UNCG Graduate Student Life & Professional Development


Graduate Student Life

GradShare — Where graduate students help each other succeed.
Phinished — A discussion and support group for people trying to finish their dissertations or theses, and those who have been there.

GradHacker – A blog featured on Inside Higher Ed – Inside Higher Ed is the free daily news Web site for people who work in higher education. Breaking news, lively commentary and thousands of job postings bring more than 800,000 people to the site each month. See GradHacker’s latest entry on Thriving in a Pressure Cooker: Building Strong Support Networks (Nov. 6, 2012).

Productive Writer - Do you have writing goals for your thesis or dissertation in the new year? Have you resolved to be a more productive writer in 2013? If so, join our community of writers by subscribing to the Productive Writer listserv to receive emails twice a month with advice and strategies for becoming a more productive writer.  Sponsored by the Cornell Graduate School, the Productive Writer is free and open to all, especially graduate students writing papers, proposals, theses, and dissertations. It’s easy to join; just click on this link.

Later this month you will begin receiving messages, every other week, about managing your time for greater writing productivity, reducing distractions, staying motivated, revising and editing, binge writing, communicating with your advisor, dealing with writer’s block , and managing procrastination and perfectionistic tendencies.

We hope you will join us to become a more productive writer.


Professional Development

for UNCG Graduate Students


Graduate School Workshops


Registration information for most workshops (unless otherwise specified below) can be found by visiting:


To view descriptions of previously offered professional development workshops for graduate students, click here.



 Recorded Workshops

  •   To Borrow or Not To Borrow? Student Loans and You

Panel discussion with:

Dora Gicheva     (Economics, UNC Greensboro) – d_gichev@uncg.edu

William Harden (Accounting and Finance, UNC Greensboro) – bill_harden@uncg.edu

John Lucas         (Financial Aid Office, UNC Greensboro) – jslucas@uncg.edu

Ken Snowden     (Economics, UNC Greensboro) – snowden@uncg.edu

 Earlier this year total student loan debt grew to more than $1 trillion in the U.S. and is now larger than the nation’s total credit card debt!  With tuition rising and family finances strained, the volume of debt is likely to continue growing.  This panel discussion will cover several basic themes graduate students should consider when using student loans, including:

  • How does student loan debt affect future income, employment and marriage prospects? (for an example of this, read NPR’s July 16th story here)
  • How should a student assess the “true cost” of a student loan?
  • How are student loans different from other types of debt?
  • Is it possible to take out “too little” as well as “too much” student loan debt?

The panel is composed of faculty and staff who teach, do research, and lecture on topics related to debt in general and student loan debt in particular.  The session is not designed to provide individual counseling, but to inform all students about the questions and issues you need to confront before taking out a student loan with a counselor or on your own.

Recorded Session

The recorded session may be downloaded here. Please note that you will need to download the Oracle program in order to open this recorded session to hear audio and view the presentation. The session will open in Blackboard Collaborate.



  • Practical Strategies for Writing a Thesis or Dissertation

The Graduate School organized a panel discussion with three faculty writing experts to discuss writing a thesis or dissertation. Topics include: qualities of effective advisors and how to select helpful, qualified advisors; the role and importance of an effective mentoring relationship; the value of academic peers and social networks; knowing what good writing and scholarly habits are and learning how to develop them; distinguishing a good academic topic of research or inquiry from a less fruitful one; deciding what to include in your writing and what to leave out; how not to get bogged down, etc.

The panelists for this workshop were Dr. Kelly Ritter, Department of English; Dr. Paul Silvia, Department of Psychology; and Dr. Carol Mullen, Department of Educational Leadership and Cultural Foundations.

Practical Strategies panel

Practical Strategies for Writing a Thesis or Dissertation – audio recording

Kelly Ritter:

At the time of recording, Kelly Ritter was an associate professor of English at UNCG, where she also directed the first-year composition program. She has been the editor for College English, the flagship journal of the National Council of Teachers of English. Kelly’s books include Before Shaughnessy: Basic Writing at Yale and Harvard, 1920-1960 (SIU Press, 2009), Who Owns School? Authority, Students, and Online Discourse (Hampton Press, 2010) and To Know Her Own History: Writing at the Woman’s College, 1943-1963 (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2012). Currently she administers the Writing Program at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Carol A. Mullen:

At the time of recording, Carol A. Mullen was professor and chair of Educational Leadership & Cultural Foundations at UNCG. She specializes in mentoring, diversity, and innovations in learning and professional development within the leadership field across higher education and K–12 settings. Her doctoral courses focus on academic writing using a studio approach. Carol was editor of the Mentoring & Tutoring: Partnership in Learning journal. She has authored more than 200 refereed journal articles and book chapters and 15 books. Her edited and authored books include Write to the Top and The SAGE Handbook of Mentoring and Coaching in Education.  Currently she directs the School of Education at Virginia Tech and is the associate dean for professional education in the College of Liberal Arts and Human Sciences.

Paul Silvia:

Paul Silvia is an associate professor of Psychology. He received his PhD in Psychology from the University of Kansas and taught at the University of Hamburg in Germany before joining UNCG. He is the author of How to Write A Lot: A Practical Guide to Productive Academic Writing, published in 2007 by the American Psychological Association, as well as four other books.


