2016 Awards for Excellence in Graduate Education

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The 2016 winners for the Awards for Excellence in Graduate Education. The Graduate School coordinates annual award programs to honor outstanding individuals. These awards are generously underwritten by the University Co-op.

Student Awards

Outstanding Dissertation
Area – Humanities and Fine Arts

Ben_Breen_85x85Benjamin Breen, PhD
Tropical Transplantations: Drugs, Nature, and Globalization in the Portuguese and British Empires, 1640 – 1755″
Department of History, College of Liberal Arts
Supervisor: Jorge Canizares-Esguerra

Area – Social Sciences, Business, and Education

Daniel_McCormack_85x85Daniel McCormack, PhD
Protection From Themselves: The Domestic Consequences Of International Hierarchy”
Department of Government, College of Liberal Arts
Supervisor: Patrick J. McDonald

Area – Mathematics, Engineering, Physical Sciences, and Biological and Life Sciences

Stephanie_Spielman_85x85Stephanie Jill Spielman
Investigating the behaviors and limitations of phylogenetic models of protein-coding sequence evolution”
Department of Ecology, Evolution and Behavior, College of Natural Sciences
Supervisor: Claus O. Wilke

Outstanding Master’s Thesis/Report
Area – Humanities and Fine Arts

Megan_Nevels_85x85Megan Nevels
“OUR Stories of L.A.: Youth Constructing Counter-Narratives through Devised Performance”
Department of Theatre and Dance, College of Fine Arts
Supervisor: Megan Alrutz

Area – Mathematics, Engineering, Physical Sciences, and Biological and Life Sciences

Yao_Lun_Yang_85x85Yao-Lun Yang
“The Class 0 Prostar BHR71: Herschel Observations and Dust Continuum Models”
Department of Astronomy, College of Natural Sciences
Supervisor: Neal Evans

William S. Livingston Outstanding Graduate Student Academic Employee

Tee_Tyler_85x85

Assistant Instructor
Tee Tyler
School of Social Work

 

Nkemakonam_Egboga_85x85Teaching Assistant
Nkemakonam Egboga
Cockrell School of Engineering

 

Rayna_Harris_85x85

Graduate Research Assistant
Rayna Harris
College of Natural Sciences

 

 

Professional Awards
Outstanding Alumnus

Joseph_Oneill_85x85Joseph O’Neill
Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs

 

Outstanding Graduate Teaching

tasha_beretvas_85x85S. Natasha Beretvas
Department of Educational Psychology
College of Education

 

Outstanding Graduate Adviser

charles_holahan_85x85Charles J. Holahan
Department of Psychology
College of Liberal Arts

 

Outstanding Graduate Coordinator

Philip_Guerrero_85x85Philip Guerrero
Department of Geological Sciences
Jackson School of Geosciences

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Spring 2016 Career Programming


The Graduate School has partnered with Liberal Arts Career Services to provide career-related services and resources to current UT graduate students of all disciplines pursuing careers outside of academia. We invite you to participate in our services and programming below!

Alt-Ac Career Coaching

Currently enrolled UT Austin graduate students, regardless of discipline, are eligible for individual career coaching appointments through Liberal Arts Career Services. If you are finishing your graduate degree in May and plan to pursue a non-academic career, consider scheduling an appointment sooner rather than later. 

Liberal Arts students – create a BTT Gateway account and call 512-471-7900 to schedule your appointment.

Non-Liberal Arts studentsregister with us to get started.

Alt-Ac Careers List

Interested in receiving email announcements on career resources and upcoming programs specifically designed for graduate students? Join our mailing list for graduate students interested in alt-ac careers by subscribing here.

Grad Student Career Transitions Group

This workshop series is designed to give you the knowledge, skills and information you need to move forward with your non-academic career plans. Join us for one or all four of these workshops offered once a month in the Glickman Conference Center (CLA 1.302E). The series is open to all disciplines and breakfast is provided.

Identifying Your Transferable Skills | Wed, Mar 9 | 10:00-11:00 a.m. | CLA 1.302E | RSVP Here

Hone in on the most marketable skills you’ve acquired while earning your graduate degree. Learn how to promote your research, teaching and critical thinking skills outside of academia.

