About Us

Meet Your Bargaining Team and Coordinating Committee

I’m a PhD in the Computer Science department. I also went to PSU for my undergraduate (B.S. in Molecular Biology). My main interest is in developing improved mathematical techniques for describing what computer programs are supposed to do, and for verifying that they actually do it correctly.

Like other graduate employees, I work hard to balance my studies and my employment. But the fact that I’m a student shouldn’t diminish my rights as an employee. PSU should eliminate fees that graduate employees have to pay to take classes and stay employed, and more competitively negotiate and subsidize healthcare. I’d also like to see an improvement in the transparency and timeliness of the appointment process, full-time pay for students whose jobs force them to work full time, and better access to private workspaces. Now that we’re a union, we need to work out a contract that will ensure that our situation will improve — so I’m doing what I can to help.

In my scant spare time, I like to play the piano, watch TV, and play tabletop role-playing games with friends.

TED COOPER – Bargaining Team, Coordinating Committee
Ted is a fourth-year Computer Science
PhD student, working at the intersection of programming languages and concurrency. He has been involved in GEU since the beginning of 2015, and currently works on the Coordinating Committee and the Bargaining Team. He can be found walking with his cats through Sunnyside, picking rosemary, lemon mint, and russian sage.

JAMES LOHMAN – Coordinating Committee, Contract and Bylaws
James Lohman, a
Ph.D. student in the chemistry department, does research regarding Rhodamine derivative Tellurium dyes and their Photochemical/Electrochemical applications (clean, cheap energy, in short) for the McCormick lab here at PSU. He believes in the concept of activism and unity in representing the needs of graduate employees on all levels, and strives to always leave things in a better place than he found them. The GEU, and hold a position with the Coordinating Committee, gives the opportunity to play a part in improvement on a greater scale than he has in the past. James is a student, employee, father, and extremely amateur DIYer.

JENNIFER MUTHANNA – Coordinating Committee
Jennifer is a
Ph.D. student in the School of Social Work. Her research interests include adoption and post-adoption related issues, feminisms, and social justice. She is an international student (from Canada). She spent a number of years as a social worker in the UK and was active in unions there. Jennifer became involved in the GEU in November 2015 and currently sits on the Coordinating Committee, the Equity Committee, and the Constitution and By-Laws Committee. She spends her time working, having dinner parties, driving back and forth to Portland (from Canada), and procrastinating (she STILL hasn’t started writing her dissertation proposal).

ANDRÉS OSWILL – Bargaining Team, Coordinating Committee
Andrés is a member of the GEU Coordinating Committee and Bargaining Team. He’s a second year Master of Urban and Regional Planning Student specializing in Land Use and Equity Planning. He enjoys Nicki Minaj, beaches, and drag queens. He cares about money, especially how much it costs to live in the Portland Metro and how little Graduate Assistants get.

KYLE RUSH – Coordinating Committee, Contract Action Team
Kyle Alexander Rush is a Masters Student in Communication Studies. He graduated with his Bachelors of Science degree in both Communication Studies and Public Policy Administration with a concentration in Corrections/Law Enforcement. He works as a Graduate Teaching Assistant, a grader within his department, and as a server on weekends. He focuses on Political Communication, and Social Change and is working on a thesis regarding media effects with regard to presidential news coverage, debates, and inaugural addresses. Kyle got involved with GEU because he discovered working conditions across campus that were not being addressed and he wanted to use his event planning and social activism experience to assist with this great cause, and also has enjoyed getting to know a wide variety graduate employees from across the entire campus which he would have never met otherwise.

PHILIP TOSTADO – Coordinating Committee, Communications Committee
Philip is a second year Master’s student in Sociology. He mostly studies mental illness, race, and subcultures. He became involved in the union because he believes unions are essential to ensuring the rights of workers are protected. He cares about reducing fees–especially the healthcare fee–and job security. In his free time (when he can find some), he enjoys writing, sleeping, and watching reality television.

EMILY WIANT – Bargaining Team, Coordinating Committee
Hello! I am Emily Wiant. I have been involved with GEU for about a year now. I am currently serving on the Coordinating Committee and the Bargaining Team. I am a second year Master of Public Administration student. Currently, I am the Graduate Assistant working with the EMPA program in the Center for Public Service. I assist with marketing and outreach, data management, student affairs/recruitment, and I provide administrative/classroom support to the faculty, student, and staff of the program.

The main reason for my involvement with the union is to better the working conditions of my fellow workers. I am interested in increasing the minimum stipends for GA’s. Additionally, I am hoping to create a procedure for shared governance. We, as Graduate Assistants, should have a voice in the decisions that affect our working conditions.

In my personal time, I enjoy film photography, board games and trivia, coffee, and traveling, both nationally and internationally.