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Programs We Support

The Graduate School Alumni Society (GSAS) was established in 1997 to help support graduate education at Penn State and facilitate professional interaction between Graduate School alumni and graduate students. The Alumni Society supports or sponsors the following programs:

Workshops for Career Success

These sessions, led by Penn State graduate alumni, cover topics that enhance traditional classroom instruction. Alumni draw upon their personal experiences and professional expertise to offer presentations on topics such as time management, careers in academia, career planning, and employment searches.

Graduate Exhibition

The Graduate Exhibition celebrates research in all its aspects, music and theatrical performances, visual arts, and videos. Alumni volunteer to serve as judges, offering valuable feedback to students on their presentations.

Panel Discussions and Seminars

The GSAS is exploring opportunities to sponsor professional development panel discussions and seminars with Graduate School students during the fall, spring and summer sessions, focusing on topics identified through graduate student surveys and other forms of feedback. A primary goal is to foster connections between Graduate School alumni and graduate students.

Wall of Honor Ceremony 

This special recognition ceremony honors alumni who received their doctorates from Penn State 50, 25, and 10 years ago.

GSAS Recognition Dinner

This annual spring event recognizes Graduate School alumni recipients of the GSAS Lifetime Achievement Award, GSAS Early Career Award, and GSAS Humanitarian Award, and graduate student recipients of the Penn State Alumni Association Dissertation Awards.

GSAS Lifetime Achievement Award

The GSAS Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes Graduate School alumni who have achieved exceptional success in their profession, and have demonstrated loyalty to the University and Alumni Association. 

GSAS Early Career Award

The GSAS Early Career Award recognizes Penn State alumni who have demonstrated exceptional success in their chosen field within the first ten years after obtaining their graduate degree. This can be demonstrated in a number of ways. Examples include, but are not limited to, demonstrated leadership, substantive contributions in one's field, or national/international recognition for one's contributions.

GSAS Humanitarian Award

The GSAS Humanitarian Award recognizes an alumnus/alumna holding a graduate degree from Penn State who has made a positive societal impact on the welfare of humankind beyond the responsibilities of one's profession. This includes a significant contribution benefiting one's community, state, and/or nation, or people of other nations.

GSAS Graduate Program Chair Leadership Award

Funded by the GSAS Board of Directors, this award recognizes faculty members for exemplary leadership benefiting graduate students and faculty in existing graduate degree programs at Penn State.

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