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Hello, world! Virtually welcoming new grad students

24 Jul 2020, 16:28 UTC
Hello, world! Virtually welcoming new grad students
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Starting a PhD, like any new job, can be daunting. New students have a lot to get used to- new schedules, new people, new environments- and the current COVID-19 situation doesn’t exactly help! For graduate students beginning their PhDs this year, an extra challenge will be integrating into the student community in their Department without any physical interaction.Many of us who are already part-way through grad school feel really disappointed for these students, who could potentially miss out on building new friendships and support networks with their peers by starting their PhDs in the middle of this pandemic. However, whilst the new students might not be able to meet everyone in the usual way- by joining student offices, tagging along to coffee breaks, or going to social events- that doesn’t mean that we can’t get to know them virtually.To this end, we’ve decided to put together a brief list of ideas to help you welcome the new graduate students in your Department this year. This is not an exhaustive list, but we hope it provides some inspiration for ways to get to know your new peers online!

Set up a buddy/ mentoring system
Having a specific person to act as ...

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