Preparing for Non-faculty Job Interviews | Wed, Apr 13 | 10:00-11:00 a.m. | CLA 1.302E | RSVP Here

Get tips for answering the most common interview questions. Prepare responses for “Give me an example of a time you…” questions.

 

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GSA Graduate Professional Development Week

RSVP required for dinner, requested for all other events.

MONDAY, OCTOBER 26
Resilience Dinner
6:00-8:00 pm, Texas Union Quadrangle Room (3.304)

Join us for an evening with keynote speaker, Courtney Clark, and a host of professors, business and non-profit leaders from the Austin community to learn how to respond with resilience to the setbacks that are inherent to life in graduate school and beyond.

Table Hosts:
Prof. Joseph Straubhaar, Dr. Mary Steinhardt, Dr. Julie Zuniga

RSVP required (Look for confirmation email) – Limited space available

TUESDAY, OCTOBER 27
Teaching Statement Workshop: Join Dr. Molly Hatcher to talk about what makes a great teaching statement.
12:00-1:30 pm, SAC 2.120 (pizza provided)

Alt-Ac Career PanelFour panelists will share their experiences transitioning from graduate school into alt-ac careers.
5:00-6:30 pm, Burdine 112 (light refreshments provided)
Panelists:
Dr. Heather Becker – Research scientist (with faculty rank), The University of Texas at Austin School of Nursing
Dr. Mason Gemar – Research Associate at Center for Transportation Research with the Network Modeling Center (NMC)
Liz Keneski, M.A. – PhD Candidate in HDFS, Facebook Intern
Dr. Ece Turnator – Digital Humanities Coordinator at UT libraries

WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 28
Graduate Student Professional Development Focus Group: Help the GSA better understand graduate student needs surrounding professional development at our focus group. What sorts of training and support would you like to prepare you for life after graduate school?
12:00-1:30 pm, SAC 2.120 (pizza provided)

Working for & with Non-profits PanelFour panelists will share their experiences working with non-profit organizations.
 5:00-6:30 pm, Welch 2.308
Panelists:
Dr. Alison Bentley Success by 6 Program Coordinator, United Way of Austin
Taylor Cook, M.A., M.P.A. – Executive Director of Farmshare Austin
Andy Miller, MHSE – Andy is the President and Chief Executive Officer for Any Baby Can of Austin, Inc.
Dr. Megan Olshavsky – Coordinator, Research & Evaluation, Round Rock ISD

THURSDAY, OCTOBER 29
Academic Support Panel:  Join our panel for lunch to learn about non-professorial career in an academic setting.
12:00-1:30 pm, Texas Union 2.102 (pizza provided)
Panelists:
Dr. Jennifer Lyon – Director of Strategic Research Initiatives, Office of the Dean
Dr. Dan Robinson Director of Research, Evaluation, and Learning Analytics, The University of Texas at Austin Learning Sciences

Entrepreneurship PanelFour panelists will share their experiences as or working with entrepreneurs.
5:00-6:30 pm, NOA 1.124
Panelists:
Dan Driscoll – reQwip.com
Mark Hand – UnLtd USA
Michael Torres – Greenworld Restoration
Rachel Truair – PetRelocation

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 30
Non-R1 Academic Careers PanelJoin our panel for lunch to learn about their teaching and research careers at universities in the Austin Area.
12:00-1:30 pm, Texas Union 4.224
Panelists:
Dr. Kristy Ballard – Professor of Kinesiology, St. Edward’s University
Dr. Emily Northrop – Professor of Economics, Southwestern University
Dr. Alan Swinkels – Professor of Psychology, St. Edward’s University
Dr. Tom Yufik  Professor of Psychology, St. Edward’s University

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Career Planning with Dr. Mrim Boutla – November 17, 2015

 

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When: November 17, 2015 at 7:15 p.m.
Where: UTC 4.104

Eventbrite - Careers Outside Academia with Dr. Mrim Boutla

**Special Note**
Dr. Boutla asks that you register and complete the MTMCareers career assessments in advance of the workshop to maximize your experience and bring your laptop to the session.

