Each spring, the Executive members of the UMGSA are decided in the annual General Election. Every graduate student enrolled at the University of Manitoba gets to vote, and candidates campaign on issues that affect graduate student life.
The Elections Committee thank all candidates and members of the UMGSA for their support and orderly conduct during the electioneering.Ademola Adesola
Posted here are the preliminary results of the UMGSA General Elections
held last week. The Elections Committee enjoins candidates and members of the Association to forward any complaints and/or appeals to the Committee before these results are finalized as required by the UMGSA Election and Referendum Policy and Procedure Manual.
Given the tie between the two candidates for the position of Vice President Services & Support, there will be a run-off election. This is consistent with Article XXXIII of the UMGSA Election and Referendum
Policy and Procedure Manual, which specifies that in the event of a tie between two candidates competing for the same Executive position a run-off election will be conducted “within 14 days of the final recount of the ballots of the General Election.”
The Elections Committee will soon announce a date for the conduct of the run-off election. Please watch out for the announcement.
It is my pleasure to announce that the following graduate students have been nominated to run for UMGSA Executive positions. They have been cleared to vie for the advertised positions having met the nomination requirements outlined in the Election and Referendum Policy.Ademola Adesola, UMGSA Chief Returning Officer
President: Carl Neumann
I am currently serving my 2nd term as UMGSA President. I serve on more than 35 Councils, Boards, and Committees at the UofM. I also chair two UMGSA committees, including the Executive Committee. I was previously the Philosophy Representative on the UMGSA Council for two years, and chaired the UMGSA’s Internal Development and Review Subcommittee that oversaw the official review of the UMGSA Executives for 2015-2016. Accordingly, I have exceptional practical and interpersonal experience within the Association, as well as with the University’s administration. Even before becoming President, I took the initiative to propose numerous Council motions which have improved the accountability and functioning of the Association.
I am continuing to pursue my MA in Philosophy. I have repeatedly served as a Teaching Assistant for courses that include Business Ethics and Environmental Ethics. Prior to last year, I served as the Vice-President and then the President of the Ethics Center Students’ Association.
Four years ago, I was an Executive-at-Large with the Winnipeg Teachers’ Association, which has given me extremely valuable practical experience in how different but similar organizations and their executives organize and manage their affairs. While completing my undergraduate degree at Carleton University, I served as a student Senator for three years and a Council Representative for two years. I served on all of that Association’s committees, and was elected Chairperson to conduct all administrative duties for four of them.
- Complete the development of the UMGSA’s first strategic plan.
- Strengthen the representation of all faculties within the UMGSA.
- Increase communication across all campuses.
- Continue to boost inclusion, support, sustainability, and good governance.
Vice-President Finance & Administration: Cody Ross
My name is Cody Ross and I am a PhD candidate in the Department of Geological Sciences. I have also completed a MSc in Geological Sciences and a B.Sc. (Honours) in Environmental Sciences, both at the University of Manitoba.
During 2018/2019 I have served UofM graduate students as the Vice President Internal of the UMGSA. As VPI, I am the chairperson of the UMGSA Finance Committee and the Bylaws and Policy Committee. During my executive term, I have actively pursued changes to the UMGSA Bylaws and the Governance and Operations Manual with the intent of making UMGSA operations more economical and transparent. Prior to being VPI, I was active in the UMGSA as a councilor from the department of Geological Sciences. In addition to involvement with the UMGSA, I am currently an executive member of the Canadian Young Hydrological Society and am the Canadian Geophysical Union Hydrology Section student representative.
As Vice President Finance and Administration, I will continue making the UMGSA as effective as possible. With increasing financial stress on students and student associations, I want to ensure that students receive the maximum benefit from the UMGSA for the coming year and that the services provided by the UMGSA are sustainable into the future. Additionally, I will create a functional link between the UMGSA conference grants and UMGSA profiles programs to highlight student research and increase visibility for graduate students at the UofM. It would be my privilege to continue advocating for graduate students at the University of Manitoba and I am excited to contribute meaningful work throughout the 2019/2020 Executive term.
Vice-President Services & Support: Okechukwu Efobi
I am Okechukwu Efobi, a PhD candidate in Electrical and Computer Engineering. My undergraduate education was at the University of Nigeria. I spent some years working as an academic support staff at a university and subsequently as an engineer at a utility company, both in Nigeria. In 2014, thanks to a Japanese Government scholarship, I travelled to Japan to study for a Master’s degree at Yokohama National University.
My background includes working, from an early age, in my family business, both in junior and supervisory roles. I have also worked as an executive member in associations and volunteered in several organizations.
