Written by Christina Malatzky, Postgraduate Portfolio Leader:
In November 2015, during my first visit to Cairns (I will be back, it was glorious) I was delighted to meet so many of TASA’s postgraduate members in person at the Annual Postgraduate Day. The room was full, extra chairs and a table were needed and after some initial, nightmarish (!) ‘IT difficulties’ I think the day went exceptionally well. I would like to thank all those who attended, participated, and presented for making the day a success. Plans are beginning for this year’s Postgraduate Day and all ideas are genuinely welcome.
There were also some important decisions made by TASA’s Executive in November that will be of particular interest to our postgraduate members. The TASA Executive voted to trial holding the November Executive Committee meeting on the Sunday prior to the Annual TASA Conference so that it does not run parallel to the Postgraduate Day. This will mean that the Postgraduate Portfolio Leader (and, in fact, all members of the Executive) will be able to dedicate their whole time and attention to the Postgraduate Day and to representing the views and interests of TASA’s postgraduate members in the Executive meeting, rather than weaving in and out of both events. Further, in an effort to better support early career members of TASA, the Executive voted to introduce a new prize for the Most Distinguished Peer-Reviewed Article Published by an Early Career Researcher to provide more opportunities for early career sociologists to gain recognition for the quality of their scholarship and enhance their reputations, especially within interdisciplinary teams. The TASA Executive also initiated the formation of a working group led by Associate Professor Kristen Natalier (Treasurer), Dr Dan Woodman (Vice President) and myself to investigate how best to support and advocate for the interests of sociologists employed on casual contracts.
For those of you who are keen to further the interests of your fellow postgraduates in TASA, and serve the discipline of sociology in Australia, a call for expressions of interest for new members of the postgraduate sub-committee is likely to go out sometime in July, so please keep your eyes out for this opportunity!