Mandate and governing documents

GGAPSS (the University of Toronto Graduate Geography and Planning Student Society) is tasked with the following:

  • supporting and representing graduate students in the Department of Geography and Program in Planning;
  • cultivating public culture among students, faculty, and staff; and
  • fostering a collegial social and academic environment.

GGAPSS is organized and run by an Executive Committee, several Standing Committees, representatives to external organizations within the university, and appointed sub-committees or task forces when we deem them necessary.

Mandate

Through our endeavours, we build friendships and connections with each other, across programs and within our Department. Through our donations of time and energy, we also build solidarity with the wider university, surrounding neighbourhoods, and community organizations.

We also recognize the immense benefits of encouraging human geographers, physical geographers, and planners to interact and learn from each other. To help students get to know each other outside the classroom, we organize social events and much more. For a list of the services we offer to our constituents, please see our Services page.

Governing documents

The following important documents are available for you to download:

Roles

The following role descriptions are not a replacement for our official Constitution, Bylaws, and Policies and Procedures, but they might help you determine who to contact with a specific issue, or which role you might want to fill next year!

  • President: Announces all GGAPSS meetings and elections; chairs the AGM and the Business Meeting and all meetings of the Executive Committee; represents GGAPSS on external committees and at external meetings; and generally oversees the administrative and day-to-day operations of the society.
  • VP Academic: Acts as President if he/she is unavailable; meets with the Graduate Coordinator and Director of the Program in Planning; and sits on various academic committees (and reports back on their activities).
  • VP Finance: Is responsible for the financial affairs of GGAPSS; prepares a budget to be approved at the first general meeting after the AGM; prepares a financial update to be presented at the Business Meeting; and organizes fundraising, if applicable.
  • VP Communications: Takes minutes at all GGAPSS meetings; coordinates the regular update and maintenance of this website; supervises Terra Firma (the GGAPSS publication/blog); and encourages students to create biographies for themselves on the Department website.
  • VP Internal: Organizes the social activities of GGAPSS by planning parties and other events as desired; compiles an events calendar; and coordinates the upkeep of the Taylor Room (the student lounge) and other shared spaces.
  • VP External and Equity: Works on issues of equity and diversity within GGAPSS and the Department; organizes anti-oppression training for GGAPSS representatives; administers our community donations fund; and acts as a liaison between the university community and other organizations in order to foster strong working relationships.
  • VP Space Management: Coordinates graduate office space; allocates office assignments and works with department administration for the organization, furnishing, and maintenance of GGAPSS space; coordinates with Vice President – Internal regarding functions and operations of the Taylor and Butter room.
  • Cohort representatives (six positions): Represent the concerns of each departmental cohort (human geographers, physical geographers, planners, Master’s students, Ph.D. students, etc.) at GGAPSS and Department meetings.
  • CUPE 3902 stewards (three positions): Attend Canadian Union of Public Employees meetings; represent the interests of our graduate students at those meetings; bring issues to the attention of the CUPE; publicize relevant CUPE events; and make themselves available to answer any and all questions concerning CUPE, the Collective Agreement, grievances, etc.
  • GSU representatives (two positions): Attend all meetings of the University of Toronto Graduate Student Union; represent the interests of our graduate students at those meetings; publicize relevant GSU events; and make themselves available to answer any and all questions concerning the GSU, health benefits, etc.
  • PAC representatives (two positions): Relays comments and concerns between GGAPSS and the Planning Alumni Committee; and publicizes relevant PAC events.
  • OPPI representatives (two positions): Relay comments and concerns between GGAPSS and the Ontario Professional Planners Institute/Canadian Institute of Planners; attends OPPI/CIP meetings; and publicizes relevant OPPI/CIP events. For more about OPPI rep responsibilities, click here.
  • UTAGA representative: Relays comments and concerns between GGAPSS and the University of Toronto Association of Geography Alumni; and publicizes relevant UTAGA events.
  • ULI representative: Relays comments and concerns between GGAPSS and the Urban Land Institute; and publicizes relevant ULI events.
  • Trustees (two positions): Review and evaluate GGAPSS’ activities at the end of each academic year and offer constructive feedback for the benefit of future governments.
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