Event Details Join Dr. Mrim Boutla for a workshop designed to help Ph.D. students and postdocs get clear, get connected, and get hired for career opportunities beyond academia. This session, titled Off-Track: Charting your Post-Ph.D. Career Path Beyond Academia, will focus on strategies you can use to get clear about your goals and transferable skills, get connected with like-minded professionals and get hired for the types of opportunities that best fit you. This workshop will include examples from Dr. Mrim Boutla’s own transition from cognitive neuroscience to career coaching to social entrepreneurship, as well as case studies from other PhDs who have leveraged their transferable skills to build intellectually and financially rewarding careers across sectors. Whether you want to compete for tenure-track jobs or explore nonacademic paths, attending this workshop will help you learn more about the many options you have to put your Ph.D. skills to work.

Topics Include:

• Translating skills from one sector the another
• Current employment trends
• Identifying employers in one’s impact area
• Leveraging social networks to identify employers 
• Tailoring resumes and cover letters

About Dr. Boutla  Dr. Mrim Boutla is a cognitive neuroscientist turned career coach and social entrepreneur. Her Ph.D. and postdoctoral research in brain plasticity have been published in peer-reviewed journals including Nature Neuroscience, Cognition, and Cerebral Cortex. Over the past decade, Dr. Boutla has used her cognitive neuroscience background to help students and professionals secure jobs that match their skills, as well as their life and career priorities. She started out as a career coach for PhDs and liberal arts graduates at Brown University. She then served as the career coach for international students and entrepreneurial management MBA students at the Kelley School of Business (Indiana University). In 2010, Dr. Boutla co-founded MTMCareers with Dr. Mark Albion (Faculty Founder of Net Impact). The MTMCareers e-learning platform combines coaching and resources to help impact leaders get clear, get connected, and get hired faster for jobs that maximize meaning and money. MTMCareers has deployed their e-learning platform across over 30 campuses in the U.S., and has received the 2013 AshokaU/Cordes Award for Social Innovation. Dr. Boutla earned her BSC in Psychology from the Université Catholique de Louvain, and her MA and Ph.D. in Brain and Cognitive Sciences from the University of Rochester.

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PhD: The Movie

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Join us at the screening of Ph.D.: The Movie 1 & 2.

November 4, 2015: Ph.D.: The Movie
November 5, 2015: Ph.D.: The Movie 2
7:00 p.m. at Hogg Auditorium

Eventbrite - PhD: The Movie 1 & 2

The first film introduces audiences to the unique and funny culture of Academia and follows four graduate students as they struggle to find a balance between research, teaching and their personal lives with humor and heart.

The Ph.D. Movie 2 looks at themes of competition in research, writer’s block, and finding your voice. The Nameless Grad Student is now an integral part of Prof. Smith’s Lab. However, the lab is in peril as research funding levels are at an all-time low. The group must travel to an important academic conference and square off against a rival group as they compete for results and grant money. Meanwhile, Cecilia’s advisor is going on sabbatical, which means she has to finish writing her thesis or be stuck in grad school another year.

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Save The Date: Graduate School Fair 10.6.15

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The Graduate Coordinator Network at The University of Texas at Austin announces its Fall 2015 Graduate School Fair.  The fair will be held on October 6, 2015, 10:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m. in the Texas Union Ballroom.

The University of Texas is host to over 50,000 students, over 35,000 of whom are undergraduates and approximately 5500 master’s students.  Students are enrolled in 14 colleges and schools across campus from Business to Engineering, Architecture to Natural Sciences.

The registration fee will be $150.  The fee includes one 6′ table and 2 chairs as well as lunch.  Tables will not be skirted, so your table banners are encouraged. Wi-fi and electricity will be available if requested.

Click here for registration information. 

If you have any questions you can contact Philip Guerrero.

Please mail the registration fee to:
The University of Texas at Austin
c/o Philip Guerrero
1 University Station C1100
Austin, TX  78712

We look forward to seeing you in Austin!

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Career Planning with Dr. Mrim Boutla

Mrim Boutla Workshop

When: February 3, 2015
Where: Avaya Auditorium
RSVP online »

Special Note: Dr. Boutla asks that you both a.) register and complete the MTMCareers career assessments in advance of the workshop to maximize your experience and b.) bring your laptop to the session.

