March 2021 Archive Edition

 Grad School Help Desk Newsletter Header

MARCH 2021

We are now in the middle of the Spring semester and the days are getting longer and warmer. Keep up the good work you are all doing in your various roles.

To keep up with updates and messages from the Graduate School, visit our Announcements page.

The Grad School Help Desk Newsletter is here to help you with dates, funding opportunities, upcoming workshops, and graduate events. Let us know if there is anything you’d like to see or anything we missed.


The Graduate School


Apr 2 University Day holiday (no classes; offices open)

Apr 21 Last day for master’s and doctoral comprehensive exam or thesis/dissertation defense if student plants to graduate Spring 2021

Apr 26 Last day for approval of thesis, dissertation, or professional paper by the Formatting Advisor


Announcement: Health Insurance Open Enrollment

Feb 15 – May 15

The enrollment period for the Affordable Care Act health insurance will open again Feb 15 to May 15. The state of Montana has a non-profit agency, the ACA Navigator, who can help any person living in Montana find affordable health insurance. This non-profit has a federal grant to provide free navigation services. Graduate students may be eligible for subsidies that may assist in paying monthly premiums. If you are curious about your health insurance options and how to combine the services of University Health Partners at MSU with insurance, feel free to contact the ACA Navigators.

GradCat 360 Highlight:

Hosted by Career, Internship & Student Employment Services

The Graduate School encourages you to explore, powered by Handshake, is MSU’s online recruiting platform for students and employers, hosted by Career, Internship & Student Employment Services.

Graduate students and alumni can search for and receive notifications about career opportunities, summer employment, research opportunities, and internships by utilizing a customizable search profile and filters. International students who with the appropriate visa can also search for OPT/CPT opportunities.

View other GradCat 360 events and resources.

MSU Virtual Spring 2021 Career Fair

March 3-4 from 10am – 2pm

Graduate students can also take advantage of to register for the upcoming MSU Virtual Spring 2021 Career Fair. Early registration is recommended, as information sessions and one-on-ones with employers can fill up. Over 80 employers are seeking interns and full-time employees.

If you have questions about or the Career Fair, Career, Internship, & Student Employment Services in the Allen Yarnell Center for Student Success can help at [email protected].

MSU 50K Venture Competition Applications

Application Due Mar 7; Event Apr 7-8

The virtual MSU $50K Venture Competition is now taking applications (due March 7)! The MSU $50K Venture Competition will be a two-day virtual competition taking place April 7-8. Winners will be announced on Friday, April 9. These events are open to the public for viewing. This competition is open to all MSU student, faculty, staff, and recent alumni.

994-Calling! Series with Dr. Selena Ahmed

Monday, Mar 8 from 4-5pm
Where: WebEx link

The Office of Research, Economic Development and Graduate Education presents the 994-Calling! Series. Speakers are asked to "tell their story," which usually includes some fun background, where they trained, how they came to MSU, and a few key highlights on their research and scholarship. The next 994-Calling will present Selena Ahmed, Associate Professor, Sustainable Food Systems. Dr. Ahmed is an ethnobotanist with research and outreach interests at the intersection of the ecological, cultural, and health aspects of food systems.

ETD Workshop

March 10 from 9am-10am
Where: WebEx

Are you writing a thesis or dissertation? Whether your are just getting started, or are in your last semester, join a discussion with the MSU Library, the Graduate School, and the Writing Center to learn about the ETD writing and submission process, and how your research is archived at the Library and other library data services. Join us on our ETD Virtual Workshop.

Intermediate R

Wednesday, Mar 10 from 3:10-5pm
Where: Online

Extend your knowledge of R with relational and logical operators, conditional statements, loops, and functions. These concepts will be first presented conceptually, with computational practice afterward. Register The Online R Workshops are co-organized by the Library, Department of Mathematical Sciences, Statistical Consulting & Research Services.

CFE Event: Social Media Visibility & Research Practice

Wednesday, Mar 10 from 1-2pm
Where: WebEx

Social media networks can extend the visibility of your research, can be used to identify interdisciplinary research partners, and can communicate your research to audiences beyond those in your field for broader impact. Blogs, podcasts, data visualization, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn are just some of the tools and networks that can be used to incorporate social media into research practice. This Social Media Visibility workshop will provide practical examples of proactive ways to communicate and share your research in social networks for increased visibility and impact.

MSU Writing Center services for Graduate Writers

Where: Online

The MSU Writing Center is here to support graduate students!

Online Writing Studios

The MSU Writing Center will again offer online writing groups for graduate students who want to learn more about writing and improve their own writing at the same time. The goal of a writing studio is to create a supportive writing community of fellow graduate students who give feedback on written work, regardless of how complete the draft is. Writing studios are collaborative, non-evaluative spaces. Studios will be facilitated by a Writing Center tutor using Microsoft Teams and will consist of an asynchronous component where group members post, read and comment on each other’s work, followed by a synchronous, one-hour video meeting.   

To sign up for a graduate writing studio, please fill out this google form:

Focus Fridays

Focus Friday is an opportunity for graduate writers to participate in an online writing community and to connect with other graduate students working on major writing projects. 

Every Friday this semester (excluding university-sanctioned holidays), check in with each other and then write between the hours of 9 am and noon. You decide how much time you will dedicate to writing and set an achievable goal for yourself. During the check-ins, you can ask the group for feedback or simply share your successes and frustrations. Join every Friday or as your schedule allows:  Follow this link to join the Focus Friday Team. Focus Fridays are open to all graduate students, all disciplines, and all stages and comfort levels with writing.


Research on COVID-19 Effects on Mental Health

Application Due: Apr 1

The Center for Mental Health Research and Recovery (CMHRR) and the Vice President for Research, Economic Development and Graduate Education (VPREDGE) request proposals for research on COVID-19 effects on mental health.  Funds will support acquisition of preliminary data or new research methods that are intended to launch subsequent extramural proposal submissions.  Research teams may apply, and cross-disciplinary proposals are encouraged. Full time faculty (tenure, tenure-track and research) at Montana State University who have earned terminal degrees are eligible to apply.

National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Humanities Initiatives

Optional draft due: Apr 8
Application due: May 20

The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) Division of Education Programs is accepting applications for the five Humanities Initiatives programs: Humanities Initiatives at Colleges and Universities, Humanities Initiatives at Hispanic-Serving Institutions, Humanities Initiatives at Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Humanities Initiatives at Tribal Colleges and Universities, and Humanities Initiatives at Community Colleges. The purpose of these programs is to strengthen the teaching and study of the humanities at institutions of higher education by developing new humanities programs, resources (including those in digital format), or courses, or by enhancing existing ones.

View the latest in NIH funding opportunities and notices.

For more funding opportunities, visit MSU’s Research Funding Opportunities or the Graduate School’s Funding & Fellowships webpage.

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