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Latest Blog Posts

Advancing in Pedagogy: 2020-2021 UTC Testimonials

Most graduate students have come to UCR ready to dive head-first into research and other scholarly pursuits. Yet, many of us find ourselves treading water in the deep end of the teaching pool. Such a challenge inspires brave graduate students to take their pedagogical skills and training to the next level. The University Teaching Certificate...
By Kyla Rankin |

Advice on Campus Reopening

Lots of universities have announced plans to reopen their campuses next fall after more than a year of virtual instruction amid the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes the University of California system; with COVID-19 vaccines available to students, faculty, and staff, our campus also announced that it plans to bring most students to campus for in-person...
By Ruihan Lu | | Advice, Wellness

A Few Quick Ways to Improve Your Day

Unclench your jaw. [Image Description: Pumba, from The Lion King, drops his jaw.] Pictured: Pretty much every time I ask myself, “Is my jaw clenched?” – the answer is yes, yes it is, relax that jaw right now… While you’re at it, you might use your fingers or knuckles to give yourself a face massage...
By Jessica Tingle | | Advice, Wellness

Cultivating Social Support Networks in the Virtual Classroom

In social support literature, there are three types of social support networks: informational, instrumental, and emotional.1 All networks are reflective of relationships. Informational social support networks are relationships through which information is disseminated. Instrumental social support networks are relationships that provide direct and tangible support—whether that be through actions or physical resources. And, emotional social...
By Elizabeth Bogumil | | Teaching, Advice

GradSuccess is Hiring!

It’s that time of year again…if it’s Spring Break, then the GradSuccess hiring application must be open! [Image Description: Puppies sleep surrounded by white rabbits and chicks on grass. There are Easter Egg baskets in the background.] Pictured: A bountiful pool of prospective applicants...you know you want to be part of this future team Read...
By Hillary Jenks | | Job Search

Using Student Evaluations to Improve Teaching

Do you read the student evaluations of your teaching at the end of each quarter? If you said no, I’m here to convince you otherwise! First, student evaluations are a key part of how we are assessed as TAs at UCR; low evaluation scores can have consequences for future TA appointments. Also, student evaluations are...
By Sarah Murray | | Teaching, Advice

Conferencing Like You Mean It

Conferences are one of the most important ways to make human connections within our fields. But getting the most out of a conference requires us to put ourselves out there in a way that can feel awkward, intimidating, and downright uncomfortable. For introverts and extroverts alike, having a conference strategy can greatly improve one’s chances...
By Jessica Tingle | | Advice

Think Outside the Box: Different Career Paths for Graduate Students

Are you excited about what you learned during the Career Pathways Week and want to explore different career paths? Then you're in luck! We invited Yige Li, who started her own business as an international graduate student at UCR, to share her insights, experience, and advice on being a student entrepreneur. [Image Description: Yige Li...
By Songling Chen and Yige Li |

Looking Back on Career Pathways Week

After Grad: Academic Pathways Week came and went like a high-speed train, but the lessons it imparted will last forever. Join me as I give a short summary of what I and other graduate students learned from this week-long series of panels, presentations, and workshops designed to support graduate students and postdocs who are taking...
By Kristoffer Ekroll | | Professionalization, Advice

International Students’ Mental Health

COVID has spread and cause lots of tragedy in the US and around the world for almost a year. While the situation is difficult for everyone, things are particularly serious for international students who are studying abroad and far away from their families. The pressure not only coming from the living landscape but also from...
By Ruihan Lu | | Advice, Wellness

Making the Most of Working From Home

In this time where we are all working from home, being mentally and physically present with yourself is important. It is also crucial to recognize when zoom fatigue hits. I highly suggest reading my colleague’s piece on boundary-making for her advice on self-care, which touches on these very topics. What I want to add to...
By Jamiela Kokash | | Advice, Professionalization

After Grad: Career Pathways Week Is Almost Here

Are you interested in pursuing a career outside of traditional academia? Do you ever wonder what kinds of opportunities there are outside of the confines of the campus? Do you want to understand more clearly what “transferable skills” you have attained by earning your degree? Then After Grad: Career Pathways Week is for you! CPW...
By Kristoffer Ekroll | | Professionalization, Advice

Being a Graduate Student Parent

"Have babies in graduate school," a female professor suggested to me at a department seminar reception during my time in graduate school. She advised that graduate school is the best time for students pursuing an academic career to have their babies. A survey conducted by Harvard University shows more than one-in-twenty graduate students are also...
| Advice, Wellness

Boundary-Making as Strategic Self Care

Why are boundaries important for graduate students? How is boundary-making a form of self-care? And, along these lines, what does it mean to be strategic? Before diving into these questions, I offer an anecdote about how I came to value the importance of boundaries. First-Year Lessons Coming into the Critical Dance Studies Ph.D. program, fresh...
By Magnolia Yang Sao Yia | | Advice, Wellness

Plato, Education and the Path to Social Justice

Education has long been considered of paramount importance when it comes to achieving social justice. While modern-day learning institutions have increasingly supported social justice by empowering students and actively engaging with discourses surrounding issues of systemic injustice, the relationship between education and social justice has been acknowledged since ancient times, tracing its origin in the...
By Maxwell McCoy | | Teaching, Advice

Trauma-Informed Teaching: Path to Student Success

Trauma is any harmful life experience leaving long-lasting effects on our physical, emotional, and social needs. Research indicates an alarming number of college students have experienced trauma in their lives. The learning process in traumatized students is significantly impaired since they spend most of their time and energy processing their trauma. Therefore, they do not...
By Ariana Sabzeghabae | | Teaching, Advice, Wellness

What is Mindfulness and How Can We Incorporate it in The Classroom

We have all had the experience of trying to finish one task while having so many more tasks that need to be completed. We are so distracted by everything around us that it causes us to feel overwhelmed and even more stressed. Recently I watched a Ted Talk by Andy Puddicombe on the idea of...
By Aya Shhub | | Wellness

A Few of Our Favorite Things

When I was younger my mum and I loved to watch old movies together. One of our favorites was The Sound of Music. If you’re not familiar, The Sound of Music is a Rodgers and Hammerstein movie musical in which a free-spirited novitiate named Maria is asked to serve as a governess for a wealthy...
By Sarah Murray | | Wellness

Reflections on what it means to facilitate social distanced wellness

Fall of 2020 proved to be a big challenge for the entire graduate student body. Hours upon hours of screen time through Zoom or other platforms gave rise to a feeling of exhaustion and isolation. But fear not, for the Graduate Student Resource Center (GSRC) is continuing our regular wellness programming in an online world...
By Kristoffer Ekroll | | Wellness, Events

Highlights from After Grad: Academic Pathways Week!

GradSuccess held its annual professional development event focused on the academic job market in Week 7 of the Fall 2020 term. Given the scheduling challenges of the pandemic and the universal onset of Zoom fatigue, we chose this year to spread out the panels, workshops, clinics, and keynotes over a full week instead of having...
By Hillary Jenks | | Advice, Professionalization