The GSA engages in both internal and external advocacy in pursuit of the priorities developed in our annual Board Strategic Work Plan.

University Advocacy

The GSA has seats on all the major governing bodies of the University--including the Board of Governors--and brings graduate student issues to the table.

Did You Know?

Extensive advocacy work led by the Students' Union (on behalf of undergraduate students) and the GSA (on behalf of graduate students) has resulted in the creation of the Charter of Student Rights and Responsibilities in 2020. 

GSA graduate student leaders also meet regularly with senior University Administrators about matters affecting graduate students.

External Advocacy

The GSA is involved in advocacy and information sharing with other institutions at the national, provincial, and municipal levels.

At the municipal level, the GSA is a member of the Edmonton Students' Alliance, which works together to share information and represent students in the Edmonton region.

Provincially, the GSA works closely with other Alberta GSAs as part of the Alberta Provincial Graduate Advocacy Council (ab-GPAC). Ab-GPAC is a student-led, non-partisan organization that advocates to the provincial government on behalf of over 15,000 graduate students enrolled in graduate programs at Athabasca University, the University of Alberta, and the University of Calgary. At the U of A, the GSA President, the GSA Vice-President External, and one additional graduate student serve as ab-GPAC board members.

The U of A has played a key role in ab-GPAC ever since its incorporation in March 2015 and has collaborated closely with the other members on multiple advocacy efforts including the submission of position papers to the provincial government on the subjects of graduate student labour relations, tuition and fees, the provincial funding model for post-secondary institutions, and more. Each year ab-GPAC also submits provincial budget recommendations to the government and regularly attends meetings with both the Ministry of Advanced Education and its undergraduate counterparts the Council of Alberta University Students (CAUS) and the Alberta Students' Executive Council (ASEC).

Nationally, the GSA participates in formal and informal venues alongside other Canadian GSAs to share best practices and discuss key issues affecting graduate students.


The GSA graduate student leaders submit regular reports on their ongoing advocacy efforts to the GSA Council. These reports, which are part of the GSA Council meeting material packages are made public for the information of graduate student and can be accessed through our GSA Council webpage