AGM Agenda and Attachments

The draft agenda for the Annual General Meeting of the Advanced Degree Students Association is now available. Also available are the results of the referendum on amending the ADSA Constitution and the latest draft of proposed changes to the ADSA Policies and Procedures. The final financial statement will be posted next week, and any other materials will be available at the meeting, which will be from 11am to noon on Thursday, April 3rd, in Boardroom 1 at TST.

February Minutes, Revised Duties for Board Members

The minutes for the February Board meeting are now available, along with the results of the referendum on amending the constitution, which was successful. In response, at today’s meeting the Board approved revisions to the duties for Board members. The changes still need to be ratified at the AGM in two weeks, but the proposed duties are listed below for anyone who is interested in running for a position on the Board next year and would like to see what each position entails. The call for nominations will go out on the mailing list tomorrow morning.

D.  Duties of ADSA Board Members

D.1 President

D.1.1 Will chair all ADSA meetings.

D.1.2 Will set the agenda, date, time, and location for meetings in consultation with the Board.

D.1.3 Will appoint Board members to sit on TST committees with student representation in accordance with these Policies and Procedures.

D.1.4 Will be the principal liaison between the ADSA and the TST Director, communicating regularly to relay student questions and concerns.

D.1.5 Will sit on the TST Board of Trustees as an invited guest, attending all regular meetings (normally 4/year), briefing the ADSA Board on issues affecting students, and applying to present student feedback to the TST Board.

D.1.6 Will attend meetings of the Academic, Advanced Degree, or Graduate Councils as needed.

D.1.7 Will welcome new students and introduce them to the ADSA and its activities at TST’s annual orientation.

D.1.8 May have cheque-signing authority along with the Treasurer.

D.1.9 Will summarize the ADSA’s past year of activities at the AGM and prepare a report to be posted online and shared with TST.

D.2 Vice-President External

D.2.1 Will be the principal liaison between the ADSA and the University of Toronto student unions, meeting with TST’s UTSU representative (if any) twice a year, meeting with a representative from the UTGSU twice a year, and attending UTSU and UTGSU General Meetings, normally in the fall term.

D.2.1 Will meet with University of Toronto administration and staff as needed to better understand and improve TST student access to university services.

D.2.2 Will work with the VP Internal and other Board members to inform all TST students about their representation in university student politics and access to university services.

D.2.4 Will be the principal liaison between the ADSA and students at affiliated schools, especially ICS.

D.2.5 Will attend meetings of the Board of Trustees or Academic Council as needed.

D.2.6 Will chair ADSA meetings in the absence of the President.

D2.7 Will be the parliamentarian and assist in procedural disputes.

D.3 Vice-President Academic

D.3.1 Will be the principal liaison between the ADSA and the TST Director of Graduate Studies.

D.3.2 Will sit on the Academic Council, attending all regular meetings (normally 2-4/year), reporting matters discussed to the ADSA for input and relaying student feedback back to Academic Council.

D.3.3 Will sit on or attend meetings of the Advanced Degree or Graduate Councils as needed, reporting matters discussed to the ADSA for input and relaying student feedback back to the Council.

D.3.4 Will meet with ADC, Department, and Program representatives (including if possible outgoing representatives) after each election to schedule service on the Advanced Degree or Graduate Councils, orient new members, and help ensure continuity in representation.

D.3.5 Will assist the Department and Program representatives and other Board members in gaining an understanding of the issues faced by students through polls, public meetings, and social media.

D.4 Vice-President Internal

D.4.1 Will work with the other college representatives to build relationships between colleges and improve communication with college student associations, councils, and leaders.

D.4.2 Will help inform basic degree students about their representation on the TST Academic and Basic Degree Councils, their right to run for a seat on the UTSU Board of Directors, and their access to university services.

D.4.3 Will meet with the leaders of all the Basic Degree Student Associations once a year, either individually or collectively, with the relevant college representatives, TST’s UTSU rep (if any), and other Board members as needed.

