New Students

New Graduate Student Welcome 2020

Wednesday, August 26, 2020
11 am – 3:15 pm


The Graduate School invites all newly admitted graduate students to participate in the fall New Graduate Student Welcome event each year.

This year’s virtual Welcome is an opportunity to hear from the Graduate School and campus leaders, get advice from a panel of current students about grad student life, learn about the many campus and community resources available to you, and connect with other new graduate students from across campus.

2020 Welcome Sessions & Schedule

Below are session description for the fall 2020 New Graduate Student Welcome, which include a mix of synchronous and asynchronous activities.

If you need an accommodation to attend this event, please contact All accommodation requests should be made no less than two weeks before the event. We will attempt to fulfill requests made after this date, but cannot guarantee they will be met. Note that live sessions and videos will have captions available.

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11 am - Welcome Remarks

Campus leadership will welcome graduate students to the University of Wisconsin–Madison.

  • Dean of the Graduate School William J. Karpus
  • Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs John Karl Scholz
  • Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs Lori Reesor
  • Interim Deputy Vice Chancellor for Diversity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer Cheryl Gittens

Captions will be available.

11:15 am - 1 pm Resource Fair

Learn about the campus and community services that are available to help graduate students succeed at UW–Madison. Resource Fair information will be posted online, with the opportunity to connect live with representatives from campus and community organizations during this time.

1 - 2 pm - Fellows Information Session

This session is specifically designed for new graduate students who have fellowships in the 2020-2021 academic year. Information will be provided about the rights and responsibilities you have as fellows. Topics will include: your pay schedule, tuition and seg fees, health insurance eligibility, full-time study and satisfactory progress, income tax issues, concurrent appointments, and funding beyond the fellowship years, and more.

The Fellows Information Session will be live/synchronous with live captions available.

1 - 3:15 pm - Graduate Student Panels: Question & Answer Session

A panel of seasoned graduate students will answer the large and small questions you have about everything from what can make your graduate student life easier and less stressful to establishing and maintaining relationships with faculty and staff in your program.

1 – 2 pm: Master’s student panel (Live/Synchronous, live captions available)

Concurrent Panels: 
2:15 – 3:15 pm: Arts & Humanities and Social Sciences PhD student panel (Live/Synchronous, live captions available)
2:15 – 3:15 pm: Biological Sciences & Physical Sciences PhD student panel (Live/Synchronous, live captions available)

Degree Dash

Graduate Student Welcome Week

Each fall the Graduate School offers a line-up of events during the week before classes begin to welcome and help acclimate new graduate students to campus and to welcome back current graduate students.

Check out the fall 2020 lineup of events, which will be offered online.

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Monday, Aug. 24 - How to Develop a Mentor Network for Academic and Career Success

Dr. Fatimah Williams In this live webinar for graduate students, Fatimah Williams, founder and CEO of Beyond the Tenure Track will help graduate students discover how to build meaningful, robust relationships with a diverse network of mentors and how to draw on mentorship to achieve academic and career goals. Attendees will leave the workshop better able to identify potential mentors from the university and beyond, confidently build meaningful relationships with career advocates, and develop a professional presence.

Monday, Aug. 24
View the Recording: How to Develop a Mentor Network
(NetID Login Required)

Monday, Aug. 24 - Enhancing your Graduate Degree with a Certificate

What are graduate certificates, and how can they add value to your graduate degree? In this virtual session, faculty and staff representing several graduate certificate programs (and their equivalent doctoral minors) discuss the multiple benefits that these programs provide to graduate students across campus—including expanding interdisciplinary knowledge, mastering new skills, creating community and networking opportunities, and building cultural competence. Attendees will also have the opportunity to speak with each certificate representative in smaller groups.

Monday, August 24
View the Recording: Enhancing Your Graduate Degree with a Certificate
Password: aPmwxTZ6

For more information about graduate/professional certificate programs at UW–Madison, please visit the Graduate Guide.

Tuesday, Aug. 25 - Flourishing in Graduate School: How to Manage Stress and Maintain Your Mental Health

Jen MoultonWant to make graduate school a time to thrive and not just survive? This workshop will focus on promotion of psychological well-being in graduate school. Topics covered will arm graduate students with strategies to thrive through the challenges of graduate school, including managing the transition/adjustment process, coping with stress, promoting work/life balance, and establishing habits to maintain or improve mental health.

Tuesday, Aug. 25
View the Recording: Flourishing in Graduate School
(NetID Login Required)

Tuesday, Aug. 25 - Time Management for Graduate Students

Laura GrotjanIn this interactive workshop, you will learn tips and techniques for staying on track and managing your time. We’ll cover goal-setting, minimizing distractions and staying focused, and overcoming some of the most common challenges to staying on task. Participants will leave with strategies that they can apply immediately. The strategies we’ll cover are appropriate for students in any discipline.

Tuesday, Aug. 25

Thursday, Aug. 27 - Recognizing and Reducing Implicit Bias

Jenn SheridanBuilding cultural competence is critically important for graduate students and professionals across all disciplines. This interactive talk introduces graduate students to the concepts of implicit or unconscious biases and assumptions about diverse groups of people by treating the application of such biases as a habit of mind. Students will learn how to uncover their own biases, discover the underlying concepts and language used in the psychological and social psychological literature to describe such processes, and learn evidence-based strategies for reducing the application of these biases as they cultivate relationships with people from different backgrounds, experiences, and cultures.

Thursday, Aug. 27

Thursday, Aug. 27 - Cool Tools: Apps and More to Increase Productivity

Pete ValeoPrepare to maximize your time and energy this semester by taking advantage of software available to UW–Madison graduate students that can help streamline your workflow. This virtual workshop, presented by Pete Valeo from Software Training for Students (STS), will introduce you to both basic and advanced software tools, including cloud storage services, notetaking apps, mobile scanners, research tools, tasks managers, password managers, lifestyle apps, and more.

Thursday, Aug. 27
View the Recording: Cool Tools
(NetID Login Required)

Anytime - Successful Online Learning

Explore strategies to prepare to learn remotely, engage in your courses, and maximize your time. This module, from the Graduate School, is for grad students taking their first online course or those looking for some new resources on online learning.

Enroll in the Canvas course at any time: Enroll in Successful Online Learning