- How do you support undergraduate teaching with Ph.D. requirements as well?
- How do you get high-quality graduate students to come?
- How do address graduate student morale and work ethics?
- How to establish a Ph.D. program?
- How to increase graduate program while maintaining a "standard" geology undergraduate program?
- How to recruit students when you can't offer a competitive financial package?
- Why are students coming to graduate school anyway?
Themes to focus on:
Two broad questions:
- Improve numbers and quality of applicants?
- How to foster a "traditional" graduate culture?
What are some examples of departmental efforts in this area?
- College provides funds for a graduate recruitment weekend to fly graduate students in for a Thurs, Fri, Sat experience; >50% of applicants who participate in this weekend enroll.
- *Advisors networking for their students.*
- Professional meetings: brochures, "gimmes," booths at GSA (applicants say they met people at GSA).
- Booths: not clear how well they work; if you're going to do it, make sure that it's done well; students & staff are probably more effective than faculty in terms of staffing the booth.
- Website indicating "where are our graduate students now?"
- Field trip with current students, faculty, alums and faculty from other institutions (networking).
Assessing these efforts:
- Need to collect data to find out from the current graduate students:
- how they heard about the program;
- why they chose to apply to the program.
What are some ideas for making this work better?
- Webpage for graduate students:
- prospective students
- information for current students
- get current students to post information about their current research
- Make sure that undergraduates test-drive any web site that could be visited by prospective graduate students.
- Website: include news, current events, makes the department more exciting for outsiders.
- Make sure you track alums yourself; the institution may not want to release the information.
To foster "appropriate" culture:
- - require graduate students to participate in an annual field trip
- - weekly coffee hour on Mondays; weekly seminar on Fridays
- - graduate students sign up for course credit for colloquium; attendance is taken
- - graduate students are required to give talks in department colloquium
- - need to be consequences for not attending weekly seminar
- - offer 3 or 4 summer fellowships for grad students (combination of institutional and dept. funding); only students who are active and constructive members of the community (attending seminars, etc.) will be considered for fellowships.
- -make graduate students as much a part of the dept. as possible: arrange opportunities for faculty to listen to graduate students
- -regularly scheduled meetings where faculty *listen* to graduate students
- -graduate student lounge (all sciences can use it; centrally located if the institution doesn't have numbers to support a lounge for each department)
- -integrate "full-time" grads with "part-time" grads using field trips, evening (4:00ish) seminars, etc., so that the non-traditional students are able to participate if they want to
- -requiring a graduate student seminar their first year; different faculty teach it each year; but all first-year students must take it 1st semester.
- -start first semester with an overnight field trip
- -give graduate students a document of "graduate student expectations"
- -teach a "research methods" class that all graduate students take (to produce graduate student research proposal as end product) as early as possible
- -required first-year sequence: 1st semester = field trips, papers, etc.; 2nd semester = write your research proposal!
- -communal suffering can help to foster culture!
What resources regarding this topic would you want to see on the website?
- -Statements of graduate student expectations
- -Links to department webpages
- -Links to information about first-year graduate courses
- -Bullet lists of recruitment, promotion
- -Bullet lists of ideas about how to promote a graduate student culture.
What is your plan for the future?
- -Potential workshop on M.S. programs (recruitment, retention, programs, etc.).
- -Learn from graduate students why they're coming to graduate school, and what their expectations and needs are.
- -Workshops on graduate programs in general... Ways to help graduate students, recruit them, foster culture, etc.