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Queen's University

Your 2014-2015 BGSC elected representatives (term starting May 1, 2014)



CHAIR (1) 

Amanda Tracey

Since 2012 I have been the Secretary & Co-Chair of the BGSC and I have always taken this position on the committee very seriously, making sure that I perform all of my duties in a timely and organized manner. I am also very active and involved in all of the committee's work and always support the BGSC events and endeavors. One of the goals I would have as Chair of the 2014-2015 committee would be to work on improving the sense of community in the department and to make sure that the interests and concerns of grad students in Biology are heard. 




1) Leslie Holmes 

 I am interested in running for social coordinator to bring a sense of community back to this department. Students and faculty are often busy and overwhelmed by their day-to-day activities, and sometimes just need a break. Whether you need to vent about the latest trials and tribulations of your research, seek feedback on your research projects,  discuss the latest published research, or simply just need to escape it all for a moment, as social coordinator, I will open these portals by organizing social activities and events that the entire department can take advantage of. I'm told that once upon a time, this department had a great sense of community, where staff, faculty and students attended social events equally and students were not confined to their own labs, but instead interacted with other labs. I would love to see such collaboration between staff, faculty, students and labs restored in this department once more. 


2) Becky Taylor

I would like to run for social coordinator for the committee because I know how important it is to have a release from the stress of being a grad student, to socialise and have some fun! Whether it is having a mid-week coffee (or tea) break together, having a drink at the Grad on a  Friday  after work, or going away for a whole weekend, these extra activities add not only extra enjoyment into our time here, but should bring all of the different labs together. People keep telling me how popular these activities used to be, and I would like to get both the staff and the students more involved to bring them back to the way they were.


1) Nathaniel Clark

I am pleased to announce that I am running for the position of Academic Coordinator for the 2014 to 2015 term. I have always been an active member of my academic community, whether it was acting as president of the student council in elementary and highschool, or as a member of the Queen’s Orientation Committee during my undergrad. As a result, over the years I have developed a deep appreciation of how important it is to maintain collaboration and communication between the students within an academic environment. I look forward to acting as representative of our department in the upcoming year and appreciate your consideration for the position. 


2) David Ensing

I am pleased to announce that I will be running for the position of Academic Coordinator of the BGSC for 2014-2015. I bring three years of experience in Student Government at UBC’s Okanagan Campus, serving on the executive councils of the Undergraduate Biology Course Union (during fourth year) and the Biology Graduate Student Society (during my MSc) during its first two years in existence. As a new PhD student here at Queen’s in the Eckert lab, I look forward to further integrating myself in the Biology Graduate program and, should I be elected, bringing my previous experiences to bear on new challenges as your representative.  



Eric Fedosejevs

Hi, I'm Eric, a PhD student in the department. I play sports to stay sane. If elected, this year I will also coordinate sports and whatnots so that other people can stay sane too! If I feel extra ambitious, I may organize a few 'sports' outings -- i.e. canoeing and skiing -- like the cool grad programs do.


Deni Ogunrinde

Hi my name is Deni and I would like to apply for the position of Graduate Committee Representative. Seeing as I have been on the BGSC for a year already I feel that I have a good understanding of departmental functioning.  I  am particularly interested in ensuring that there is  open line of communi cation between the  society and graduate committee  in all relevant concerns and  decisions, especially when it concerns affairs that involve the entire department, such as the Graduate Student Research Day, in which both groups might have different concerns or preferences. In addition, I would like to keep the graduate committee informed on changes to departmental and university policies affecting graduate students.


Sarah Hasnain

I am currently serving as the biograds rep on the RTP committee this year. As part of my mandate,  I served on a promotion committee and a faculty search committee on behalf of Biograds this year and recruited interested students to serve on the joint environmental sciences/biology search committee and field ecologist search committee this year. I would like to continue representing the interests of graduate students on tenure, placement and renewal matters in the coming year. 


Michele Nicholson

I’m new to Queen’s and the Biology Department, and I would like to get involved and make a contribution to the Biograds community. I would like to be considered for the QUBS representative this year. I would be a good candidate for this position because I will be carrying out my field research at QUBS this summer, and will be able to stay tuned in with the people and the various activities taking place at the station. 


1) Courtney Holden

I would like to be considered for the position of SGPS representative. My past experience as Social Coordinator (2012-2013) and Chair (2013-2014) on the BGSC, as well as my 2.5 years spent as a graduate student in the department, has given me a good grasp of the general opinions and concerns of biology graduate students. I think it is important for students to stay connected with the SGPS and be well-informed of matters that might affect us as graduate students on campus. The biology graduate department is one of the smaller departments on campus, and I would like to serve as your liaison to ensure we have a voice within the SGPS too!   



Veronika Wright

I would like to be considered as the Alumni Representative on the BGSC. As one of the Social Coordinators this past academic year, I enjoyed planning events for the department and found that it was a wonderful way to meet other current biology graduate students. However, I believe that it is equally important to maintain relationships with graduates from the department. By contacting alumni, it is my intent to better understand what career opportunities are available and how we can better prepare ourselves during our graduate studies to ensure success in the future.  I hope to plan events where alumni and current students can meet to discuss a wide range of career options (eg. academia, the private sector, the government, other). I am passionate about making the most of our education and I believe that networking beyond our labs is a small way we can ensure that we are making ourselves marketable for the future. Thank you for your consideration.


James Sinclair

 I wish to be considered for the position of Staff and Faculty Rep for a few different reasons. I've always appreciated the effort put in by the BGSC on my behalf in previous years. It is essential for graduate students to have people willing to donate their time and energy to ensure our concerns are represented in various aspects of the Biology department, and I feel as though I can help to continue that same level of service. I'm particularly interested in continuing as the Staff and Faculty Rep as it is a great opportunity to better understand and help communicate the inner workings of the Biology department, and to ensure graduate student perspectives and concerns are always provided to the staff and faculty

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Detailed outlines of job duties can be found in the constitution. If you are interested in running for a position, you must present, to any current member of BGSC, by Monday March 17th, 2014:

1) Written notification of your candidacy, including 5 signatures from other Biograds. You can complete the nomination form here.

2) A short blurb about why you are running for the position. 


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