Serving on the council is an opportunity to share experiences, identify and suggest solutions to challenges unique to graduate students, and to make recommendations to build a welcoming and inclusive graduate community. (File photo pre-COVID)

Students Sought for UCF’s First Graduate Student Advisory Council

By: Zenaida Gonzalez Kotala on

UCF is looking for students to serve on its new Graduate Student Advisory Council launching this fall.

Serving on the council is an opportunity to share experiences, identify and suggest solutions to challenges unique to graduate students, and make recommendations to the College of Graduate Studies to build a welcoming and inclusive graduate community.

Students on the council will have direct access to the dean of the college and will be featured on the council’s website. It is also a good opportunity for graduate fellows to contribute to their community.

“During the pandemic, we hosted several virtual town halls that were quite popular with our students,” says Elizabeth Klonoff, dean of the College of Graduate Studies and vice president for Research. “Our students helped us anticipate challenges, identify and solve problems, and often inspired new ideas. They are our No. 1 priority, which is why I wanted to establish an ongoing advisory council.”

The college will continue to host town hall meetings open to all graduate students during the semester. The advisory council provides students an additional voice.

Discussion topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Creating a more inclusive and welcoming graduate community
  • Improving graduate student wellness
  • Expanding research and scholarship opportunities
  • Enhancing graduate student culture on campus
  • Improving graduate student/faculty relationships
  • Creating competitive stipends/pay for GTA and GRA

Candidates from all disciplines are encouraged to apply online by Sept. 15. Students may be full-time, part-time, online, in-person, and may be master, doctoral or certificate-seeking. Candidates must have a minimum GPA of 3.0. Those interested should not have any violations of UCF’s Golden Rule and should have at least two hours available each month to prepare and meet with the dean of the college.

Students will be selected from the pool of applicants and will serve an entire academic year. Those invited to join the council are expected to actively engage, attend meetings regularly and provide thoughtful comments and recommendations in a respectful manner.

For more information visit the council website or email Zenaida Gonzalez Kotala at zenaida.kotala@ucf.edu.

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