Workshops for Graduate Students

Posted on Monday, February 17th, 2014 by admin under Economic Development, Events, Professional development, Research, Student success, Student support, Students. Tags: , , , , , , ,

Student Perspective post by: Matt Barrett
Matt BarrettGraduate Assistant for Communications

While I’m tempted to write another snow day blog, I’d like to take this time to switch gears and mention a few specific events that will be taking place at UNCG throughout February.  Most of you probably received the email about the upcoming Graduate School Workshops—but in case it’s been misplaced (you deleted it) or you’re unsure what to attend, I’m here to give you my thoughts.

I’m probably not the best person to listen to when it comes to these workshops.  My goal at UNCG is to become a good story-teller, not to learn the best practices of structuring a thesis.  But as I was looking through the list, I couldn’t help but think how the workshops are applicable to all of us, regardless of our discipline.  For instance, on February 19th from 2 to 4 pm, the Graduate School is holding an event called “How to Develop a Business Plan.”  And while I normally wouldn’t consider attending this type of workshop, I have developed a different perspective since enrolling at UNCG.  Last semester, I took a course called Publishing and Entrepreneurship, and the final project was to come up with an idea that would help the publishing/bookstore industry.  I had to create a business plan for my idea—and to say the least, I had a difficult time.  So if you’re starting to think, “I’d like to write a business plan but don’t know what my business would be,” you can take the idea I came up with last semester.  I now present you with a revolutionary idea that will benefit the publishing/bookstore industry:  I’ve noticed that a lot of independent bookstores have a big open space for author readings/ book signings.  So I asked myself, how could that space be best utilized to keep these stores in business?  And I realized that just a few months ago, I attended a wine and painting course, where I went to Cary with a bottle of Merlot and learned how to paint a landscape using oils and a canvas.  The class was packed and it was priced around $30 a person for a couple of hours—so I thought, why isn’t there a wine and writing class?  An independent bookstore could hire a high school English teacher or Creative Writing professor to teach a class each week, from 7 to 9 pm, where people bring their own bottle of booze and get pointers on how to write a story.  Anyway, I think this idea should be put into use, and since I’ll never do anything with it, I present this potential business to you, my faithful blog readers.  And now that you have a reason to attend the Business Plan Writing workshop, I hope to see you there.

Another date you should mark on your calendars is February 26th.  In 500 Forest, a “Communicating Beyond Your Discipline” workshop will be held from 3 to 4 pm.  How does this apply to you?  Well, since you’re currently enrolled in graduate school (and if you’re not, then that probably means you’re my parents), you are pursuing an advanced degree in a specific field.  So now that you have gathered this incredible wealth of knowledge, how are you going to discuss your studies with those who come from different backgrounds?  Perhaps this is a shameless plug, but the upcoming issue of Horizons will feature two current graduate students who have successfully communicated “beyond their discipline,” and won huge monetary awards for doing so.  For instance, the Graduate School adopted the Three Minute Thesis Competition this year (which you will learn more about in Horizons), where students have to discuss their entire two years of master’s research in three minutes.  The winner is awarded $1,000 and the main judging criteria is the ability to present your thesis in a way that everyone can understand.  So if you’re interested in competing for $1,000 next year, you might want to attend this seminar.

These are just a couple of the upcoming workshops, but the whole list can be found here:  Links for registering are also provided below.  And in case you’re wondering, the business idea I presented earlier would be called BYO-Fiction or BYO-Poetry, depending on which type of writing class is being taught.  Good luck.  Now, go get rich!

How to Develop a Business Plan Webinar/Workshop

Wednesday, February 19, 2-4pm, Joint School of Nanoscience & Nanoengineering Auditorium – 2907 E. Lee Street

Mr. Joe Erba, lecturer/professor of practice at UNCG’s Bryan School of Business & Economics, has served as a corporate entrepreneur for much of his business career, starting and leading new venture firms. He will lead an overview of coming up with an idea and how to design a business plan.

Ms. Kathy F. Elliott is the Vice President for Entrepreneurship at Greensboro Partnership, where she focuses on supporting entrepreneurs to secure mentoring and coaching as well as investment capital. She has been in the field of entrepreneurship and small business development for over 25 years and will discuss networking and connections to resources.

To register to attend either in person or online via webinar, complete the registration form.

Communicating Beyond Your Discipline

Wednesday, February 26, 3:00-4:00 pm, 500 Forest

For those who have registered for the Graduate Research & Creativity Expo. Discussion and hands-on practice in engaging audiences outside your field in understanding your work.

Register here:

Graduate Student Association Research Talk: Qualitative Research

Thursday, February 27, 4:30-5:30 pm, EUC Kirkland Room

The GSA has brought together a cross-disciplinary panel of faculty to discuss qualitative research.

Register here:

The Slippery Slope Series: Questionable Research Practices

Friday, February 28, 12 noon – 1:15 pm (light refreshments available); MHRA 2711

Dr. Kelly Wester, associate professor in Counseling and Educational Development, and Dr. Laurie Wideman, associate professor in Kinesiology, will lead the discussion. Register to attend at For more info, contact Melissa Beck at