- Expanding Graduate Opportunities
Speaking of the research enterprise, how does the university continue to expand it while developing the leaders individual disciplines need and that UGA wants to be known for? By increasing graduate enrollment:
The University of Georgia is rolling out an initiative to increase the enrollment of graduate students by offering new funding opportunities, innovative interdisciplinary programs and a wider array of professional development opportunities.
To help increase the number of graduate students on campus, the university recently expanded its Voluntary Incentive Program, which returns 1.555 times the cost of the university's full-time, in-state tuition to the department of a faculty member who funds graduate students through their research or training grants. The funds from the program, formally known as the Research Incentive Assistantships Voluntary Incentive Program, cover the cost of an additional "VIP" doctoral assistantship to effectively double the number of graduate students that faculty can fund through their grants.
In addition to expanding the Voluntary Incentive Program, UGA's Graduate School has hired a full-time grants coordinator to help faculty successfully compete for training grants that support graduate students in areas that align with their areas of expertise. UGA faculty members received more than $4 million in training grants from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health in the last fiscal year alone, and the new grants coordinator will help increase that figure by assisting faculty members in identifying funding opportunities and preparing grant submissions.
This important step acknowledges some fundamental realties in a creative way designed for micro and macro benefits - to students, to faculty, to the institution, to research broadly construed. Training, visionary programs and professional development bring the university's mission to full force in service of the state, society and citizens. All the while, enticing students into the rigors of demanding scholarship moves people power - our greatest resource - in the direction of complex challenges.
Image: UGA Graduate School.