History of the GSU
The Graduate Studentsâ€™ Union began as the Post-Graduate Society, a society of the MUN Studentsâ€™ Union, the undergraduate studentsâ€™ union at Memorial. Formed to address the unique needs of a growing graduate population at Memorial, the society had several goals. These included providing activities of a more mature nature for graduate students, publishing a review of research being undertaken at the University to be distributed to other universities, and uniting the often isolated graduate student body.
As a society of the undergraduate studentsâ€™ union, however, graduate students rarely got the attention they required. Although graduate students could hold positions on the Council, they represented only a small percentage of the student body and were not well represented. The needs of graduate students were viewed as those of a small special interest group.
Graduate students soon realized that their interests would be better addressed by an independent Studentsâ€™ Union. A graduate studentsâ€™ union would allow graduate students to more effectively represent themselves on University committees, boards, and councils. The Graduate Studentsâ€™ Union was officially incorporated in 1971.
Today, the Graduate Studentsâ€™ Union advocates for its members through comprehensive campaigns strategies directed at policy-makers. It also acts as an advocate on studentsâ€™ behalf, and provides a number of services to improve studentsâ€™ lives while they are studying at MUN.
The GSU is a member of the Canadian Federation of Students, working with over eighty other member studentsâ€™ unions of the Federation across the country to campaign for more accessible post-secondary education and to provide services. In Newfoundland and Labrador, every post-secondary student, including the members of the MUN Studentsâ€™ Union, the Grenfell College Student Union, the Marine Institute Studentsâ€™ Union, and the College of the North Atlantic Studentsâ€™ Union, are members of the Canadian Federation of Students. Countrywide, more than thirty graduate studentsâ€™ associations are members of the Federation, and participate through the National Graduate Caucus.