Kermode and Reiss Take Top GSC SpotsBy Josh Hartmann
The Graduate Student Council selected its officers for the 1994-95 academic year at its meeting on Tuesday.
The council elected Roger G. Kermode G to be its new president. Stan J. Reiss G was elected vice president. Susan L. Ipri G and Kathleen L. Evanco G will take over as secretary and treasurer respectively.
The new officers will officially begin their terms on May 10.
"I'm very excited about the potential for next year, knowing these people personally," said outgoing GSC President Caryl B. Brown G. "Those four people, I can see them doing tremendous things next year."
Kermode named two main goals for the GSC under his administration: increased student participation in the GSC and closer ties with academic departments.
Reestablishment of the GSC newsletter will be the key to increasing student participation, Kermode said.
"We will also be making a concentrated effort for orientation week to educate new (and returning) students about what the GSC has to offer them," Kermode said. "We would also like to increase general awareness around campus that the GSC is also here to help people resolve any problems they may be experiencing."
Moreover, the establishment of graduate student committees within specific departments would improve the GSC's ties with those departments, Kermode said. "Several departments, such as mechanical engineering and nuclear engineering, already have councils in place," he said.
Top issues for graduate students include campus safety and funding for research assistants and teaching assistants, Kermode said.
As president, Kermode sees his role as being able to "facilitate open communications between graduate students and various other groups on campus that we deal with." He praised the credentials of the other officers elected on Tuesday.
Kermode is a Fulbright Scholar from Australia. He graduated from the University of Melbourne with degrees in electrical engineering and computer science. He is a graduate student in the Program in Media Arts and Sciences and lives in Boston.
Reiss seeks academic involvement
In an interview yesterday, Reiss said he would seek a greater academic role for the GSC, specifically citing sponsorship of thesis workshops and lectures by academic speakers as potential ideas.
"I would like the vice president to become a person who is frequently seen in administrative offices consulting and being consulted about important graduate student issues," Reiss said. "I would also like the position to involve more direct leadership on the various standing committees that we have."
Currently the only formal duties for the vice president are to represent the graduate student community on Institute committees and to aid the GSC president. But Reiss said he would like to expand the vice president's role.
"Traditionally the vice president position has been more of a catch-all after the president, and thus does not have very significant clout with many administration members on its own," he said. "I will have to overcome that to forge closer ties with the administration."
Reiss is a first-year PhD student in electrical engineering and graduated from Cornell University. He lives in Westgate Hall.
Ipri to keep students in touch
The GSC secretary's job is traditionally logistical, but Ipri said she would do more when she takes office next month.
"What I'd like to do is to be more of a communications person, to keep the graduate students more in touch with the GSC and be more aware of what's going on," she said. "The GSC is something everyone can use and be a part of."
Ipri said she would be responsible for producing the newsletter, which will include information about events sponsored by the GSC, departments, and other Institute groups.
In addition, Ipri envisions the GSC being more active in conveying graduate students' needs and concerns to the Institute. She also stressed the need for stronger ties with academic departments.
Ipri is a first-year graduate student in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. She graduated from Princeton University and is a resident of Tang Hall.
Evanco seeks efficiency
Evanco said she hopes to continue the work of her predecessor in keeping the GSC finances organized and efficient. She is also looking forward to the working with the other officers.
Participation and safety are the primary issues that Evanco would like the GSC to address in the upcoming year. She added that the GSC should play a larger role in work-environment issues, including harassment, problems with advisors or departments, and graduate student funding.
Evanco attended MIT as an undergraduate and is a first-year graduate student in the Program in Media Arts and Sciences. She lives in Edgerton House.