June 27, 2023

Advocacy Win: Graduate Student Funding is a top initiative of the UCalgary’s 2023-2030 Strategic Plan 

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The University of Calgary just released its 2023-2030 Ahead of Tomorrow Strategic Plan. The GSA would like to thank many graduate students that provided the GSA and UCalgary with their input to ensure that the UCalgary invests in graduate students and our research.

Graduate students are the driver of UCalgary’s research and innovation; therefore, we deserve proper funding and support. 

Unfortunately, the lack of graduate student funding has been determined as a major critical barrier for graduate students. The GSA advocacy team has consistently brought this up during consultations with both University administration and the provincial and federal governments. 

The GSA applauds the graduate student-focused initiatives in the UCalgary’s new strategic plan.

Specifically, the primary commitment under Focus 2 is to increase average financial support for thesis-based graduate students to highest level in the U15 research universities. 

The inclusion of this aspirational funding commitment was made possible by all of the graduate students who spoke out in support of fair and equitable research funding. The fact that increasing thesis-based students’ financial support is the university’s number one cross-cutting initiative shows the power of our collective voice to affect meaningful change in the lives of our community. 

The GSA will continue to hold the university and the governments accountable for graduate student funding promises in coordination with our partners, including the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations (CASA) and The Alberta Graduate Provincial Advocacy Council (ab-GPAC). We will also continue to work with Departmental Graduate Associations (DGAs) to advocate for increased graduate student funding on a local level. The GSA, at its core, is graduate students coming together to affect positive change in the community.

We would like to thank Saaka Sulemana Saaka, 2022-2023 GSA President, for representing the graduate student voice on the UCalgary’s Strategic Planning Oversight Committee and the UCalgary’s Board of Governors. 

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