Graduate and Professional Student Senate discusses budget


Photo by Katherine Kealey/ Iowa State Daily

The Graduate Professional Student Senate meets once a month in the Sunroom at Memorial Union, while also offering the meetings in a virtual format via Webex.

Jordan Tovar

The Graduate and Professional Student Senate (GPSS) examined the 2023 budget after meeting quorum.


Initially it looked as if no legislation was going to take place due to not meeting the quorum required for it to happen. However, after the guest speakers for the night were finished, enough members joined so the meeting was able to continue.


Efrain Rodriguez-Ocasio, a graduate student majoring in chemical and biological engineering, was elected as senate information officer after nominating himself during a special election held during the meeting. Before this, GPSS President Chelsea Iennarella-Servantez, a graduate student majoring in biomedical and animal sciences, was acting as the senate information officer. 


“I’m really interested in improving the program, finding more funding and making it more accessible, and making sure that the changes Chelsea has already started talking about are implemented,” Rodriguez-Ocasio said. 


A discussion was led by GPSS Treasurer Zakayo Kazibwe, a graduate student majoring in genetics development and cell biology, for the senate budget for fiscal year 2023. After all was said and done, it was found that there was a projected surplus of $392,522.92 in the budget for next fiscal year. Future meetings will discuss what the senate will do with the surplus in funds.


Guest speakers for the night included Senior Vice President of Student Affairs Toyia Younger, and Dean of Library Services Hilary Seo. 

Younger gave a presentation on the Division of Student Affairs. She mentioned a campaign started last semester called Cyclone Support, which is meant to share resources dealing with issues such as food insecurity and mental health. 


Seo’s presentation dealt with different opportunities that are offered through the library such as research tools which include Overleaf LaTeX, which is used to edit scientific papers, and DataShare, which is used to transfer data between parties. The presentation also mentioned a scholarship that would be used to fund students’ projects in the future. 


GPSS will meet again on March 28 in the Memorial Union.