Archive: 2016-2017

Questions Submitted to the "Ask a Dean" Program in the 2016-2017 Academic Year

Academia and Research:

  • How can I find out about the tenure status of one of my minor subject special committee members? Read response
  • How can I provide feedback about the advising I received? Read response
  • How many years will it take to complete my PhD? Read response
  • Can you help me with the automatic enrollment for the research course? Read response
  • Is it normal and/or allowed to have cameras in my lab? Read response
  • How can I effectively reach staff for participation in a research study? Read response
  • Are graduate and professional faculty eligible for GPSA Faculty Awards? Read response
  • How do I switch fields? Read response

Fellowships and Funding:

  • Are there any fellowships that I can combine with my upcoming postdoc appointment? Read response
  • Can I be funded by a TAship and a fellowship at the same time during the summer? Read response
  • Will graduate students on assistantships get the same benefits as employees? Read response
  • Do graduate students have to pay tax on our health insurance? Read the response
  • Can I receive an  assistantship for my fifth year from a department other than my own department? Read the response
  • Why do doctoral fields differ in the years of funding offered to students at the time of admission? Read the response
  • Why are there differences in funding? Read the response
  • Where can I find funding for my second year as a masters student? Read response
  • Are graduate students who are expected to work overtime renumerated? Read response

Health and Wellness:

  • Is there any data to suggest there would be large numbers of students who would participate in the smoking cessation program? Read response
  • Can I extend my health insurance until October 1? Read response
  • Will the Exercise Facility Reimbursement be reinstated? Read response
  • Could the proposed changes to the ACA affect graduate student health insurance at Cornell? Read response
  • Why are there different deadlines for health and dental insurance? Read the response

Policies and Requirements:

  • Why can't I add a first year professor to my special committee? Read response
  • I am in an interdisciplinary field and have several questions. Can you help? Read response
  • Can I list a second advisor on studentcenter for my special committee? Read response
  • Do I need Cornell's permission to use a graduate student's work in a publication? Read response
  • Can you comment on policies regarding romantic/sexual relationships between students and faculty? Read response

Student Experience:

  • Can you tell me if you found my gym bag at Pie with the Deans? Read response


  • What is Cornell's rationale for discriminatory pricing policies for parking? Read response
  • How can graduate students be certain that our deans are actually serving our interests? Read response
  • When will Cornell stand up for free speach and free inquiry? Read response
  • Are students from rural communities underrepresented at Cornell? Read response
  • I wonder if you could share current dean salaries? Read response
  • Why is one of the buildings on campus locked early? Read response
  • Feedback: Thank you for the "Ask a Dean" feature! Read response

Union Representation:

  • If we vote for a union, where will the money come from to pay for the extra benefits? Read response
  • Several questions about the student union design? Read response
  • Is the union allowed to use my name and/or image without my permission? Read response
  • Is the distribution of voters equitable across CGSU's negotiating committees? Read response
  • How did the union representative know where I live? Read response
  • How can the election determine the will of graduate students if eligible students can't vote? Read response
  • Why have the Graduate School's emails become verbose and redundent? Read response
  • If I vote against union representation, will my wishes be recognized? Read response
  • Am I eligible to vote in the upcoming election since I receive a partial stipend? Read response
  • Which email address is correct for the arbitrator? Read response
  • Several concerns about health and safety. Read response
  • Will the GPSA still be able to represent me if Cornell unionizes? Read response
  • Thank you and comment (3/16/17) Read response
  • Thank you and who did you pick for the Final Four? Read response
  • How many of the signatures on the recent CGSU petition represent eligible voters? Read response
  • Is there a reason why the upcoming union election will NOT be held electronically? Read response
  • How important is it to vote? Read response
  • Will Cornell contest the election if the union wins? Read response
  • Are in absentia and fellowship students included in the bargaining unit? Read response
  • How will voting work for students who are working off-campus or at a satellite campus? Read response
  • Thank you #1 (3/13/17) Read response
  • Thank you #2 (3/13/17) Read response
  • Does not voting affect the process the same as voting against? Read response
  • Is there an absentee voting procedure available for the election? Read response
  • Will the Cornell administration respond to questions from pro-union graduate students? Read response
  • Is it legal to un-unionize? Read response
  • Can you offer your perspective on unionization in the modern workforce and how you understand CGSU in this context? Read response
  • Can you tell me about how the dues payment process would work? Read response
  • Comment #1 about Ask a Dean (3/6/17) Read response
  • Comment #2 about Ask a Dean (3/6/17) Read response
  • Comment #3 about Ask a Dean (3/6/17) Read response
  • Should I be concerned about CGSU and their non-Cornell affiliated representatives? Read response
  • What would happen if a graduate student union decided to strike? Read response
  • If there is an election at Cornell, how will it be conducted? Read response
  • Do authorization cards ever expire or are they valid indefinitely? Read response
  • Is there a way to stop unwanted visits from union representatives? Read response
  • How do I remove my name from the At What Cost listserv? Read the response
  • How can I find out more about the Union-Management meeting? Read response
  • Will the union subpoena my information in the spring, if so, how do I opt out? Read response
  • Why are your communications about the union always so biased? Read response
  • Given Columbia's recent election in favor of union representation, what are the differences between Columbia and Cornell? Read response