GUStA: Graduate Union of the Students of Art
Approved: January 7, 2015
1. General Purpose
1.1. To support and represent graduate students in the Department of Art.
1.2. To cultivate a collegial social and academic environment among students, faculty, and staff.
1.3. To seek and maintain fair representation of graduate students in the administration and decision making of the Department of Art, particularly with regard to matters that may affect the interests of graduate students.
1.4. To provide channels for communicating and cooperating with other organizations within the university.
1.5. To represent the interests of graduate students in relevant academic matters, particularly the form and content of the graduate programs in the Department of Art.
1.6. To represent the interests of graduate students in the provision of facilities and other resources for graduate students.
2.1. Membership includes all people registered in the School of Graduate Studies as full- or part-time graduate students in the Department of Art.
2.2. All members have voting rights.
2.3. Incoming students who are not yet registered in the School of Graduate Studies may participate in GUStA activities at the discretion of the Executive but will not have voting rights.
3.1. The Executive is the governing body of GUStA and is composed of three (3) positions. These include:
a) President or Co-Presidents
3.2. Should an Executive position become vacant mid-term, the remaining members of the Executive may appoint another member to the position until an official election is possible. The length of this interim appointment may be no longer than 1 month during the academic Fall/Winter terms.
3.3. Should the President or Co-Presidents need to be away during the academic year for personal or professional responsibilities, the President or Co-Presidents must appoint a Deputy President for the duration of the absence.
3.4. All powers not explicitly devoted to the members of the Executive belong to the body politic.
4.1. Officers are elected representatives of GUStA. There are eleven (11) Officer positions.
a) CUPE 3902 Steward
b) Editor-in-Chief, University of Toronto Art Journal
c) Editorial Committee Representative(s), University of Toronto Art Journal
d) Faculty Committee Representative
e) Graduate Students’ Union (GSU) Representative
f) Lecture Committee Representative(s)
g) Library and Image Services Representative
h) Social Coordinator(s)
i) Symposium Chair(s)
j) Symposium Committee Representative(s)
k) Website and Social Media Representative(s)
4.2. All Officers are accountable to the Executive.
4.3. All Officers of GUStA are elected, and all members of GUStA are eligible to be Officers.
4.4. With the exception of the Faculty Committee Representative, which is filled by a Ph.D. candidate or student, the Officer positions are open to members of both the M.A. and Ph.D. programs.
4.5. Should one of these positions become vacant mid-term, the Executive may appoint another member to the position until an official election is possible. The length of this interim appointment may be no longer than 1 month during the academic Fall/Winter terms.
5.1. All elections are held at a general meeting.
a) Elections for President are held in April.
b) All other Executive and Officer positions are elected in September.
5.2. Nominations are invited by the President two weeks before elections and are accepted until the election.
5.3. Voting will be by show-of-hands of those present at the general meeting. Each student may vote for no more than one candidate per office.
5.4. Within three days of the general meeting a list of the elected officers’ names and their program registrations (M.A. or Ph.D.) will be publicly announced.
5.5. Newly-elected Executives and Officers shall assume their official duties as delineated in 5.6 and 5.7.
5.6. The term of office for the President or Co-Presidents is twelve (12) months and will commence May 1 following the election.
5.7. The term of office for all other Executive and Officer positions will commence immediately following the election in September and will terminate August 31 of the following year.
5.8. Executive and Officers may be recalled by a 2/3 vote at any general meeting.
6. Meetings of GUStA
6.1. General meetings will be publicly announced and held at least four times per year.
6.2. A general meeting may be called by ten members petitioning the Executive.
6.3. A quorum is constituted by an attendance of ten-percent of the members of GUStA.
6.4. General meetings and Executive/Officers meetings will be chaired by the President or Co-Presidents.
7. Financial Responsibility
7.1. Any funds held by GUStA are deposited in an account in a nearby bank and are the Executive’s responsibility.
7.2. The Executive may not contract debts on behalf of GUStA.
7.3. At least two Executive members must approve spending of these funds and sign all checks.
7.4. Should the GUStA fail to elect a Treasurer, the Executive has the responsibility to supervise the management of all financial assets.
7.5. Should the GUStA fail to elect an Executive, and thereby become dormant, signing authority for GUStA funds shall be held in trust by the Department of Art.