 Fall 2014 Workshops

Show me the Money – A Guide to and Through Grant-Seeking Databases – Friday 9/05, 1.00-2.00 pm, 304 Curry, UNCG. To register visit: http://workshops.uncg.edu/sign-up/?wks_sch_id=33019483

Session on Thursday 9/18, 10.00-11.00 am, 304 Curry, UNCG. To register visit: http://workshops.uncg.edu/sign-up/?wks_sch_id=33019484

Faculty and graduate students often require external funding for research, scholarship, and creative activity. This workshop will explore how to get the most from grant seeking databases, including SPIN, GrantSelect, Grant Advisor Plus, and the Foundation Center. SPIN is a new addition, and we will offer two “SPIN only” workshops in September. The October workshops will provide training on all funding search tools at UNCG. Participants learn to search for possible funding opportunities, practice identifying eligibility, and realize the importance of key words. Attendees will have opportunities to access databases and engage in searches related to their topic of interest.


Copyright or Copywrong? – Wednesday 9/10, 2.00-3.00 pm, Bluford Library 258, NCAT

(Available to Preparing Future Leaders participants.) Freeware vs. Shareware. Public Domain vs. Open-Source. Plagiarism vs. Citing. With all of information available, what is right and what is wrong in the world of copyright laws and fair use? This workshop will help you navigate current legislation and common practices to avoid plagiarism. To register visit: https://spreadsheets.google.com/viewform?formkey=dE9STjhKN19kalRKU1Z6bVdlT3pUd0E6MQ


Grant Search Tools – Thursday 9/18, 3.00-4.30 pm, Bluford Library 258, NCAT

(Available to Preparing Future Leaders participants.) Where do you look for your funding opportunities? The Bluford Library team will show you two great search tools for finding and tracking grant announcements: InfoEd’s SPIN and COS’s PIVOT. While SPIN and PIVOT won’t write your grants for you, they provide great starting points for exploring potential funding sources and keeping track of changes in grant solicitations. To register visit: https://spreadsheets.google.com/viewform?formkey=dE9STjhKN19kalRKU1Z6bVdlT3pUd0E6MQ


Grant Resources – UNCG FTLC – Wednesday 9/24, 3.00-4.00 pm, UNCG Faculty Center

A monthly linked workshop series hosted by the FTLC which focuses on tactics to obtain external grant funding. Topics include creating long-range research plans, effective searches for funding opportunities, persuasive grant writing, and even compelling budgets. We will discuss everything from small pilot projects to large multidisciplinary collaborations. Open to new and experienced participants. Meetings are typically the fourth Wednesday of each month at 3:00PM in the Faculty Center. Registration optional.


Human Subjects Research Training – Office of Research Integrity – Friday 9/26 from 9am-12pm., EUC Dogwood Room
Attendees earn Human Subjects Certificate to meet FWA assurance. Register to attend at https://workshops.uncg.edu- Just click “View all workshops offered” and search for “Human Subjects Research Training” – Note: Once you have clicked “view all workshops offered,” you may need to change the“show scheduled workshops” to 3 months. Flyer attached.


Slippery Slope Series: Conflict of Interest – Friday 10/03, 12.00-1.15 pm, EUC Dogwood, UNCG

Underneath the conduct of research, development of new lines of scholarship, and generation of creative works lie innovation, collaboration, and exploration. These processes sometimes lead to the building of relationships that can benefit the work at hand but can also present the possibility for conflict of interest (COI). This presentation will provide an overview of this much misunderstood concept, with an emphasis on the federal, state, and local regulations related to COI and on the implications of COI for research integrity. To register visit: http://workshops.uncg.edu/sign-up/?wks_sch_id=33019438


Graduate School – Upcoming Workshops in calendar format


Career Services for Graduate Students

Marketable, Practiced, Networked

We help all UNCG students, including graduate students, make critical decisions about their academic and life path and prepare students to translate their UNCG success to post-graduation success.   We do this by providing services and resources that will help them create a strong career brand and develop a plan of action to reach those career goals.  These services and resources help develop job search skills that can be used throughout one’s lifetime. In addition, the office maintains a robust series of events and connections to employers from a variety of industries, as well as graduate programs, for our students to build strong professional networks.

Career Team Access: we have a group of 14 Career Team members who are available Mondays – Fridays, 10am – 5pm, to assist you with career readiness topics such as resume development, industry information, cover letters, interview skills, job and internship search planning, and more.  No appointment needed – just walk in! We also have an electronic resume drop box. You can now send your resume to resumedb@uncg.edu. Please allow 5-7 days for revision and feedback. The resume drop box is for basic resume review only, not CVs or other lengthy documents.

Individual Career Advising:  as a UNCG student you are entitled to 1:1 career advising sessions to provide more personalized assistance in defining your personal brand and developing the appropriate marketing materials to support it. Our professionally trained career staff members have specific educational background in career development processes and strategies, have over 40+ years of combined experience in the field, and are in constant contact with employers. Feel free to call the front desk (334-5454) to set up an appointment with a career adviser. 

Career Branding: we work with you on this concept to guide you in defining and managing your career goals by assisting you to articulate your personal brand, and then translate your brand into all facets of professional life, including job search strategies.

Special Programming: Throughout the semester, our office sponsors a number of special workshops and events that are for all students.  Please visit our newly revised website for events and other helpful information:  www.uncg.edu/csc/