The GSS is an independent non-profit society run by and for students at the University of Victoria. 

Our structure is defined in our Bylaws and our organizational purposes are outlined in our Constitution. You can find the Constitution and Bylaws here


  • To represent the interests of the membership in a democratic manner in matters pertaining to education and the welfare of graduate students.
  • To promote the principle and practice of graduate student representation at all levels of decision making at the University of Victoria and on all agencies or other bodies which deliberate on the affairs of graduate students.
  • To promote cultural, intellectual, and recreational activities among the members.
  • To promote the academic and social welfare of its members through the provision of services.


The GSS governance structure is outlined in the Society’s Bylaws, which state in Bylaw 3.1, “The highest decision-making authority of the Society shall be referenda; followed by General Meetings; the Graduate Representative Council; and finally Executive Board.”


A UVic graduate students are voting members of the GSS. Members vote in elections and referenda. Referenda must be held to make changes to the mandatory GSS fees, which are assessed with tuition each term.

General meetings 

The GSS holds General Meetings of the members twice per year. The society may also call special general meetings.

The October Annual General Meeting receives the audit and appoints the auditors. 

The March Semi-Annual General Meeting approves the budget for the coming fiscal year, and ratifies Executive Board elections.

Both meetings hear reports about the activities and services of the society, and can consider changes to the Bylaws.

Graduate Representative Council

Each academic unit with a graduate program at UVic elects a representative to the GSS Graduate Representative Council. This body establishes organization policy, provides direction to the Executive Board, and is a forum to discuss matters of interest to the membership.

Executive Board

Each year the members elect five graduate students to serve on the Executive Board. The Executive Board is responsible for developing the society’s annual plan, advocating on behalf of graduate students, representing the GSS to the university and other bodies, coordinating graduate student representation on committees, and negotiating contracts for the society.

Committees of Council

Grad Council has several sub committees, chaired by Executive Board or Council members and with voting membership from among the Grad Council and general membership.