8. Responsibilities of the Executive and Officers
8.1. President or Co-Presidents
a) Call for and chair GUStA meetings. Prepare meeting agendas and circulate at least one (1) week prior to each meeting.
b) Meet with the Director of Graduate Studies and Department Chair once per semester to discuss GUStA initiatives or problems on behalf of GUStA members.
c) Hold signing authority with the Treasurer. Co-sign all GUStA checks.
d) Oversee GUStA activities and ensure plans made at meetings are completed.
e) Administer the distribution of study carrels and lockers in the Graduate Study Room and Common Room.
f) Organize some means of welcoming new graduate students to the Department of Art, and give a presentation about GUStA at the new student orientation.
g) Call for and preside over the election process for President at the end of the academic year and for all other Executive and Officer positions at the start of the academic year.
h) Prepare a written report of completed and ongoing projects at the end of his or her term.
a) Take minutes at GUStA meetings and distribute them on the GUStA listserv.
b) Maintain GUStA’s electronic archive on Dropbox.
a) Create GUStA’s annual budget and present it for approval by the Executive and Officers at the second general meeting.
b) Monitor all income and expenses by maintaining GUStA’s ledger.
c) Complete and submit the GSU Head Grant application.
d) Hold signing authority with the President or one Co-President. Co-sign all GUStA checks.
e) Make deposits into the GUStA bank account.
f) Provide support to Executive and Officers who are completing funding applications for GUStA initiatives.
g) Present a budget of all income and expenditures incurred since September at GUStA’s year-end meeting in April. He or she must also distribute a written financial statement on the GUStA listserv at the end of his or her term.
8.4. CUPE 3902 Steward
a) Attend meetings held by CUPE and represent the interests of GUStA at those meetings.
8.5. Editor-in-Chief, University of Toronto Art Journal
a) Coordinate all aspects of publishing the University of Toronto Art Journal, including attending GUStA’s symposium, selecting papers, corresponding with the authors, publishing the journal online, and providing direction to the Editorial Committee Representatives.
8.6. Editorial Committee Representative(s), University of Toronto Art Journal
a) Provide support and assistance to the Editor-in-Chief on tasks related to publishing the University of Toronto Art Journal.
8.7. Faculty Committee Representative
a) Represent the interests of GUStA members at Graduate Committee meetings (in cases which graduate student attendance is permitted), and report back to GUStA. The Faculty Committee Representative must be in the Ph.D. program.
8.8. Graduate Students’ Union (GSU) Representative
a) Attend a minimum of three (3) out of four (4) Graduate Students’ Union Council monthly meetings. If the Representative cannot attend a meeting, he or she must arrange for another GUStA member to attend on his or her behalf.
b) Speak on behalf of GUStA members at the Graduate Students’ Union Council meetings.
c) Forward the weekly GSU Digest to GUStA members via the GUStA listserv.
8.9. Lecture Committee Representative(s)
a) Coordinate all aspects of inviting guest lecturers on behalf of GUStA, including selecting and inviting a speaker, room and equipment booking, advertising, coordinating with the speaker on travel arrangements and accommodations, managing the budget, and planning a reception if required.
b) Coordinate all aspects of GUStA’s Brown Bag Lunch speaker series, including corresponding with faculty members or other invited speakers from the University of Toronto, room and equipment booking, advertising, and other required duties.
8.10. Library and Image Services Representative
a) Communicate with Margaret English (Art Librarian) and Peggy Haist (Curator, Image Services including Departmental Web Services and FADIS) and express graduate student questions, concerns, and suggestions.
8.11. Social Coordinator(s)
a) Plan and advertise social events, such as parties, pub nights, and museum visits, for graduate students in the Department.
8.12. Symposium Chair(s)
a) Organize all aspects of the annual symposium, including conceiving of a theme and writing a call for papers, distributing the call for papers, inviting a keynote speaker, reviewing submissions and selecting graduate student speakers, booking space and catering for the event, fundraising and managing the budget, advertising, providing direction to the Symposium Committee Representatives, and other required duties.
8.13. Symposium Committee Representative(s)
a) Provide support and assistance to the Symposium Chair(s) on tasks related to the annual symposium.
8.14. Website & Social Media Representative
a) Maintain the GUStA website and all social media accounts. Initiate and complete updates to website design and content as necessary.
9. Amendments of the Constitution
9.1. Amendments may be passed at a general meeting by a 2/3 vote of those present at a general meeting.
10.1. The Constitution will be made available to anyone upon request.
10.2. Reasonable effort will be made to ensure the spirit and content of this constitution are known to the members of GUStA.
10.3. A paper copy of the constitution will be available in the GUStA archives, held in the Department of Art Library office. An electronic copy will be made available on GUStA’s website: https://uoftgusta.wordpress.com/about/constitution/