MCS GSAC Meeting Minutes
February 23, 2006

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February 23, 2006

GSAC Meeting
Thursday, February 26, 2006

In attendance:

Jessica Cooper (CMY)
Anya Zatsman (CMY) Zeb Krahn (PHY)

Gregg Franklin
Rea Freeland
Katya Malkin

Renee Starek

1. Poster Session Review
Attendance was lower at this year's poster session. This may have been due to other events going on at the same time, but in general, the group agreed that this is still a good time of year to have the poster session.

Comments included:
  • We should have a policy that poster presenters have to be present to win a prize. This year two presenters were not present and were selected to win prizes.
  • We will hold next year's poster session in Mellon. Rangos is not available for that time of year and the cost of catering has increased significantly. At Mellon it's much easier and cheaper to hire an outside caterer.
  • We should buy several extra large poster boards (they come as large as 4'x8'). Some presenters showed up with posters larger than the boards we provided.


2. Jorge Cham Visit
Jorge Cham, author of PhD Comics, will be visiting CMU on April 5. He will be here for two book signings and will give a keynote address at the Graduate Student Appreciation Awards ceremony. Then, award winners and a small group of students will join him for dinner after the second book signing. Becky Bollinger from Biological Sciences has organized the event and asked if GSAC would be interested in helping with some of the logistics and whether they would support using departmental GSA funds to help with his travel expenses. This would be on the order of $165 from each department as GSA will match funding for interdepartmental events. It would be an opportunity to foster communication between the departments and should be a fun event for relatively minimal cost. However, the group was not in favor of using GSA funds to support the event.

3. Career Seminar
Renee Starek, Career Consultant for MCS, joined us to discuss plans for graduate career seminar next fall. We will hold a panel discussion with panelists who are recruiters and PhD scientists. Renee will take care of contact two recruiters and the departments will be responsible for locating PhD alumni. The focus will be on any non-academic/non-traditional career paths.

It will be held in the Peter/McKenna/Wright rooms in the UC on September 18, from 5:30 - 7:30.

Gregg will announce this at the next Department Heads' meeting so the departments can begin to look appropriate contacts.

4. Happy Hour
The next GSAC Happy Hour is scheduled for Friday, March 31, 5:00 - 8:00PM in the MI Conference Room. Gerard offered to get the beer and Anya offered to order food. The Singleton Room was not available but may be an option for a happy hour next fall. We will try to advertise more this year to get more people to attend!