GSA Vice-President Labour 2017-2018: Sasha van der Klein
"The Vice-President Labour is responsible for labour-related matters concerning graduate students" (GSA Bylaw and Policy, Section D: GSA Officers, GSA Bylaw, Section D.BYL.2.2.d).
Born and raised in Leiden, a small city in the Netherlands, I obtained my bachelor and master degree in Animal Science from Wageningen University. I am crazy about chickens, therefore I moved to Edmonton to do my PhD with Martin Zuidhof. Apart from chickens, I also really like sports and horses, mostly a combination of the two. Since Canadians are crazy about ice hockey and I was aiming at integrating quickly, I also started to play hockey. This turned out to be a great success, I really enjoy that! Though I haven’t quite got rid of some of my Dutch habits, my main method of transportation around campus and the city is still my bike.
My PhD research topic is nutrition and lighting in broiler breeders, the parents of your chicken nuggets. I am looking at how day length during rearing influences the performances of the hens, so practically how many good quality eggs the hen lays. At Wageningen University, I was teaching assistant for several courses, student representative of the Animal Breeding and Genetics chair group and member of several other committees. I have volunteered on several events such as the ALES100 open days and I am actively engaging undergraduate students in (poultry) research. I have been an active leader in the Poultry Research Centre Student Club for the last two years and I have been representative for the Agriculture Food and Nutritional Science department of the Graduate Student Association of the Faculty of Agriculture Life and Environmental Sciences during the 2015-2016 academic year.
I ran for Vice-President Labour again this year as I experienced in my first term that many graduate student are facing issues with employment at the University of Alberta. My experience over the last year has given me a broad scope on the issues, and prepared me well for the negotiations for the next Collective Agreement, coming up this year. I have a clear, direct, and helpful nature, which will allow me to be an effective negotiator and helps me to continue supporting graduate students within the wide range of challenging environments here at the U of A.