D.4.4 Will sit on the Academic Council when the second student seat is not claimed by a basic degree student, attending all regular meetings (normally 2-4/year), relaying basic degree student concerns, and supplementing the VP Academic’s advocacy for advanced degree students.

D.4.5 Will attend meetings of the Academic, Advanced Degree, or Graduate Councils as needed.

D.4.6 Will help oversee elections, recommending Board members to serve as the Chief Returning Officer and convening meetings of students in a particular college or department as necessary.

D.5 Vice-President Conferences

D.5.1 Will sit on the Conferences and Lectures Committee, attending all regular meetings (normally 2-4/year), reporting matters discussed to the ADSA for input and relaying student feedback back to the Conferences and Lectures Committee.

D.5.2 Will begin and lead planning for an ADSA conference each year, setting and announcing the conference date, call for papers, and submission deadline in consultation with the Board; accepting paper and panel proposals; and preparing them for blind review by a small group of Board members.

D.5.3 Will work with the Treasurer to apply for conference funding, prepare a budget for the conference, and track conference expenses; may also have cheque-signing authority.

D.5.4 Will share responsibility for other conference tasks with all Board members.

D.6 Treasurer

D.6.1 Will be responsible for ADSA bank account(s) and have cheque-signing authority.

D.6.2 Will record all expenditures and income.

D.6.3 Will prepare a brief financial report for every Board meeting (report may be oral).

D.6.4 Will prepare a financial statement for the year just completed and a preliminary projected budget for the following year at the AGM in April.

D.6.5 Will present a revised budget for approval at the November Board meeting.

D.6.6 Will prepare a detailed financial statement for the first meeting of the ADSA Board at the beginning of the academic year.

D.6.7 Will ensure the annual student levy is collected from member colleges, TST, and affiliated schools as applicable.

D.6.8 Will attend meetings of the Conferences and Lectures Committee in place of the VP Conferences as needed.

D.6.9 Will announce and accept applications for travel bursaries according to criteria approved by the Board.

D.7 Secretary

D.7.1 Will confirm the date, time, location, and agenda for all meetings is publicly announced in advance.

D.7.2 Will record the minutes for all ADSA meetings.

D.7.3 Will present the minutes of each meeting for approval at the next meeting.D.7.4 Will archive all approved ADSA agendas, budgets, minutes, and reports online.

D.7.6 Will attend meetings of the Library Committee in place of the Library Committee representative as needed.

D.7.7 Will confirm access to the TST Governance Blackboard and control of official ADSA websites, social media, and e-mail accounts is transferred between outgoing and incoming Executives.

D.8 College Representatives

D.8.1 Will report issues pertaining to AD students at their college at each ADSA meeting.

D.8.2 Will post relevant college announcements on the ADSA website or social media page, such as upcoming events, student accomplishments, publications, job openings, dissertation defences, etc.

D.8.3 Will represent the ADSA at their college orientation.

D.8.4 Will be the principal liaison between their college and the ADSA.

D.8.5 Will meet with members of their college’s student association(s) or council(s) individually or with the VP Internal as needed.

D.9 Department and Program Representatives

D.9.1 Will report issues pertaining to AD students in their department or program at each ADSA meeting.

D.9.2 Will represent student concerns in meetings pertaining to their department or program. This may require gaining an understanding of the issues faced by students in their department or program through polls, public meetings, and social media.

D.9.3 Will be the principal liaison between the ADSA and the chair of the department or director of the program, as applicable.

D.9.4 Will share responsibility for sitting on the Advanced Degree or Graduate Councils with the VP Academic and other Department and Program representatives, and when sitting, will attend all regular meetings (normally 8/year), report matters discussed to the ADSA Board for input, and relay student feedback back to the Councils.

D.10 Library Committee Representative

D.10.1 Will be the advanced degree student representative on the Library Committee, attending all regular meetings (normally 4/year) and participating in listserv discussions.

D.10.2 Will report important information, debates, and decisions from Library Committee meetings to the ADSA Board for student input.

