(COVID-19): Campus Health Updates
5/8/2021 - Daily COVID-19 Graduate Division Update
Dear Graduate Students and Postdocs,
This weekend in the US is Mother’s Day. This can be an incredibly joyful day, and I hope that for those of you who are mothers, act as mothers, have mothers, and want to be with family, that you are able to do so safely. For those of you for whom this is a more complicated day, because of infertility or pregnancy loss, because of a challenging relationship with your own mother, because you are far from loved ones, or for any other reason, sending you all the strength. We are wishing you all a restful Sunday no matter what your life situation.
University of California Graduate Student Experience to be Launched on Monday
We know that the COVID-19 pandemic has made 2020 and the early part of 2021 both unusual and challenging. In response, the University of California is launching the Graduate Student Experience Survey beginning on Monday in an effort to better understand your needs, struggles, and concerns. We want to know what we’re doing well and what we can improve upon. The survey is not mandatory, but we highly encourage you to participate. So please look for it to hit your inboxes on Monday.
What is the UCGSES Survey?
The University of California Graduate Student Experience Survey (UCGSES) is an online survey administered at UC Irvine and all the other graduate UC campuses. UCGSES data is used for many institutional purposes, such as identifying obstacles to graduate success, learning more about financial concerns, and providing student input to faculty and administrators. The results may also be used at an aggregate data level for academic research purposes after obtaining the appropriate IRB approval.
Mental Health Awareness Month
It is mental health awareness month. I know we have talked about wellness on this list before, but I want to make sure you have the resource lists to hand that UCI provides:
- You can always email Phong Luong, who specializes in working with our grad students: firstname.lastname@example.org
Meeting with Professors
We are really fortunate to have Jaymi Smith, our Associate Dean for Student Success, working hard on developing mentoring resources and support all over campus to help advisors and students alike improve their relationships. If you have thoughts, I strongly encourage you to reach out to her or to join her weekly office hours. In the meantime, one thing I get asked about a lot is how to get the most out of meetings with your advisors.
Bad news: Every advisor-advisee relationship is different, so not everything works for everyone.
Good news: There are some good articles out there with some ideas you can try:
- https://blog.r3ciprocity.com/tips-meeting-phd-advisor-graduate-supervisor-actually-work/ (not so sure about the smiling recommendation in this one. For me, I prefer my students to show what they are feeling, whatever it is.)
- https://www.sciencemag.org/careers/2008/06/mastering-your-phd-better-communication-your-supervisor (this one has some good communications stuff in particular)
- For those who prefer videos: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4XuS8x2EIs
Vaccines and Testing
- Vaccine mandates for Fall 2021: If you get vaccinated now, you will be in compliance with the anticipated COVID-19 vaccine mandate for students, staff, and faculty for Fall 2021. More information is available here.
- Campus COVID-19 policies still apply after vaccination: COVID prevention policies remain in effect. The one thing that changes post-vaccine though is you get to be exempted from your weekly testing if you live on campus.
- Upload your vaccine record: Once you get that vaccination, upload your vaccine record to the UCI Student Health Patient Portal to acquire an exemption from weekly Covid testing (14 days after your last dose). Your ZotPass will indicate your vaccinated status and you will then be exempted from weekly Covid testing.
It's that time of year, when many of you are looking for jobs. So, it's a good reminder that Lauren Lyon in the Division of Career Pathways focuses on the needs of grad students in particular: https://career.uci.edu/graduate/
Some other resources that you may find helpful:
Congratulations to Leslie Heid!
Our UCI Grad Slam Champion, Leslie Heid competed in the UC Systemwide Grad Slam Finals this morning. Her performance was incredible and she represented UCI very well! If you missed the live event, you can watch it here: https://youtu.be/mpqMX8TeUrU
Graduate Dean’s Distinguished Lecture Series Event
Graduate Division held our first Graduate Dean’s Distinguished Lecture Series event on Tuesday. I was fortunate enough to host professional leadership coach Greg Campbell and have him talk to the importance of mentoring and different mentoring strategies. His talk was very insightful and may be of use for some of you trying to develop relationships with potential mentors. The link to the presentation is here: https://vimeo.com/524030917
ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit
The ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit convenes leaders from academia, business, and government to
- discuss cutting-edge energy technologies,
- facilitate relationships to move technologies to market, and
- showcase innovations that will advance solutions to current and future energy challenges.
The Student Program is free of charge to all graduate students – to register please visit arpae-summit.com/Students/Student-Program.
- access to student-focused speakers, panel discussions, and networking opportunities,
- observe the main Summit programming when not attending student programming.
- To view the agenda and read more about panel discussions, please visit arpae-summit.com/Students/Student-Program-Agenda.
The NASA Postdoctoral Program
The NASA Postdoctoral Program provides fellowships to conduct cutting-edge research at NASA Centers and NASA-affiliated research institutes. Click here for more information: https://npp.usra.edu/opportunities/
Tax Webinar for International Students
Taxes are a pain no matter who you are, but especially for our international students. The International Center has put on this webinar and resource page that can assist in answering a lot of those frequently asked tax questions: https://ic.uci.edu/resource-pages/international-taxpayer-information.php
REMINDER: Tax Day is now May 17th!
Reminder to Input Personal Email Address in UCPath
All Grad Students should input a personal (home) email (non-UCI) in UCPath if they do not currently have one. This will enable you to retain access in times when you are not on payroll status or after you leave UCI.
