Penn State Graduate School Penn State Penn State Graduate School

Professional Development

Graduate students attending a workshopThe Office of Graduate Educational Equity Programs in concert with the Graduate School and the academic colleges sponsor professional development opportunities for underrepresented graduate students. These workshops, seminars, and conferences are intended to address issues that may not be addressed in the academic units that can serve as barriers to students’ academic success.

Topics include but are not limited to: negotiating relationships with faculty advisors and mentors who may have different sets of cultural experiences and concerns; working with graduate peers who may have had little experience with working with people from diverse backgrounds; finding one’s place in departments that have few underrepresented students validating research that may not be perceived as significantly contributing to one’s discipline.

In addition to on-campus professional development, students are strongly encouraged to take every opportunity to attend national and regional conferences in their academic fields. The exposure to professional conferences is critical in helping students identify with and become fully emerged in their academic disciplines. The Office of Graduate Educational Equity has a small fund that is used to help underrepresented students travel to professional conferences when they are presenting their research. Students should contact the office at 814-863-1663 or stop by 111-N Kern to request an application.

The Graduate School also offers a variety of workshops and seminars for all graduate students. Underrepresented students are strongly encouraged to attend these sessions as well. A complete list of events and workshops hosted by the Graduate School can be found under Current & Returning Students and on the Important Dates page.

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