Event Details Join Dr. Mrim Boutla for a workshop designed to help Ph.D. students and postdocs get clear, get connected, and get hired for career opportunities beyond academia. This session, titled Off-Track: Charting your Post-Ph.D. Career Path Beyond Academia, will focus on strategies you can use to get clear about your goals and transferable skills, get connected with like minded professionals and get hired for the types of opportunities that best fit you. This workshop will include examples from Dr. Mrim Boutla’s own transition from cognitive neuroscience to career coaching to social entrepreneurship, as well as case studies from other PhDs who have leveraged their transferable skills to build intellectually and financially rewarding careers across sectors. Whether you want to compete for tenure-track jobs or explore nonacademic paths, attending this workshop will help you learn more about the many options you have to put your Ph.D. skills to work.

Topics Include:

• Translating skills from one sector the another
• Current employment trends
• Identifying employers in one’s impact area
• Leveraging social networks to identify employers 
• Tailoring resumes and cover letters

About Dr. Boutla  Dr. Mrim Boutla is a cognitive neuroscientist turned career coach and social entrepreneur. Her PhD and postdoctoral research in brain plasticity have been published in peer-reviewed journals including Nature Neuroscience, Cognition, and Cerebral Cortex. Over the past decade, Dr. Boutla has used her cognitive neuroscience background to help students and professionals secure jobs that match their skills, as well as their life and career priorities. She started out as a career coach for PhDs and liberal arts graduates at Brown University. She then served as the career coach for international students and entrepreneurial management MBA students at the Kelley School of Business (Indiana University). In 2010 Dr. Boutla co-founded MTMCareers with Dr. Mark Albion (Faculty Founder of Net Impact). The MTMCareers elearning platform combines coaching and resources to help impact leaders get clear, get connected, and get hired faster for jobs that maximize meaning and money. MTMCareers has deployed their elearning platform across over 30 campuses in the US, and has received the 2013 AshokaU/Cordes Award for Social Innovation. Dr. Boutla earned her Bsc in Psychology from the Université Catholique de Louvain, and her MA and PhD in Brain and Cognitive Sciences from the University of Rochester.

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Fall ’14 Graduate Coordinator Spotlight: Kimberly Terry

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Kimberly Terry was recently recognized by the Graduate Coordinator Network as their Graduate Coordinator for Fall ’14.  GCN Historian Jennifer Tipton sat down with Kimberly to find more about her life and career.

How long have you been a Graduate Coordinator?
I’ve been a GC for almost 9 years. I have worked in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, the Teresa Lozano Long Institute for Latin American Studies, and I am currently with the Department of Psychology. [web]

What motivated you to become a Graduate Coordinator?
I love working with students. One of the great things about this job is that you can have a direct and meaningful impact on a student’s life.

Tell us what you find most rewarding about being a Graduate Coordinator.
This job is never boring! Working as closely as we do with faculty and students, you get a chance every day to help someone with something! Watching my students walk across the stage at graduation and knowing that I helped in that journey is the best feeling. I love having a job that allows me to make a difference in student’s lives!

Describe your most memorable event or experience in your career as a GC.
The most memorable event has to be working on the Liberal Arts Dissertation Boot Camp. After attending a presentation on dissertation boot camps at a NAGAP conference in Austin, several grad coordinators thought this would be a great service for the College of Liberal Arts to provide for our students. We worked on a proposal and submitted it to Dean Raizen. It was accepted and the Dissertation Boot Camp became a reality. We’ve had two years of the bootcamp and it’s really been a success for our students.

I can’t emphasize enough the importance of professional development. Not only were we able to create something beneficial for our students, but we were able to create a good working relationship with our Dean and College staff. Those relationships have proven to be invaluable. Take advantage of professional development opportunities. You never know where they will lead.

Tell us about your experience serving on the GCN Executive Committee.
This is a hard one. There were really so many great experiences. I think my favorite part was serving as Chair of the GCN. You really get to work closely with so many great coordinators and staff from around the University, in a way you wouldn’t normally have access to. I loved having a vision for our organization and working to move us closer to that goal. Plus the EC is always such an amazing group. I was constantly impressed with their ideas and drive. That goes for the whole GCN. We really are a talented group!

What is your favorite thing to do outside of work?
I love to read; mysteries are my favorite! I’m kind of a professional couch potato, so to counter-act that I like to do a few 5K’s a year. My next one is the Trail of Lights 5K in December.

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