are needed for food
Orientation pot luck- funding? August 22nd, weekend at Millenium (cost vs. community pool)
– look into space issue
- who to advocate for (SSHA, particular group, etc.)
- meet with Karin Groth
– GSA meetings frequency- once a month, once a semester
- Next one in August, try to meet Karin also
– graduate track accreditation for programs other than ES
- send letters to every department head, graduate chairs
- email Rachel about graduate chairs, lead deans, chancellor, thanks Tom for accreditation
- ask Rachel to organize list
- check list
- put it out at orientation so they know about orientation
– orientation (August 18th) 12:30-1:30
- table at lunch
- workshop series- Friday @ 4
- behind closed doors (Sept. 12)
- Charles Niece
– website: advertise
– get other groups involved
- invite grad group coordinators
- Shakespeare in the park in golden gate park
– 1:45-3:00PM, August 15th – international students
Transportation Committee meeting at UC Merced
TAPS advisory board meeting minutes 05/12/08
Representative Justin Mathews
The entire hour was spent discussing Graduate student parking, here are the highlights:
- Martha Conklin proposed that graduate students be removed from the list of individuals allowed to purchase a restricted parking permit.
- No other individuals objected to this idea, except me.
- I presented data from all sister campuses
- Sister campus policies
- Cal – Hold teaching/TA position get Faculty/Staff
- Davis – If payroll categorizes them as Faculty / Staff via title code; UCD payroll confirms that: researchers, Jr. specialists, and TA are all staff (3276) positions.
- SF – n/a for obvious reasons, only graduate students enrolled.
- Merced – currently pretty lenient… no RA/TA delineation
- Santa Cruz – Special permit that allows parking in Graduate Student lot near Faculty/Staff Lot
- San Diego – A (Faculty), B (Staff)**Graduate**, S (Student)
- Santa Barbara – A (Faculty), B (Staff)**Graduate >=50%**, S (Student)
- Los Angeles – Point system: based on need… +off campus, +children, +distance, +class standing (Graduate: 19pts, Undergraduate: 10 pts.)
- Riverside – Same opportunity at Faculty/Staff
- Irvine – TA = Faculty/staff, 50 % or more = preferred faculty/staff
- I proceeded to voice my concern that Graduate Students are being “picked on” because it is easy to do and that it is unfair to discriminate within the staff category (which we are).
- I pointed out that Graduate Students who hold TA appointments are responsible, just as faculty, to teach, hold office hours, meet with students, etc… These were the exact reasons Martha Conklin gave as support for allowing faculty to have restricted parking.
I made the following suggestions:
- Increase patrols, many unauthorized people park in restricted parking without violation. Without enforcement, permits are useless.
- Limit “Reserved for…” parking. Many of those spots go unused for extended periods of time.
- Delineate between TA and RA… TAs function as faculty and need to be in class just as faculty do, including holding office hours. Rosemary from Payroll services verified that 70 graduate students currently hold TA appointments, and Callale from DGS verified that we currently have 125 graduate students enrolled, therefore (56% of graduate students are TAs).
- Sell permits on a semester basis rather than a year to combat the Fall=RA, Spring=TA problem.
- If you must, raise prices for permits but don’t exclude Graduate Students from be able to purchase restricted permits.
In the end, the advisory board passed the following resolution:
Starting Fall 2008, Graduate Students will need to purchase a Student Parking Pass and park in student parking unless they meet the following criteria:
- Graduate Students who hold a TA appointment that is more than 49% time, will receive a special sticker to place next to their Student Parking Sticker. The supplementary sticker will be issued each semester by TAPS, and TAPS will receive a list of eligible TA’s from their respective school MSOs at the beginning of each academic semester. This supplementary sticker will allow the individual to park in Faculty/Staff lots.
- No discussion of parking permit cost increases were finalized (to the best of my knowledge).
a) Whether to have some permits (in Science & Engineering Lots, Library 1 &2 lots, Lake Lot 1) cost more than permits for other parking spaces.
This is not fair to those in income brackets that are already strapped for cash (grad students). Grad students have to be on campus to perform basic duties that keep this university functioning as a university (research, teaching, undergraduate instruction, and service), just like faculty.
To address the needs of researchers and staff; I believe that there should be a 2 or 3 car, 30 minute loading/unloading zone next to both the engineering and classroom buildings to allow both students and faculty to carry in larger items, and then park as normal. (I really do hate it when I have a huge box of papers graded and can’t park for a minute just to get them into my rolling file.)
I know that many of us Grad students did buy the more costly faculty/staff permit this year, and there is never parking in those lots anyway. I guess they should just sell those to faculty given the limited number of spaces.
Absolutely the parking in the upper lots should cost more than parking where you have to walk up the hill. It should cost a minimum of $80 a month, as you would have to spend that much to enter the lower lots on a daily basis. If the convenience of the upper lot isn’t worth it, then faculty/staff will walk… and it will be good for them.
