2020 Graduate and Professional Student Orientation

University-wide Graduate and Professional Student Orientation

August 17, 2020
3-5 p.m. EDT
Virtual Event

Access video and slides from the event below.

Visit Graduate & Professional Student Orientation Activities for more orientation information and resources.


Program Schedule*

University-Wide Orientation Welcome Slides (PDF)

3–4 p.m.
Welcome & Overview

  • Amanda Godley, Vice Provost for Graduate Studies
  • Kenyon Bonner, Vice Provost and Dean of Students
  • Malena Hirsch, President, Graduate & Professional Student Government (GPSG)
  • Jay Darr, Director, University Counseling Center
  • John Williams, Henry L. Hillman Endowed Chair in Pediatric Immunology; Director of the COVID-19 Medical Response Office
  • Clyde Wilson Pickett, Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion

Watch the recording:

Or download the slides as PDFs:


4:15–4:35 p.m. — Interactive Breakout Session 1

  • Get to Know GPSG: Graduate and Professional Student Government
    Presenters:
    • Malena Hirsch, President, GPSG
    • Morgan Pierce, Vice President of Committees, GPSG
    • Amanda Leifson, Executive Administrator, GPSG (Session 1)
    • Deanna Mudry, Vice President of Communications, GPSG (Session 2)

The Graduate and Professional Student Government (GPSG) is the student government for all graduate and professional students at Pitt. We work to ensure that your needs and concerns are represented to University administration and to city and state governments. We are committed to serving students through the unique challenges this year will bring, focusing on the dynamic needs of our student body, promoting general welfare during COVID-19, providing valuable experiences and opportunities in a virtual setting, and advocating for diversity, inclusion, and equity among our university and community.

Note: no additional slides were used in this session.
 

  • An Introduction to School Ombudsperson, Graduate Policies, and Points of Contact
    Presenters:
    • Philippa Carter, Director of Diversity Initiatives and Academic Affairs
    • Cheryl Paul, Director of Engineering Student Services
    • Jennifer Walker, Academic Affairs Manager, Office of the Provost

Entering graduate school can be both thrilling and over-whelming! Understanding resources & policies is typically not the first order of business; yet, they can be infinitely helpful during stressful times. In this discussion we will orient participants to the role of the School Ombudsperson, as well as provide a road map of sorts to Graduate School policies. Our goal is to take the guesswork out of identifying support and resources.

Download the ombuds session slides as a PDF »
 

  • An Overview of Anti-Racism
    Presenter:
    • Cheryl Ruffin, Institutional Equity Manager

The Office of Diversity and Inclusion will provide an overview of what it means to be Anti-Racist and how we can foster an anti-racist environment.

Download the Developing Diversity Consciousness to Foster Antiracist Practices, Cultures, and Communities workbook PDF »
 

  • Graduate Student Health Insurance
    Presenters:
    • Brittany Turley-Frund, Benefits Analyst, Health & Welfare
    • Martin Spangenberg, Strategic Account Representative, UPMC Health Plan

This session will provide a general overview of what medical, dental and vision plans are available to the Pitt student population. The presentation will go over plan designs and highlights of the cost. We will also cover the enrollment process and how to reach out for assistance. 



Download the health insurance session slides as a PDF »


4:40–5:00 p.m. — Interactive Breakout Session 2 
See presenters and abstracts in Session 1 above.

  • Get to Know GPSG: Graduate and Professional Student Government
  • An Introduction to School Ombudsperson, Graduate Policies, and Points of Contact
  • An Overview of Anti-Racism
  • Graduate Student Health Insurance
     

Visit Graduate & Professional Student Orientation Activities for more orientation information and resources.