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Graduate Students Recognized for Outreach and Service

Six UC San Diego doctoral candidates named to national Bouchet Graduate Honor Society, which supports students traditionally underrepresented in academia

Lydia Hernandez took an unconventional path to her graduate program in molecular biology. After earning her bachelor’s degree in communication, she worked as a kayak instructor for seven years. “That’s how I got interested in science,” she said. Out on the water every day, she started wondering about how tides and currents work. She learned how to navigate and read charts, and realized that she wanted to change her teaching direction from kayaking to environmental science. Hernandez went back to school, took one molecular biology class and fell in love. Read More.

Bioengineering Student Takes Top Prize
for 3-D Printed Smart
Red Blood Cell

Jahir Gutierrez was playing with voice commands in the Google Now app when he came up with his prize-winning idea for a new health data tool. The bioengineering graduate student was trying out different questions—about the weather, his location, his contacts and so on—to see how Google Now would respond. Then in the middle of a question, he sneezed. Read More.
April 2, 2015

The Spring Quarter is upon us, when thoughts turn to the end of the academic year as well as the meaningful celebration of Graduate Commencement.  It is a busy time in the Graduate Division, as students rush to complete their degree requirements and take their next steps towards their professional lives. We look forward to assisting all of our students with this pivotal transition. 

This issue of the newsletter features stories about two programs of which I am inordinately proud. First, we have selected a new cohort of Bouchet Honor Society inductees, chosen on the basis of their commitment to an inclusive graduate community and the ideals of social justice for all. 
Read More.

Semifinals: April 9

10:00 AM Chancellor's Complex 111A

1:00 PM Bear Room, PC West


Final: April 15

4:00 PM SSC Multipurpose Room

Come to see graduate students showcase their research in three minute talks. The winner receives $2,500 and will compete in the first UC wide Grad SLAM in May. Read more here.

Fellowship Workshops

April 14, 2:30-4:00 PM – Applying for Fellowships Workshop (Co-Sponsored with Center for the Humanities): PC West Green Table Room

April 29, 3:00-4:30 PM The Funding Agency’s Point of View Workshop (Co-Sponsored with Center for the Humanities): Price Center Art Space Room

Click here to view more workshops. 



Sunday, June 14

The deadline to register for commencement is Friday, June 5. Click here for more information and to register.

UC San Diego and Sloan Foundation Partner to Support Underrepresented Graduate Students

UC San Diego is one of three institutions selected by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation for a partnership to support underrepresented graduate students in STEM fields. The three-year, multi-million dollar initiative is an expansion of the Sloan Foundation’s Minority Ph.D. Program. Click here to read the full press release.


New Joint Doctoral Program in Interdisciplinary Research on Substance Use 

The JDP in Interdisciplinary Research on Substance Use has been launched by the Division of Global Public Health in the University of California, San Diego School of Medicine and San Diego State University’s School of Social Work.  Read More.

Interdisciplinary Research Award Winners

Amay Bandodkar, NanoEngineering 

"Epidermal Tatoo Sensors"

Michelle Ma, Bioengineering 

"Harnessing heart power: How much force can an individual's heart cell produce?"

Tyler Marghetis, Cognitive Science 

"Can't touch this! How humans get a grip on numbers and time"

Click here for photos and a description of the event.


Graduate Research Advocacy Day Winners 

Kara Finzel, Chemistry

"Probing protein-protein interactions in fatty acid biosynthesis for enhancing biofuel development and antibiotic design"

Nicholas Obradovich, Political Science

Nick examines the politics and political effects of a changing climate.  He researches questions like "How does unusual weather affect rural voting behaviors?"
Kara and Nick will travel to Sacramento with Dean Barrett on April 27 as part of a UC-wide contingent. Their research will be displayed at the Capitol and they will meet with legislators to share how their research impacts California. Learn more.

Dramatists Make National Splash

UC San Diego playwrights have earned top honors for 2015 in a national awards program run by the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C.The three dramatists from UC San Diego's graduate program -- Kristin Idaszak, Jeff Augustin and David Jacobi -- are among just-announced winners of the Michael Kanin Playwriting Awards. Read More

Aloha from Alumnus Matt Zimmerman

Where do you go after studying for a Ph.D. in San Diego? Hawaii of course. After earning his doctoral degree in biomedical sciences in 1999, alumnus Matt Zimmerman moved to the island of Oahu to pursue his passion for scuba diving. Now the owner and founder of Island Divers Hawaii, the largest dive shop on Oahu, Zimmerman has found that starting a business has a lot in common with pursuing a graduate degree. Read more.

Commencement and Spring Quarter

Friday, June 5:
Deadline to register for commencement, to file degree paperwork for a Spring degree and have name listed in commencement booklet. 

Friday, June 12
Final deadline for a Spring degree (name will not be listed in commencement booklet).

Deadline to submit the following is Friday, April 10:
•  Half-time Study requests
•  Leave of Absence forms
•  In Absentia petitions
•  Applications to Candidacy 
   for the Master’s degree
Click here for other Spring quarter deadlines.

Fellowship Submission

April 17, 8:00 AM Fulbright-Hays DDRA applications

July 6, noon CGS/ProQuest Distinguished Dissertation Awards

Click here for more information.

Graduate Division Staff Profiles

Zoe Ziliak Michel

Zoe Ziliak Michel, the graduate fellowship advisor in the Financial Support Unit, joined the Graduate Division in August 2011 after a year working at the Nimitz Marine Facility (part of SIO).

She has bachelor’s degrees in English literature and German from the University of Oklahoma and an MA and a PhD in linguistics from the University of Florida. 

Zoe inherited her pie-making abilities from her mother but otherwise no longer cooks like a Midwesterner, except on Thanksgiving.

She has studied German, Italian, French, Spanish, Turkish, Hungarian, and Wolof, and she has recently started teaching herself American Sign Language. 

Zoe recently bought some roller skates.
Jennifer Kim

Jennifer Kim is the PhD adviser in the Academic Affairs Unit; she joined the Graduate Division in November 2013. 

I love yoga, the outdoors, and DIY projects (even if they never come out looking like they should). I have random things lying around the house because I am sure I will make beautiful things out of them… one day! 

I enjoy being out in the desert; there’s a different kind of beauty there. I visit the high desert as often as I can and will be getting married there in September.

The love my life is my dog LEO. He is 14 years old and gets sweeter as he gets older.

If I could meet any person, living or dead, it would be fascinating to speak with “Lucy” [our earliest known human ancestor].

The talent I would most like to have is a photographic memory.

My idea of happiness is being with my friends and dogs, playing rummikub and eating Margherita pizza. It would be perfection if I could do this in a world full of only kindness and love!
For graduate admissions
and application information, please
go to Admissions, or email gradadmissions

For general information, contact the Graduate Division's main office
at 858-534-3555.

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