I think if you price the parking properly, the problem with grad students parking and faculty complaining about it will go away. Most grad students won’t want to pay that sort of money. Use the law of supply and demand to solve the issue.
b) whether to allow Grad students working at 49% time to purchase those more expensive permits in S&E and Library lots, or to open those permitted areas to Faculty/Staff only.
Restricted parking should definitely be made available to those individuals that INSTRUCT. If you have to stand up in front of a class/discussion section/lab you should have the opportunity to buy a restricted permit, full stop.
Let’s examine the clause, ‘whether to consider Grad students working as TAs/RAs as “staff” or “students”‘ Please note the word ‘working’ appears in the text. I sort of had the idea that if you worked for a school you were part of the staff, but maybe faculty does all the work. Pardon the sarcasm, but gee whiz, the real problem is not enough parking (lack of supply) and too many people (lots of demand). Just raise the prices and let economics fix the situation.
Grad students are routinely treated as “mere students” on this campus, this initiative would make that situation even worse. Most grad students’ only income comes from the UC. Other universities commonly refer to graduate students as “Faculty” since they usually teach, conduct research, hold office hours, etc… It is already difficult for grad students to learn how to function as faculty (something that most of us are training to do for the rest of our working years) without additional barriers such as parking hassles.
The two tiered structure of fees sounds fine to me but should include Grad students since they are most likely working in the labs and offices closest to the upper tier parking.
I have not seen any graduate student at the other UCs classified as staff. We are students first and foremost.
I think all staff should be treated equally, there should not be a “faculty only” parking lot. Likewise there should not be a persons with children or persons of advanced age parking lot.
I have been asking around for others’ opinions in the EECS department, and we agree on these:
1. We don’t mind walking from the lake lot, we are young, and walking for sometime everyday is actually good for health.
2. A lot of grad students are actually working in the S&E COB buildings more than 8 hours everyday. In that sense we should not be differentiated from the staffs/faculties.
3. We don’t understand why the growing number of grad students will be something held against us particularly. More staffs/faculties will also be coming into the univ, new undergrads too, the univ has to solve the parking problem one way or another
**we absolutely need more loading spaces for the SE building. I often have more equipment than I can be expected to carry up from the lake lot. I often travel back and forth to Castle to use equipment that UC Merced is dragging their feet on moving to campus. Part of the travel back and forth involves a fair amount of chemicals, samples, and supplies. We need a loading dock or loading spaces for the building separate from facilities management activities. (RR)
it would be nice to add a few more stops to Cattracks so that more of us could ride that to and from campus, rather than take our cars. Maybe they could take a survey and see where we want new stops =) maybe one near G and El Portal? Or at least at the “Bus” stop on G by Raleys. I think the closest stop to that is by millenium sports, which is a bit far.
I think the parking situation is insane, and they should be encouraging bus-riding rather than building so many parking lots (I’m pretty sure more space is taken up here by our cars, rather than the buildings.)
I see grad and undergrad students at Sam Café all the time- we should have a Cattracks stop there! (MLK and 12th).
I think it would also help if Cattracks and the Registrar’s Office talked. I’ve heard a lot of students complain about having to drive when they would take Cattracks if it coordinated with their classes/final exam schedule better.
I think the most important efforts are to encourage bicycle transportation by more bike racks on the busses, either a bike service center or at least flat repair items for sale on campus, an air compressor with an air chuck in an accessible location and a bike friendly attitude from the faculty and staff. I also support the idea of more frequent busses supported by a raise in parking fees.
February 6, 2008
To Dr. Steve Kang
Chancellor University of California Merced
Graduate Student Association Meeting Agenda
- Provide reliable office space to graduate students in all graduate programs that is reasonable and of a workable size.
- Clearly state policies regarding allocation of graduate student office space.
- Work towards providing strong support for graduate students who are negotiating the health care system.
- Establish a system where graduate students can pay for additional health care coverage above and beyond the very basic coverage provided through employment as TAs or GSRs.
- Ensure that access to research instruments is provided for facilitating graduate student education and creating world-class researchers.
- Provide on campus childcare and ensure that is affordable for graduate students.
Long term vs. Short term planning:
Who is advocating for the short-term and long-term interests of the graduate students when it comes to campus planning? How will graduate students be incorporated into the planning process?
How are graduate students being informed of accreditation progress? What will it mean to graduate student degrees when we graduate from a school that is going through the process of accreditation?
Graduate Student Fees: Approximately 2-3% of our income goes to paying annual student fees.
