PACES line-up kicks off with Graduate Boot Camp Workshop

By Layna Edington | 9/30/12 1:07pm

This past weekend PACES kicked off its 2012-2013 schedule with its Graduate Boot Camp Workshop. Graduate Boot Camp was broken into two sessions. “The Basics” informed graduate students of the different opportunities at Grand Valley State University as well as graduate-specific resources offered on campus. The second half of the workshop, titled “Posters and Thesis” focused on the steps necessary to create exemplary research work.

The workshop, held in the University Club where all of the workshops will take place, started off Saturday morning with breakfast. Students were able to eat and mingle before the presentation began. The workshop opened with a welcome from John Stevenson, the Associate Dean of Graduate Studies. Associate Dean Stevenson spoke to the major expectations of graduate education. He mentioned expectations from both the faculty and student point of view, highlighting on the importance of faculty mentorship.

Following the Associate Dean was Amanda Cuevas of the Office of Fellowship. She spoke about the different opportunities for Graduate Students at Grand Valley though her office and their work. Next students were off to a computer lab to learn about research and library skills. The discussion was led by Rita Kohrman of the Seidman Library. Her insight into better practices of researching from a scholarly point of view was greatly appreciated by the students in attendance. Following the Library segment, Patrick Johnson of the Fred Meijer Center for Writing spoke to the students about the services the writing center now has geared specifically for graduate students. From the morning session, students received lunch then it was time for the afternoon session on research as it pertains to graduate students.

To begin the afternoon session, Jeff Potteiger, Dean of Graduate Studies, spoke about thesis and dissertation work of graduate students. Dean Potteiger focused on the importance of choosing your advisor and committee carefully as they will be very involved in your work.

Be sure to be disciplined, as thesis and dissertation work will be mainly self-directed. It is up to the student to create a work they can be proud of. The session ended with a presentation by Associate Dean Stevenson. He spoke about both oral and poster presentations that students may create to display their research work. Overall, the workshop was a great experience for those who participated. Students left with a better understanding of graduate education as a whole and the critical opportunities available to help students achieve their goals and expectations.

Thank you to all those who planned, presented, and attended the first PACES workshop of the year. Be sure to register for the next event, “Critical Conversations: Effective Communication When the Stakes are High”, held in the University Club on October 27, 2012.

*Layna Edington
*_Graduate Student Association_

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