These experiences have contributed in my penchant for identifying problems and seeking solutions to them. On successful election as the UMGSA Vice President Services and Support, I would seek the collaboration of UMSU and other stakeholders to improve Winnipeg Transit services to both campuses. In addition, I would continue as well as improve the networking, social, sports, and orientation events organized by the UMGSA. My tenure will be marked by effective representation of the interests of UMGSA members in matters that affect their graduate student life.
Vice-President Services & Support: Eric Gagnon
My name is Eric Gagnon, and I am a first year MA student in the Department of Political Studies. Prior to this, I completed a Bachelor of Arts (Hons) in Political Studies with First Class Honours and a Bachelor of Arts (General) with Distinction in Philosophy and Sociology at the University of Manitoba. My research interests fall within the field of political philosophy, with a particular focus on the potential intersections between liberalism and Indigenous justice.
During my time at the University of Manitoba, I have been heavily involved in student affairs. While I was an undergraduate, I was the Director of Finance for the Undergraduate Political Studies Student Association (UPSSA) and the Assistant Social Programmer for the Arts Student Body Council (ASBC). Currently, I am the UMGSA Co-Councillor for the Student Association of Masters of Politics and Public Administration (SAMPA) and the Graduate Student Representative for ASBC. I am also a member of the UMGSA Bylaws Committee, Finance Committee, Executive Review Sub-Committee, and the Indigenous Ad Hoc Committee.
Outside of university, I am also involved in the affairs of my home community of Sainte-Agathe. As a member of the Sainte-Agathe Community Development Inc. (CDI), I am the chairperson of the subcommittee in charge of organizing the Festival d’Été Cheyenne Summer Festival, the largest community festival in the municipality of Ritchot. I also enjoy volunteering my time as a music teacher and jam session supervisor at the school in Sainte-Agathe.
If elected as the UMGSA Vice President Services and Support, I will:
- Strive to develop more event partnerships with departmental student bodies. These partnerships would provide more in-kind support for departmental student bodies, improve event attendance records, encourage collaboration between departments, and introduce new and fresh ideas for events.
- Make UMGSA events more accessible to all grad students by including more family and child friendly events into our programming. By introducing child-minding services at our events, as well as more alcohol-free programming, we can ensure that more grad students are able to attend and be involved with the UMGSA community.
- Create a more solid working relationship with the University of Manitoba Students’ Union (UMSU). By increasing our collaboration with UMSU, we can introduce UMGSA involvement in existing campaign initiatives such as Mental Health & Wellness, Sexual Violence Prevention, and more. In addition, strengthening our ties with UMSU would give UMGSA a stronger voice in the discussions surrounding the implementation of the U-Pass and our Health and Dental Plan, as well as open new avenues for lobbying government and other administrative bodies.
Vice-President Academic: Roxie Koohgoli
I’m Roxie Koohgoli and I am a current graduate student focused in Nutrition Medical Biochemistry (FHNS) located at all three campuses i.e. St Boniface Hospital Research, Bannatyne, and Fort Garry. I completed my B.Sc. (Honours) in Biomedical Science (major), Nutrition and Nutraceutical Sciences (minor) at the University of Guelph and spent 2 years at Newcastle University Medical School’s Institute of Cellular Medicine, UK before coming to UoM.
While at UoM, I have been an advocate for graduate students in my department on academic matters through my various involvements as well as assisted in organizing a multi-faculty symposium which included students from the Fort Garry, Bannatyne, and St. Boniface campuses. If elected as your next VP-Academic, I intend to continue to advocate for graduate students on academic matters such as improving the student-advisor agreement to ensure graduate student rights are fair and upheld, increasing opportunities for all students following degree completion by strengthening relations with Academics, Alumni, and Industry, and continue to enhance the UMGSA Awards. In addition, I will increase communication and collaboration between graduate students and faculty across all the UoM campuses, creating opportunities for innovative and multidisciplinary research. It would be a privilege to serve as your VP-Academic and advocate for your rights during the 2019/2020 Executive Year.
Campus Involvement: President HNS-GSA (2018/2019), VP HNS-GSA (2017/2018), Co-chair F3S symposium (2017/2018/2019), TA and Grader/Marker (2017/2018/2019), UPASS Grad Rep (2017/2018/2019), Grad Rep for FHNS Department Council (2018/2019), FHNS Rep for Faculty of Graduate Studies (2018/2019), FHNS Rep for Faculty of Agriculture (2018/2019), Grad Rep for FHNS Outreach Committee (2018/2019), GSA Councillor (2017/2018/2019), UMGSA Campaigns Committee (2017/2018/2019), UMGSA Bylaws Committee (2018/2019), and Communication Committee for FFHNS Symposium (2017).