- Login to UCPath Online (ucpath.universityofcalifornia.edu)
- On the left look for Employee Actions /Personal Information/Email Addresses or Dashboard Personal Information/Personal Information Summary
- If you only have Business then click Change Email Addresses to add a ‘home’ email address
Continuing Student Fellowships Applications/Nominations Now Open.
- Faculty Mentor Program (FMP)
- President’s Dissertation Year Fellowship (PDY)
- Graduate Dean’s Dissertation Fellowship (GDDF)
For more information about these fellowships, please visit - https://grad.uci.edu/funding/
IT’S YOUR LAST WEEKEND BEFORE THEY ARE DUE:
The Graduate Division deadline for completed nomination packets is 12:00PM (NOON) on Monday, May 10, 2021. Students should be aware of their own school’s internal deadlines to ensure submissions adhere to the Graduate Division’s final deadline. Instructions on submissions from students and schools can be found on the fellowship page and forms.
Questions about the FMP and PDY Fellowships? Contact Craig Farmer, (email@example.com).
Questions regarding GDDF? Contact Celina Mojica (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Spring Up 2021 & #UCISpringUpChallenge
Our 5th Annual Spring Up event just kicked off on Wednesday!
May flowers may be blooming, but so are the deadlines, projects, proposals, and endless data to crunch. It is important to make sure wellness holds a spot on that to-do list. Let’s dust off those healthy habits and SPRING into a strong finish this academic year. It is essential to your health and well-being, including your student success, to continue to build and find community during this continued unprecedented time.
Attend one event or attend them all! There will be gift card prizes given out during each event! We are grateful to have this event sponsored by Associated Graduate Students.
Register on CampusGroups for all Spring Up events.
In addition to the scheduled events, you can also win gift cards by participating in our 2nd Annual #UCISpringUpChallenge Instagram Contest!
To enter in the #UCISpringUpChallenge, you must post a photo on your Instagram that relates to one of the Spring Up #hashtag themes and tag @ucirvinegd and @uciAGS in each post. Get creative! You can spin each post however you see fit. We hope you find inspiration and discover how to expand your network and be digitally connected with one another. Be sure to tag and reach out to your peers, lab mates and even faculty to join in the fun!
Check out the Rules and Regulations before you start posting.
Next Graduate Division Town Hall
May 14th | 3 pm - 4 pm PT - Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at UCI
- A panel of UCI experts will address concerns and campus actions around diversity, equity, and inclusion.
- Register: https://uci.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_Xnvifz-kRaaLqvpq8gxo8A
- Gillian Hayes, Vice Provost, Graduate Education
- Phong Luong Assistant Director, Academic Counseling, Grad Division
- Craig Farmer, Outreach and Retention Coordinator, Grad Division
- Roxy Silver, Associate Director of ADVANCE, Office of Inclusive Excellence
- Miguel Hernandez, Associate Dean of Students, Student Life & Leadership
- Adisa Ajamu, Director, Center for Black Cultures, Resources & Research
- Karen Andrews, Director, Disability Services Center
Please register! Current registrants are 90% faculty and staff, and we really want you, our wonderful students and postdocs, to be there and asking your questions!
STARTING THIS WEEK, These messages will be coming every other week (not every week). I know I know you will miss my droll wit and outdated pop culture references. Somehow, I am confident that you will survive. AND you can always come visit me in office hours anyway. But that means, you get TWO WEEKS of office hours listed this week!
Office Hours (all times Pacific, all sessions half an hour)
Monday, May 10: 11AM, with Dir. of Academic Initiatives Celina Mojica : https://uci.zoom.us/j/7277477057
Tuesday, May 11: Noon with me: https://uci.zoom.us/j/7277477057
Wednesday, May 12: 1PM, with Assoc Dean Rodrigo Lazo: https://uci.zoom.us/j/7277477057
Thursday, May 13: Noon, with Assoc Dean Jaymi Smith: https://uci.zoom.us/j/4520706918
Friday, May 14: 4PM, with me: https://uci.zoom.us/j/7277477057
Monday May 17: Noon, with me: https://uci.zoom.us/j/7277477057
Tuesday, May 18: 3PM with me: https://uci.zoom.us/j/7277477057
Wednesday, May 19: 1PM, with Assoc Dean Rodrigo Lazo: https://uci.zoom.us/j/7277477057
Thursday, May 20: Noon, with Assoc Dean Jaymi Smith: https://uci.zoom.us/j/4520706918
Friday, May 21: 4PM, with me: https://uci.zoom.us/j/7277477057
I have been thinking a lot about just how competitive grad school and postdoc training can be. If you are in a professional program in law, medicine, computing, or another field, you may be fighting for that next big job, that right internship, that right introduction or networking opportunity. If you are an academic scholar, you might be duking it out for grants, fellowships, publications, and book deals. All of this while watching your friends succeed or fail at the same things you are working towards. Oscar Wilde wisely told us that “anybody can sympathise with the suffering of a friend, but it requires a very fine nature to sympathise with a friend’s success.” As we come to the close of the academic year, you will have many opportunities to sympathize with your friends’ successes. I hope you can find a way to do so, and for those of you who have found that right next thing, I hope you can support your colleagues to come along with you.
And when all else fails, check out this pic of the new addition to our household. She’s bound to cheer you up if you are down or make you even happier if you are already feeling good.
[alt text: an eight week old brown and black Rottweiler puppy]
On behalf of the Graduate Division
Kleist Professor of Informatics
Vice Provost for Graduate Education
Dean of the Graduate Division