Graduate Student Government Association

We did it! On January 30th and 31st, an overwhelming 91.2% of students voted to restructure student government at Emory University, create two equal and autonomous bodies governed by and for undergraduate and graduate students, respectively, and ensure more equitable representation across campus for all students. This new structure is presented in the below organizational chart.

On Monday, December 6, the Student Government Legislature passed the following bill to create a more equitable system of student government at Emory University.

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Bill 50sl19, “Bill to Create an Equitable Student Government Structure,” Submitted by Governance Committee Chair William Palmer, Graduate Student Government Association President Jared Greenbaum, Graduate Business Rep. Mark Neufeld, Law School Rep. Stephen Lang, Laney Graduate School President Crystal Grant, Graduate Business Association President Jamie Perkins, Graduate Nursing Council President Audrey Straus, Rollins Student Government President Garret Fox, Candler Coordinating Council President Karen Sawyer

Whereas, the Student Government Association is responsible for establishing an equitable student self-government, that insures the basic student rights of personal freedom and pursuit of a quality education, and provides the opportunity for responsible individual and collective action; and,

Whereas, the current structure and function of the Student Government Association is not equitably serving undergraduate and graduate students; and,

Whereas, the needs of undergraduate and graduate students are fundamentally different; and,

Whereas, the Student Government Executive Branch has historically been composed predominantly of undergraduates; and,

Whereas, the current structure of the Student Government Association’s Legislative Branch allows undergraduate legislators to pass University-Wide legislation by simple majority; and,

Whereas, undergraduate and graduate students contribute a portion of their Student Activity Fee to the University Macro; and,

Whereas, it is the responsibility of the Student Government Association to lay, collect, and distribute the Student Activity Fee as approved by the Board of Trustees; and,

Whereas, the utilization of University Macro account funds does not reflect the level of contribution from undergraduate and graduate students;

Therefore, be it affirmed by the 50th Student Government Association, let it be resolved that the Student Government Association will henceforth serve and be composed of only undergraduate students at Emory, and recognize the Graduate Student Government Association as an autonomous and equal governing body by and for Emory’s graduate student population; the Allied Health Council, the Graduate Business Association, the Laney Graduate Student Council, the Student Bar Association, the Medical School Senate, the Graduate Nursing Council, the Rollins Student Government Association, the Candler Coordinating Council, and all future graduate divisional councils will be governed by the Graduate Student Government Association, and the responsibility to lay, collect, and distribute the Student Activity Fee paid by graduate students will fall under the purview of the Graduate Student Government Association; the two equal and autonomous governing bodies shall cooperate to work on significant matters impacting the entire Emory University student body, through a joint governance committee, and shall work together to ensure a smooth transition to the new and equitable student governing structure.