Vice-President Academic: MD Shadhin
(Student advisor, author, team-leader, research assistant, entrepreneur, fitness trainer, photographer)
Md. Shadhin is currently pursuing his Master’s degree in Biosystems Engineering. His work includes manufacturing of polymer matrix composites from natural fiber for automobile and aerospace industries. Shadhin had completed his bachelor degree in Textile Engineering from Bangladesh University of Textiles (BUTex) and worked as an Assistant Manager for fabric supply chain, product development, and quality control in numerous local and multinational organizations. Shadhin is the founder of first ever student association to create online job opportunities platform for engineering students of BUTex and involved in advising student on academic, higher education, and career affairs. Shadhin loves to work in a team and belongs promising leadership qualities.
In personal life, Shadhin got the training on photography, worked as a fitness trainer, and attended numerous sports championship event.
Shadhin is running for Vice President – Academic position in the forthcoming UMGSA election 2019 and will work for the students for –
- Improvisation of current scopes of fund and award opportunities.
- Organising research seminar and training program.
- Workshop and events focusing on student’s contribution to industry.
- Stress management and awareness program.
- Dealing with FGS for student affairs.
- Career fair.
- Forming alumni association and launching mentorship program through them.
- Collaborating with UMSU for limiting the tuition and continuation fee hike.
Senator: Satwant Kaur
My name is Satwant Kaur and I am a Ph.D. student in the Centre for Earth Observation Science (CEOS) Department of Geography, studying the Forcing Mechanism of sea ice in the Arctic Ocean. Before joining my Ph.D. at University of Manitoba, I have worked as Junior Research Fellow at Defence Research and Development Organization (SASE, DRDO) and as Data Analyst at Panjab University, Chandigarh (India). Prior to that, I graduated with Master’s degree in Geography from Panjab University, Chandigarh and M. Tech in Remote Sensing from Birla Institute of Technology, Mesra (India). I have been a recipient of various scholarships which includes UMGF, IGSES, IGSS and GETS. During my time at UofM, I have been an active volunteer with the International Centre for Students (ICS) and participated in CEOS outreach events as well as Let’s Talk Science. Currently, I am the Education Director of the Manitoba GIS Users Group (MGUG) and serving as the board member.
Graduate students face a lot of challenges which includes but are not limited to research, finances, family, social and mental health issues and those challenges get double, if you are an international student. Being an international student, I have also been through a lots of challenges and have made every possible effort to confront them to not just survive but to grow. It took a lot of time and efforts but I am proud to say that I finally found the home away from home in Winnipeg and at UofM.
Empowering my fellow students has been a long-standing goal of mine. I strongly believe that the important part of representing graduate students includes listening to you and understanding your problems. If elected, my main goal as a UMGSA Senator would be to make sure that the graduate students’ voice is heard and taken into account in Senate decisions. My plan is to convey your message to the Senate loud and clear through proactive representation and to advocate the issues that matters to all of us, the graduate students.
Senator: Julia Minarik
To offer a brief and academic-centric self portrait, my name is Julia Minarik and I graduated with a B.A. (Hons) in Philosophy & Economics last year and the Paul Russell Gold medal for the highest standing in Philosophy. In 2016 and 2018 I received the U of MEmerging Leader Award for my work across campus, in the faculty of arts, my department, and numerous student groups. I’m currently in the first year of my M.A. program, passionately pursuing research on tattoo art and aesthetic obligation, and side reading on the metaphysics of material objects and gothic fiction. Currently, I am the President of the Philosophy Students’ Association, and the main chapter contact at the U of M for the international organization Minorities and Philosophy (M.A.P).
In my undergrad, a significant amount of my time was spent in student politics, most notably as a Senator for Arts on ASBC from 2016-17, and the Vice President of ASBC from 2017-18. In both of these roles I found a passion for university governance that bloomed from my fairly early frustration with university bureaucracy and a deep dissatisfaction with the then-current policies. In my roles on ASBC, I took the opportunity to sit on various faculty committees in Arts dealing with academic policy, and academic dishonesty as the student rep for ARPC, LDC and ARAC. In addition to these positions I have held a seat on my department council for the last 3 years, and was appointed by my department as the student representative on their hiring committee in 2017-18. Consecutive years on these committees, the ability to witness and involve myself in the hiring process, and endless hours of ranting with folks in the arts offices, has given me a decent feel of the academic policy within the university, as well as the emotional investment and desire required to make change that would be invaluable to a position on Senate.
