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Graduate Student Association

The Graduate Student Association (GSA) at the University of Northern Colorado (UNC) is a student-run organization that seeks to advance the interests of over 3,300 UNC graduate students through the representation of their needs and support of activities central to their graduate education.

The GSA organizes the distribution of the largest pool of research and conference grant funding available to graduate students at UNC. Grant applications are received over four  grant cycles throughout the year. All grant applications are reviewed and scored by a volunteer committee of graduate students. 

The GSA is also tasked with contributing to the well-being of graduate students. The GSA coordinates numerous social and professional development programs, develops campus and community partnerships, appoints graduate students to campus committees and provides general support to UNC graduate students.

If you are interested in volunteering with the GSA, please send an email to david.shimokawa@unco.edu. The GSA provides representation for UNC graduate students by appointing students to participate in various councils, committees and advisory panels including:

  • GSA Activities & Events
    • The GSA is always looking for volunteers to lead meet-ups and activities for graduate students. We are currently in search of students to lead meet-ups for the following activities (incoming graduate students are welcome to volunteer):
      • August 17 (Friday) 5-7 p.m.: Taste of UNC meet-up
      • August 17 (Friday) 7 p.m.: RecFest meet-up
      • August 18 (Saturday) 7 p.m.: Northern at Night meet-up
      • August 19 (Sunday) 11 a.m.-2 p.m.: Student Involvement Fair meet-up
      • August 19 (Sunday) 4-6 p.m.: UNC Local Business Fair meet-up
      • August 23 (Thursday) 5-7 p.m.: Rec. Center Pool Party meet-up
      • August 24 (Friday) 4 p.m.: Cesar Chaves Cultural Center BBQ
    • Interested volunteers should contact GSA Council Representative Dannon Cox. If you have an idea for an event you'd like to lead, let him know! Past events include football games, movie screenings, academic talks, bar meet-ups, etc.
  • Graduate Academic Appeals Board (AAB)
    • AAB appointees and graduate faculty members review graduate student appeals on a case-by-case basis. Appeal hearings involve document reviews and/or full-board reviews. Interested volunteers should contact GSA Council Representative Nicholas Dix.  
  • Graduate (Faculty) Council
    • Graduate Council appointees study and recommend policy on matters regarding graduate faculty, graduate students and graduate studies at UNC. GSA appointees are members with full voting rights. Volunteers interested in serving on Graduate Council should contact GSA Director David Shimokawa.
  • Campus Recreation Center Advisory Board (CRAB) 
    • GSA appointees to the Campus Recreation Center Advisory Board meet periodically with Recreation Center staff members to recommend policy and address concerns regarding the UNC Campus Recreation Center. This position is currently filled.
  • Student Senate
    • The Student Senate is an elected body of student representatives. UNC graduate students are eligible to run for Student Senate office and receive financial compensation for their service. Student Senate meetings are held bi-weekly at 5:30 p.m. in the University Center Council Room or Panorama Room. The GSA is seeking graduate student representatives to increase representation and lobbying efforts. Interested volunteers should contact GSA Council Representative Margaret Sebastian.  
  • Graduate Student Appreciation Week (GSAW)
    • Graduate Student Appreciation Week was founded under the current GSA administration in 2016-2017 and takes place annually during the first week of April. GSAW committee members plan and execute numerous activities for graduate students and encourage all members of the campus community to recognize and show appreciation for graduate students. The GSA is seeking members for 2019 Graduate Student Appreciation Week planning committee. Interested volunteers should contact GSA Council Representative Dannon Cox
  • Research Day Planning Committee
    • The Graduate Student Association sponsors UNC's annual Research Day which allows graduate and undergraduate students to present their research to the campus community. GSA appointees on this committee assist with planning and are responsible for furthering the interests of graduate students with this event. The GSA is seeking members for 2019 Research Day planning committee. Interested volunteers should contact GSA Council Representative Katy LaFary
  • New Graduate Student Orientation (NGSO)
    • The Graduate Student Association partners with the Graduate School and International Admissions office each August for the New Graduate Student Orientation. The GSA provides a variety of information and presentations for incoming graduate students including panel discussions, student pairing, e-mail correspondence, city tours and meet and greet events. The GSA also sponsors lunch for all incoming graduate students following the NGSO. The GSA is seeking volunteers to lead or participate in various activities for new graduate students. Incoming graduate students are welcome to volunteer. Contact GSA Director David Shimokawa for more information. 

The GSA is staffed by one 20-hour/week graduate assistant (the GSA Director) and a number of volunteer graduate students (GSA Council, activity coordinators, committee members, etc).

Graduate Student Input Needed

New Graduate Student Survey

  • If you are a new graduate student, starting at UNC in Fall 2018, please take this survey to tell us what you'd like to know before you arrive in Colorado.  

Earn additional Research/Conference Travel Grant Money

The GSA has several sales positions available for graduate students interested in making connections with local businesses and organizations. Commission only. Earned commissions will only go towards research and/or conference travel reimbursements for the graduate student (no cash distributions). For more information, contact david.shimokawa@unco.edu to schedule an interview. 

2018 Events

New Graduate Student Orientation
Tuesday, Aug. 14,  8 a.m.-2 p.m.
McKee Hall (map)
The UNC Graduate Student Association participates annually in the fall New Graduate Student Orientation (NGSO) to help incoming graduate students acclimate to Greeley and the UNC campus. All new graduate students are strongly encouraged to attend so they can learn about available resources, hear the experiences and missteps of currently enrolled graduate students, and network with their peers and members of the Graduate Student Association. 

