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Responsibilities, Rights and Welfare of Graduate Student Academic Employees Committee
The C-12 committee focused on revising HOP sections 12.C.3 and 12.C.4 to address gaps in information about undergraduate student workers (see point 1, below). During the revision process, several gaps in language about graduate students were identified and tabled for discussion/revision in 2012-13 (point 2). Other topics discussed during the year (points 3 and 4) involved requesting information and receiving clarifications from the Graduate School on graduate student benefits and taxation.
1. Undergraduate Student Workers: Last year, a working group was convened by the provost’s office to address gaps in HOP 12.C.3 and 12.C.4 about appointments of undergraduate students in academic titles. Specifically, the group noted that students in job codes 0066, 0070, and 0095 (tutor, undergraduate assistant, and undergraduate research assistant, respectively) had open issues regarding the following:
- enrollment requirements for long semesters and the summer;
- a definition of “good academic standing”;
- whether students could work during the summer after graduation;
- mechanism for payment (monthly, hourly); and
- grievance processes.
The C-12 committee discussed the working group’s recommendations and implemented them as new language in HOP 12.C.3 and 12.C.4. The revisions were submitted to the Faculty Council as no-protest legislation. There were several protests, resulting in further revision and discussion. The final revisions to these HOP sections were passed by no-protest vote in May, 2012. The committee’s revisions focused entirely on sections pertaining to undergraduate workers.
2. Graduate Student Workers: During revision of HOP 12.C.3 and 12.C.4 several protests were lodged about language pertaining to graduate student employment. Because this happened very late in the year, the C-12 committee did not make any revisions to such language, but we have placed it on the agenda as a priority for 2012-13.
3. Taxation of Graduate Student Tuition: We requested information from the Graduate School about taxation of graduate student tuition and whether this might be waived. We learned from John Dalton, assistant dean, that they were working on this issue. During the course of the year, we received information that a ruling had been made, giving graduate students relief from this taxation requirement. No further action was necessary, as this question was resolved in a satisfactory manner.
4. Graduate Student Health Insurance: We asked for some clarifications about the new policy allowing graduate students to purchase UT’s group medical insurance plan. We received responses from Marvin Hackert, associate dean, answering our questions about what types of funds can be used for this purpose. No further action was necessary.
Andrea Gore, chair