UTGSU 2024 Elections

About me:

I am a 1-st year Ph.D. student in the Department of Mathematics. I am a member of the board of the Math Graduate Student Association. Over this year, I organized the graduate seminar in the department, as well as a variety of other academic activities. I also served on the student government of my previous university (NRU HSE) and participated in political protests. Feel free to explore my website to see other facets of my life. I am running for the position of Division 3 UTGSU Director.

Candidate Statement:

Hi! I'm Grisha, a Ph.D. student in the Department of Mathematics. 

I believe it's time to change the way we see UTGSU. Now more than ever, we need a strong union to fight for our rights as students and academics. 

Last term, I spent almost 300 hours on my TA duties, not because I particularly like TAing but because I need money. I could have spent this time researching, attending seminars, or collaborating and networking with my colleagues. I know many of you work much more than I do, and I can't imagine how you do it. We need to fight for change. We need increased base funding. Our science is not free!

The current state of the university's base funding is deplorable. As graduate students, we came to rely on CUPE gains more than on the funding provided by the university. This state of affairs is unacceptable. We deserve fair pay for our research work. 

For the last academic year, I worked on the board of the MGSA (math grad student association), organizing the graduate seminar for our department. The issue that was brought up the most is money, and believe me, not in a positive way. I don't understand why this is the case. The University of Toronto claims to be one of the leading universities in the world. Yet, it can't afford to pay its students, even though the last financial year saw record profits in the university's budget. This needs to stop!

The only way we can achieve this goal is by standing together. I understand how powerful collective action can be. I served in the student government of my previous university and participated in direct action protesting Russian political oppression. I know that we are much stronger when we are united. That's why I want to affect positive change at UTGSU and make it a union that we can organize around and win fair funding.

Grisha Taroyan, Ph.D. Student, Department of Mathematics