GSA New Graduate Student Lunch
Tuesday, Aug. 14, noon-1 p.m.
Holmes Dining Hall (map)
Join the members of the UNC Graduate Student Association to learn more about UNC, the Greeley community, and events and opportunities with the GSA. The GSA will have the private dining room (within Holmes Dining Hall) reserved for the first 50 attendees. Don't be late!

UNC Local Business Fair
Sunday, Aug. 19, 4-6 p.m.
Candelaria Lawn (map)
Learn more about the products and services offered by numerous companies and organizations in the Greeley community. Enjoy food samples, product giveaways, entertainment and more at this lively festival of commerce! All members of the UNC campus community are welcome! Interested businesses and organizations can purchase table space here: UNC Local Business Fair Registration Page


Past GSA Events and Activities 2017-2018

April 21 GSA Breakfast Club at Dark Heart Coffee Bar
April 7 GSA meetup at Hawai'i Club Lu'au
April 6 GSA Happy Hour Social at Cranford's Tea Tavern
April 5 Sex Trivia with the MPH Program at Brix Taproom
April 5 Research Day, sponsored in part by the GSA
April 4 Yoga on the Lawn (photos)
April 4 Free Group Fitness Classes for Grad Students at the Campus Rec Center
April 3 Free Chair Massages for Graduate Students
April 2 GSA Therapy Dog Playtime (photos)
April 2 Graduate Student Appreciation Week
March 31 GSA Breakfast Club at Egg & I
March 30 Grad Student Meet & Greet Lunch with Student Senate Candidates
March 8 Graduate Coordinators' Meeting
March 7 Safe Spring Break, sponsored in part by the GSA
March 7 GSA GA/TA Office Space Meeting 
Feb. 24 GSA Breakfast Club at Cranford Cove (photos)
Feb. 24 GSA Town Hall: Denver Campus
Feb. 20 GSA Town Hall: Greeley Campus
Feb. 17 GSA Yoga Class @ Sacred Space Yoga
Feb. 16, GSA Black Panther Screening at Greeley Cinemark (photos)
Jan. 27, GSA Breakfast Club at Cracker Barrel (photos)
Jan. 25, GSA Spring Welcome Back Mixer at 16th Street Tavern (photos)
Jan. 19, GSA Spring New Graduate Student Lunch
Jan. 17, Intro to GSA Grants workshop

Fall 2017

Nov. 30, GSA How to make an album workshop with SBST (photos)
Nov. 29, GSA meetup at UNC Holiday Dinner (photos)
Nov. 23, Thanksgiving Potluck with UNC Hawaii Club (photos)
Nov. 18, GSA team at UNC Military Challenge Race (photos)
Nov. 16, GSA Veteran/Military-related Research Symposium
Nov. 8, GSA Trivia Night at Broken Plow Brewery (photos)
Oct. 30, GSA Town Hall Meeting
Oct. 27, GSA Greeley Night Out at STUFT & Fritzler Corn Maze
Oct. 25, GSA flu shot clinic (photos)
Oct. 14, GSA Breakfast Club at IHOP (photos)
Oct. 11, GSA Trivia Night at Broken Plow Brewery (photos)
Oct. 5, GSA Zero Waste Sustainability Workshop by Brittney Morgan (photos)
Oct. 2, GSA BBQ at Veterans Services (photos)
Sept. 29, Middle Eastern & North African graduate student meetup (photos)
Sept. 16-17, GSA Estes Park Overnight Trip (photos)
Sept. 13, GSA Trivia Night at Broken Plow Brewery
Sept. 13, GSA meetup at UNC Taste of APASS (photos)
Sept. 13, GSA meetup at UNC Free Speech Panel Discussion (photos)
Sept. 7, GSA meetup at UNC DACA rally (photos)
Sept. 6, GSA meetup at UNC Cultural Services Extravaganza
Sept. 2, GSA meetup at UNC Football (photos)
Aug. 18, GSA meetup at Taste of UNC (photos)
Aug. 17, GSA City of Greeley Bus Tour
Aug. 16, GSA Beer in the Breezeway Mixer (photos)
Aug. 15, New Graduate Student Social at Broken Plow Brewery (photos)
Aug. 15, GSA New Graduate Student Lunch (photos)
Aug. 15, New Graduate Student Orientation (photos)
May 27, GSA meetup at CSU's BBQ Showdown in Estes Park (photos)
April 21, GSA Colorado Rockies Baseball Game (photos)
April 14, GSA Professional Development Lunch (photos)
April 7, GSA Graduate Student Appreciation Week Social (photos)
April 4, Graduate Student Appreciation Week Lunch at the UNC Graduate School (photos)
March 9, GSA/Campus Rec Strong Bear Powerlifting Competition (photos)
March 6, GSA meetup at UNC Jazz Thang at the Moxi Theater (photos)
March 3, Graduate Students at Biology Department Chili Cookoff (photos)
Feb. 14, GSA Bowling Night at Chipper Lanes (photos)
Feb. 6, GSA meetup at UNC CSC/PASC Dessert Bake-Off (photos)
Jan. 23, GSA Spring Welcome Back Mixer at Weldwerks Brewing (photos)