Fonds MG 4292 - Post-Graduate Students' Society Fonds

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Post-Graduate Students' Society Fonds

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  • Textual record
  • Graphic material

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CA MUA MG 4292

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  • 1960-2011 (Creation)
    McGill University. Post-Graduate Students' Society

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Physical description

10.5 m of textual records and other materials

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Administrative history

The Post-Graduate Students Society of McGill University was founded in 1908 to represent graduate students of the downtown campus of McGill University. The Society came into its own as an independent entity recognized by the University in 1991 after successful disunion from the Student Society’s of McGill University (SSMU). Forty years prior, in 1951, the Dean of Graduate Studies, David L. Thomson, initiated a trust fund to provide space on campus for graduate students. This fund remains in existence today, administered by the Society’s President as the Thomson House Trust Fund (THTF) whose purpose remains ‘to complete occupancy of the House.’

The Society was originally an affiliated constituency of the SSMU much like the current day faculty-specific undergraduate societies (SUS, EUS, AUS). Although affiliated with SSMU, it began its occupancy of the Charles Edouard Gravel House in 1968 when it was purchased by the University to house the German Department, Management Institute and to provide a graduate student space. To mark the thirtieth anniversary of the Trust Fund in 1971, the House was renamed to honour Dean Thomson.

The Society became a member of the Canadian Federation of Students (CFS) between 1991 and 1995. The Society was also a founding member of a graduate network named Regroupement des associations des cycles supérieures du Québec (RACSQ) which merged into the Fédération des Étudiant(e)s Universitaires du Québec (FEUQ) and its Conseil Nationale des cycles supérieurs in 1994. In February 1992, the Association of Graduate Students Employed at McGill (AGSEM) was duly constituted following a resolution of the Society’s then standing TA Committee.

After five years of operation as an independent Society, and almost thirty years of occupancy in the House, a vision project was initiated by the 1996-97 Executive. Though much of the text of the current Statutes remains true to wording in effect prior to 1991, a rigorous project was undertaken to revise the Statues, following the resolutions of the “Vision Document” created in 1997. In addition to significant changes to the Society Statues, this process created the forum, and subsequent momentum to address the survival and overall performance of the Society.

By 2001, a post-disunion fee agreement was renewed with the SSMU. In 2002, following their formal integration into the University, postdoctoral fellows were added to the Society’s constituency with a growing constituency of approximately 300 members (now over 500). The position of Equity Commissioner was created to alleviate the growing weight of the VP Academic’s portfolio.

By 2003, the Society had increased its Council participation rate by 300% over five years and began reconsidering its affiliation with the CFS on the basis of ineffective provincial component representation but also in the spirit of transparency; that standing fees and affiliations be subject to renewal. The Society successfully hosted the Canadian Graduate Student Leadership Conference in September 2003. In 2004, major Statute revisions were brought to address fee collection and recognition brought upon by new clauses added to the Memorandum of Agreement with the University as renegotiated in 2003-04. Further, the culture of the operations of Thomson House was altered significantly by the Council-initiated tobacco ban in January 2004.

Custodial history

The fonds was accumulated beginning in 1908 by members of the Society. The fonds was stored at Thomson House, scattered throughout the premises, after which it was concentrated at the Coach House, and donated to McGill University Archives in 2012.

Scope and content

The Post-Graduate Students' Soceity of McGill University (PGSS) fonds consists of the corporate records, including correspondence, meeting minutes, reports, pamphlets, and other administrative records from 1960-2011.

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Immediate source of acquisition

Deposited by Adrian Kaats, 12 April 2012


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  • English
  • French
  • Spanish

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General note

Inventory list available

Physical description

Includes approximately 300 photographs, 137 computer discs (5.25"), 28 computer discs (3.5"), 1 zip disc, 6 audio cassettes, 7 VHS tapes, 1 sign and 1 framed cartoon.

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Accession nos.

0000-2473; 2015-0088

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Dates of creation, revision and deletion

Rachel Black 25/09/2018

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