Graduate Student Senate (GSS) is a student-run, elected, and financed governance body at UMass Amherst. We represent and advocate on behalf of graduate students with the other university governance bodies, administration, committees and councils, and board of trustees. GSS provides a variety of programming, events, resources, and opportunities to enhance the graduate student experience. Graduate Student Organizations (GSOs) are recognized and supported by GSS.
The GSS is composed of three elected officers, senators elected by individual departments and programs who meet regularly, and staff who manage its day to day operations. These include the functioning of the Senate, the funding and facilitation of graduate student organizations (GSOs) and the administration of various programs funded through the GSS such as the Child Care Assistance Program and the Graduate Women’s Network. The GSS also supports and partially funds other university-wide programs and offices that are used by graduate students such as the Student Legal Services Office, the Office of Family Resources, the Center for Women and Community, the Student Union Art Gallery, the Student Union Craft Center, and the Student Organization Resource Center (SORC).
The GSS also nominates, elects and appoints graduate students to serve on campus-wide committees and councils constituted by the Faculty Senate and other governance bodies that play a major role in university administration and policies.
The GSS is wholly funded by graduate students themselves through the Graduate Senate Tax. This fee is set by the Senate and approved by the University’s Board of Trustees.
GSS Officers' Rights and Responsibilities
See the Senator Handbook for more information on GSS officers' rights and responsibilities.