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Graduate Student Organizing Committee

The Graduate Student Organizing Committee’s primary goal is to formalize, distribute and coordinate student-led initiatives in order to allow more graduate students to participate in departmental service. At the moment, GSOC is comprised of four entities:


By collaborating regularly GSOC hopes to continuously improve each of its constituent groups and better serve the department as a whole. GSOC is organized horizontally: each member has an equal voice in the activities of the collective, and no group enjoys unique privileges for any reason. GSOC is also open to growth should departmental needs require more members. The GSOC will collaborate in three ways:

  • Monthly meetings offer a chance to discuss each group’s projects, opportunities, successes and failures. They are held before each month’s GSC meeting so that the GSC Reps can report on graduate projects, questions, and concerns.
  • Updates will be sent to the graduate student listserv in order to provide new information on policies, opportunities, and upcoming events.
  • Reli Roundtables will be organized by each GSOC member in order to diversify their subject matters and attendees.


Elections will be held regularly to preserve openness and transparency among the organizations. Each GSOC position will be chosen by a general election open to current graduate students; the formation of a new GSOC position will also require graduate student approval by election. In order to link elections with faculty oversight, the GSC Representatives are charged with organizing elections, though nominations and term lengths are determined by each group’s charter.

  • GSC Representatives serve staggered two-year terms, with general elections held every year by the senior (departing) representative. Nominations will be open to the entire graduate student body.
  • The GPSF Senator serves a two-year term with the option of continuing for a third year. The departing senator will be encouraged to seek out and nominate a replacement, but nominations and elections will be open to the entire graduate student body.
  • The Writing Group and the Teaching Committee share a similar election structure: chairs will serve two-year terms (renewable for one additional year), and before their departure the group will nominate up to three members for a general election. The Writing Group and the Teaching Committee may establish their own requirements for becoming a nominee for chair (for example based on attendance or seniority) but new chairs will be elected by the graduate student body as a whole.
  • Development Chair: Beck Henriksen (Religion and Culture)