D.10.3 Will ensure student concerns about library services and collections are represented to the Library Committee.

Winter Travel Bursaries and Fall Travel Reports

This semester we have three bursaries available at $200 each for current AD students presenting at conferences outside of Ontario before July 31st, 2014.

To apply for a bursary please email the following information by Monday, March 17th:

1) Name
2) College and program
3) Date, name, and location of the conference
4) Title of paper accepted by conference
5) Names and amounts of any other scholarships or bursaries

Yesterday the ADSA Board agreed recipients of a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council Canada Graduate Scholarship or Doctoral Fellowship, and/or any specific travel funding from other sources would not be eligible for travel bursaries this term.

Eligible names will be drawn at random at the Board meeting on March 20th and winners will be notified shortly thereafter. Recipients will also be asked to write a brief summary of their conference presentation experience to be posted online. Reports from the winners of the fall term travel bursaries are below.

Travel Bursary Tales, Fall 2013

Andrew Witt

I wanted to begin by thanking the ADSA for providing a traveling bursary for this past year’s SBL meeting in Baltimore. The funds were put to good use, and greatly helped in making my stay in Baltimore that much less stressful. At the meeting I had a wonderful time! My presentation was on Saturday afternoon, the first day of the conference, and was even the first paper given at my session. Lucky time slot!

Bill Bellinger, of Baylor University, was the moderator during my session, and I was followed by a handful of other presenters, a mix of both students and professors. It is always hard to predict what kinds of questions might arise afterwards, but I felt like the audience took it easy on me. I spoke with Judith Newman (Emmanuel College) later that evening, and she reminded me that the success of a presentation shouldn’t be measured by the immediate questions at the event, since ideas could take root and raise questions people might have in the weeks and months afterwards. I took this as good, seasoned advice.

In terms of the presentation, my time slot enabled me to speak to more people than what usually happens. In fact, the room was quite packed, with approximately 50 people. This was very encouraging, and from my end of things, I think the presentation went fairly well. I was able to make some great contacts this year with scholars in my field, and look forward to future meetings and conferences. While these types of events may seem intimidating, my experience has always been positive. Remember that if your proposal is accepted it means that someone with credentials thinks you have something to add to the discussion. At the very least, it allows your name to enter into the discussion in your field. And, if you do well, it may mean a more broader readership of your dissertation, since people actually know your name. So, I recommend taking the chance and taking part in an AAR/SBL meeting. They also have regional meetings which are more intimate and much less intimidating.

Bruce Worthington

This year’s Society of Biblical Literature Annual Meeting was made more affordable and certainly more comfortable due to the gracious support of the Advanced Degree Student Association. Thanks to the travel grant, I was able to afford a nice, clean hotel room to share with a colleague, surprisingly close to the venue. This allowed me to focus and prepare better for my presentation.

Given the fact that my presentation (Ideological Criticism section, Monday 4pm) ran up against the likes of James Dunn, John Kloppenborg, and Judith Butler, it was no surprise that only a handful of people attended (thanks to Ann Jervis for her attendance and boost of confidence). Sparse attendance aside, the questions and critique were quite helpful, and a small publishing project has come out of it. Props to ADSA for helping out!

Chris Zeichman

2013 marked my third trip to the annual SBL/AAR meeting and second time presenting there. The 2013 meeting at Baltimore was a much more relaxing trip than the previous year at Chicago, probably due to a combination of a more welcoming venue, a greater number of friends presenting, and simply more personal experience. I was thrilled my paper on recent readings of sexuality in The Healing of the Centurion’s Slave (Matt 8:5-13/Luke 7:1-10) was accepted to one of my favourite sections “Reading, Theory, and the Bible.” I was even more excited that two senior scholars whose work I admired were presenting alongside me. The presentation itself went quite well: thanks in part to the fact that my paper was brief in comparison to other presenters, I had quite a bit of time for discussion. An expanded version of the presentation will be found in a forthcoming volume of The Bible and Critical Theory. Many thanks to the ADSA for making this possible!