If elected for the UMGSA I will be thrilled to return to Senate with the experience from my time as an ASBC Senator, from which I have formed clearer expectations of both the Senate’s operations as well as what it takes to make changes in a large university body.
I hope to unite the UMGSA Senators with the Senators from UMSU and other faculties. Motions in Senate move quickly, and the content dealt with can be overwhelming; collaborating beforehand with other Senators on upcoming meetings is an effective means of both properly understanding the implications of the motions, as well as gaining support from colleagues to protest dangerous moves from the top of the university.
I would also like to gather information on and address the problematic use of space within the university. The university administration has tended to privately sell off space to externalclients, a strategic business move which brings in money, but cuts into classrooms, grad offices, and student home bases on campus. This problem has arisen despite the university funneling donor money into building projects rather than into to departments and full time faculty; something I also care greatly about.
Given recent departmental cuts and the inability of many departments to contribute to large student driven projects, I would also like to advocate to change the university policies that tie funding for conference hosting to departmental contributions.
On the level of the UMGSA, I would continue to work on more widespread, in-department advertising of events, as well as a wider dissemination of the information received from Senate.
Senator: Ehsan Tahmasebian
My name is Ehsan Tahmasebian, and I am in my 4th year of Ph.D. program in Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. I completed my Bachelor of Engineering in K.N.Toosi University of Technology in 2011. I started my Graduate program in University of Manitoba in September 2011 as a M.Sc. student and after finishing my M.Sc. program I have started my Ph.D. program in the same department.
I served as the vice president and co-councilor of ECE-UMGSA chapter 2014-2017. During my term as the ECE-UMGSA VP, I was in charge of organizing events, such as orientation for new graduate students in ECE department as well as social events inside ECE department. I also represented our department in the UMGSA council and I served in UMGSA event committee in 2015. Since 2017 I have been Co- councilor of ECE department in UMGSA council.
Experiences: ECE-UMGSA Vice-President (2014/2017), ECE-UMGSA Co-councilor (2014/2019), UMGSA Event Committee (2015), Electrical Engineering scientific student association, K.N.Toosi University Vice President (2008/2009) , U of M TA and Grader/Marker (2011-2019), Research Assistant (2011-2019), U of M Intramural Soccer Supervisor (2018-2019), U of M intramural soccer Referee (2017/2018).
Honors & Awards:
- UMGF (University of Manitoba Graduate Fellowship) University of Manitoba, 2015
- MITACS accelerate award, University of Manitoba, 2014-2015
- IGSES (international graduate students entrance scholarship), University of Manitoba, 2011
- IGSS (international graduate students scholarship), University of Manitoba, 2012, 2013
- FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES TRAVEL AWARD
- Ranked 2nd in national high school’s computer Olympiad competition by “Rahe-Olympiad Magazine”, June 2005.
- Honored and selected in the first round of the National Mathematics and computer Olympiad, June 2004, 2005, 2006.
- Represent graduate students’ interests in all senate and student senate caucus meetings with my experience from my time as councilor in UMGSA council
- Represent graduate student interests to UMGSA council meetings and show a strong voice in favor of them with my experience from my time as councilor in UMGSA council.
- Increase communication with GSA representatives of all departments as well as interaction with graduate students.
- Promoting UMGSA among all graduate students, part-time and full time.
- Increase communication across all campuses.
- Form stronger relations and opportunities with Academics, Alumni, and Industry in order to help graduate students with getting jobs after graduation.
- Having a productive interaction with UMSU senators regarding the general issues of students.
Important Dates & Deadlines
Nomination Period: 9:00am Monday, February 4th to 4:00pm Friday, February 15th
Mandatory All Candidates Meeting: Friday, February 15th at 4:30pm – UMGSA Office, 221 UMSU University Centre
Campaign Preparation Period: 9:00am Monday, February 25th to Friday, March 8th
Campaign Period: Monday, March 11th to Friday, March 22nd
Election Forum (Fort Garry): Tuesday, March 19th from 11:30am to 1:30pm – UMGSA Lounge, 217 UMSU University Centre
Voting Period: Wednesday, March 20th to Friday, March 22nd
CRO & DRO Contact Information
The Chief Returning Officer (CRO) and Deputy Returning Officer (DRO) oversee the annual UMGSA General Election. If you have questions or concerns about the election process or anything else, feel free to contact them.
Chief Returning Officer: Ademola Adesola (email@example.com)
Deputy Returning Officer: Pradeep Thapa (firstname.lastname@example.org)