Student membership and the committee

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    • #262
      Darren KriticosDarren Kriticos
      Keymaster

      We have been discussing the notion of students as a special class of membership.  It stuck me that it would be useful to have a student member on the committee.  It would provide a student perspective to the management of the group, provide the fifth member to break deadlocks, and may bring student “skills” to the committee.  It would look great on the student’s CV, and they would gain experience in participating in this type of committee system.  I suggest that we explicitly include the office of a student member on the management committee and the elections.  Thoughts?

    • #278
      Kylie IrelandKylie Ireland
      Participant

      Finding a keen student may be tough – you could broaden to Early Career Researcher if you haven’t considered that – so student through to 3-5 years post-PhD

    • #285
      Frank KochFrank Koch
      Keymaster

      Early Career could work as a category. We’d have to handle the election a bit differently than as currently drafted but that’s a minor issue. I wonder whether we have enough early career/students to make this an interesting election…but maybe that doesn’t matter too much in the early going…

    • #289
      Amy MoreyAmy Morey
      Participant

      I agree such a position would be beneficial, and to at least broaden it to student/early-career, perhaps making them two separate positions if the membership grows enough (though that would obviously no longer create a tie-breaker situation).

    • #313
      Darren KriticosDarren Kriticos
      Keymaster

      I think we are confounding two slightly separate issues: membership discount and student mentorship. I take Kylie’s point that not all early career scientists get on their feet financially straight away. I am sympathetic to extending special financial consideration to people who fall into this situation. However, I think it should also extend to any potential members who might experience financial difficulties in attending (e.g., from developing countries, retirees, etc.). Rather than creating a whole slew of membership classes to deal with this, I think we should separate out the financial difficulty issue from the membership class issue. My feeling is that the student class is a good idea for a separate position on the committee, and for consideration of things like prizes for best paper during the year and best presentation during the annual meeting. Separate from that, I think we should make provision on the meeting registration process for the registrant to apply for fee relief on the grounds of financial difficulty. Of course, we would need to handle this process in a sensitive, dignified manner. Through my experience with Scouts I think we have good models for doing this appropriately.

    • #389
      Whalen DillonWhalen Dillon
      Participant

      I think student representation on the committee would do at least two good things, which Darren hit on. Provide the viewpoint of what current students are experiencing and show that the group is serious about engaging with students. So, I think it is important to make the distinction between “student” and “early-career” because the experiences are very different. An ideal goal may be to have representation from all stages, though this may not always happen. I am currently one of two student representatives for US-IALE and we develop student specific activities for the annual meetings and both are voting members on the executive committee. In this system one student rep position is up for election each year, and each student rep serves a two year term. The overlap helps for getting the incoming rep acclimated to the duties centering around events for the meetings. Some things to think about as the group grows, but for now I am definitely in favor of having a student member on the committee(s).

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