- Provide a mechanism that allows for graduate student input into fee increases that are being considered
Health Insurance Analysis for better Grad Student Health Insurance at UC Merced
Prepared on 3-31-2008 for Meeting with Chancellor Steve Kang by 2008 GSA led by Dorie Beals
|UC Merced||UCLA||UC Santa Cruz||UC Davis||UC Riverside||UC SB||UC I||UC Berkeley|
|Insurance pays to a preferred provider||90%||80%||85%||80%||95%||80%||90%||80%|
|Insurance pays to Out of Network||80%||50%||65%||50%||65%||50%||50%||60%|
|Insurance pays w/o referral to a preferred provider||50%|
|Insurance pays w/o referral to Out of Network||50%|
|Maximum Benefit||$100,000 per year||$500,000 for lifetime||$250,000 per year||$400,000 for lifetime||$250,000 per condition||$300,000 per condition||$500,000 for lifetime||$250,000|
|Out of pocket Maximum with Preferred Provider||$3,000||$1,000||$3,000||$3,000||none?||$4,000||$1,000||$3,000|
|Out of pocket Maximum with Out of Network||$5,000||$5,000||none?||$5,000|
|Prescription Benefit||$2,000||no limit?||no limit||$3,000||$15,000||$5,000||no limit||$2,000|
|Deductible||$25||$50||$25||$0||different for services provided||$15||different for services provided||$25|
|Maximum Benefit||$1,000||$1,000||$1,500||$500||none||50% discounton services, no limit||$1,000|
==GSA Agenda for Friday February 1, 2008
Introductions of GSA officers
- Discuss Budget and guidelines for allocating GSA money
- How much are we getting a semester, how much needs to go to social activities vs. grants for travel for conferences vs. supporting grad student organized events on campus
- Overview of meeting with Dr. Sam Traina
- Assign actions to people
- Volunteer needed to represent UC Merced GSA at the Northern Regional Nominating Commission (meetings will be March 8 and April 5) for selecting a student Regent
- Setup agenda for Chancellor’s meeting on Thursday Feb. 7 from 3-4pm
- Form orientation committee to work with Callale
- Updates from Committee Members
GSA has approximately $7,000 and we are getting around $20 a year from each grad student (about $2,500 for this year). Heather and Dorie will meet separately to work out a draft budget and present it at a future GSA meeting solely for budget discussions.
Currently, GSA has allocated $300 to a grad student organized conference and reimbursed some money for travel by the external chair (Joel).
Office space, a letter will be presented from the graduate students. Eve and Justin are working on a paragraph for the SSHA grad programs. I need a paragraph for people in wet labs and one for people in dry labs from the science and engineering side.
Responsiveness to Graduate Students specifically from:
Orientation Committee to be headed up by Eve and Alyssa with the Grad division liaison Jesus Cisneros
This committee needs assistance form other 1st year grad students to provide input and assistance in revamping orientation. In addition, the committee will be drafting a letter regarding TA training and working with Callale and Sam on getting new Grad students “buddies” (grad students more familiar with UC Merced and Merced)
Fundraising: some ideas for fundraising were tossed around including a formal dinner with mock prizes handed out, a car wash, t-shirts. We could double are budget if we get any of this put together.
Talk to Dave about some outdoor hoops
Each grad program is now assigned a Lead dean in charge of space, TA appointments and getting money for the graduate program. Graduate Dean Sam Traina is solely in charge of academics and is the only dean who can sign off on any academic paperwork.
UC Merced will be awarding Fellowships soon
Research week will be from March 4-7; anyone wanting to put together a poster is encouraged to do so for a prize that Sam is paying for personally.
There will be a Post-Doc boot camp at UCSF towards the end of the year. This is ideally suited for grad students who are 1 year from graduation.
Questions were asked about hosting a web page for grad students. Sam offered the Office of Research server but does not have any staff to get it up and running for web page hosting. There was discussion of having IT do a “how to” webpage seminar and to looking into an increase in the email quota. In addition, web pages may be hosted by individual grad programs but this is dependent upon graduate programs.
By 2008 GSA Council led by Dorie Beals
2008 UC Merced Committees Number of Grad Reps. Representative
Student Fees 2 Ryan Lucas
Referendum Fee 1 Beth Hernandez
Student Affairs 1
Intercultural Task Force 1
Student Union Planning 1 David Gravano
Health Care 1 or 2 Heidi Dietrich
Child Care 1 Rob Root
Chancellor’s Sustainability 2 Nelson Rivera
University conduct 1 Steve Minter
EVC Budget 1 Dorothy Beals
Graduate & Research Council 1 Dorothy Beals
CAPRA 1 Nelson Rivera
Strategic Planning (SAP) 1 Gyami Shrestha
Bookstore Advisory Board 1
Dining Services Advisory Board 1
Student Recreation Advisory Board 1 Sarah Martin?
Transportation and Parking Advisory 1 Beth Hernandez
Information Technology Advisory 1 Henry Pai
Web Portal Advisory 1