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April 2022 Message from Dean Mayo

Interdisciplinary GAships provide graduate students an opportunity to explore special interest areas beyond their graduate programs while gaining academic and professional development experience.”

Kelly E. Mayo
Walter and Jennie Bayne Professor of Molecular Biosciences, Dean of The Graduate School and Associate Provost for Graduate Education

Dear Members of The Graduate School (TGS) Community,

Spring Quarter is a time for renewal as we look forward to warmer weather, the end of the academic term, and Graduation Weekend. It is also notable because we were able to celebrate Graduate Student Appreciation Week earlier this month. We appreciate our graduate community and I would like to thank everyone involved in this celebration.

One of the things that makes Northwestern stand out and contributes to our global reputation is our interdisciplinary scholarship and robust collaborations. Much of our cutting-edge research and creative endeavors emerge at the intersections of distinct disciplines. TGS is proud to contribute to unique learning experiences through formal and informal opportunities that are often interdisciplinary in nature, including clusters and certificates, training grants, and interdisciplinary graduate assistantships (GAships).

Interdisciplinary GAships provide graduate students an opportunity to explore special interest areas beyond their graduate programs while gaining academic and professional development experience. Twenty-four campus partners across the University host GAships, with focuses that include unique research opportunities, organizing programs, coordinating conferences, researching policies, managing projects, and mentoring undergraduates. For the 2022–23 academic year, PhD and MFA students are eligible to be funded on these assistantships in their third through seventh year.

TGS and campus partners often innovate through evolution of our interdisciplinary GAship offerings. In 2022–23, there will be an expanded focus on social justice, access, and equity. The Northwestern Prison Education Program (NPEP) will offer limited funding for PhD students engaged in teaching incarcerated students in Illinois. Additionally, the Center for Civic Engagement (CCE) has partnered with the Black Metropolis Research Consortium (BMRC) to embed PhD students within Chicagoland cultural organizations to support projects that preserve and amplify Black histories. We look forward to following the exciting activities of these new interdisciplinary GAships.

TGS also is piloting a new application portal and how-to guide for all available GAships, thanks to the work of Assistant Director for Academic Programs Stephanie Brehm, who is overseeing these GAships. Applications for next academic year are due by Friday, April 29 at 5:00 PM CDT. We look forward to your feedback on this streamlined system and hope you will apply for these incredible opportunities. These exciting research, learning, and scholarly intersections push us to think critically and encounter new skills.

Our mission is to support graduate students and postdoctoral trainees in their academic and co-curricular experiences, including the many opportunities in interdisciplinary spaces.

My best wishes to you throughout the Spring Quarter.
 
Sincerely,
Kelly
 
Kelly E. Mayo
Walter and Jennie Bayne Professor of Molecular Biosciences
Dean of The Graduate School and
Associate Provost for Graduate Education


Dean's Monthly Recognition

In continuing the monthly tradition, I would like to recognize an individual or group who represents excellence in supporting the graduate and postdoctoral experience at Northwestern.

ruth-martin-curry.jpgThis April, I am pleased to recognize Ruth Martin Curry ’19 PhD, a postdoctoral scholar at the Center for Civic Engagement (CCE), where she directs the Center’s programming for graduate students. Ruth has launched a number of new initiatives to connect students to the wider Chicago area, including a practicum program for humanities PhDs, an oral history project in partnership with Shorefront Legacy Center, and a public writing workshop. This year, with support from TGS and a Racial Equity and Community Partnership grant, she and a team of Northwestern staff, graduate students, and community partners are launching the Black Metropolis Graduate Assistantship (BMGA) program. Thank you to Ruth and the entire CEE team for your exceptional support of our graduate community.

Categories: From the Dean