Graduate Studies

Student Success Series

The Student Success Series takes place in the fall and spring semesters. This series of workshops is designed to support current graduate students in building skills to succeed in their graduate programs and provides other professional development opportunities.

Please click on the tab below to view our current workshops. Upcoming workshops for the following year will be posted before the semester begins.

Please read before you register

  • Students must use their CSUN email to register.
  • Students will also need to complete a Zoom Registration Form; our office will send the link to access the form before the scheduled workshop.
  • Once the Zoom Registration form is complete, students will receive a confirmation email with the meeting instructions.

Special Note: These workshops might be recorded so it can be shared with other students.

Fall Workshop Presentations

PowerPoint slides will be available after the workshop has taken place. Please select the links (once they are available) below to access the slides from the Fall workshop series. To view a list of upcoming workshops scheduled in October and November, please click on the tabs in the accordion.

OCTOBER WORKSHOPS: Workshop Details and Descriptions

  • Requesting Letters of Recommendation and Building Relationship with Faculty
    Speaker: Dr. Allen Lipscomb
    Date: Tuesday, October 3rd
    Time: 5:00 pm -6:00 pm
    Location: Via Zoom
    Workshop Description: The purpose of this workshop is to provide students with guidance on developing student-faculty mentoring relationship, as well as assisting students with the process of requesting faculty letters of recommendation.

  • Women in Academia
    Panel of Speakers: Dr. Yarma Velazquez Vargas, Chicana/o Studies Department, Dr. Carmen Saunders-Russell, Health Science Department and Dr. Maryam Tabibzadeh, Department of Manufacturing Systems Engineering & Management
    Moderator: Dr. Amy Levin and Wendy Brown-Danks
    Date: Monday, October 16th
    Time: 1:30pm-2:30pm
    Location: Via Zoom
    Workshop Description: This panel of three CSUN faculty will share their experiences navigating graduate school and life as a female faculty member. They will answer questions you have about work/life balance, being a woman in graduate school, and intersectional gender issues one faces as a professor.


NOVEMBER WORKSHOPS: Workshop Details and Descriptions

  • Statement of Purpose and Diversity/Personal Statement
    Speaker: Dr. Nayan G. Ramirez
    Date: Thursday, November 2nd
    Time: 2:00 pm-3:00 pm
    Location: Via Zoom
    Workshop Description: The Statement of Purpose (SOP, sometimes called Personal Statement, Objectives Statement, or some other similar title) is generally the most important component of your application, and the Personal/Diversity Statement (or some similar title) complements that document to reflect on how your lived experience has contributed to the goals outlined in your SOP. In this workshop, we will explore how this document outlines what you intend to focus on in a graduate program, how all of your academic and work experiences thus far have built towards this moment, and how your intended school is the ideal place to pursue your graduate education. We’ve created three groups for this workshop based on similarity in expectations for the document, so you’ll receive targeted information to your general field. We will discuss strategies for standing out from the crowd while also adhering to the structure and content schools expect in the document. You will leave this workshop with an understanding of content and approach so you can get started with a draft.

  • Financing Your Graduate Education: The Higher Education Hustle
    Speaker: Pauline Serrano
    Date: Friday, November 3rd
    Time: 2:00 pm
    Location: Via Zoom
    Workshop Description: In this workshop, former CSUN alumni and current professor will discuss the process behind obtaining the necessary funds to support yourself as you navigate higher education. Topics include how to start writing, how to seek mentorship, and how to ask for letters of recommendation.

  • Overview of the Graduate Application Process
    Speaker: Professor Heidi Schumacher
    Date: Thursday, November 16th
    Time: 3:00pm-4:00pm
    Location: Via Zoom
    Workshop Description: In this workshop, we'll offer an overview of applying to graduate school. We'll discuss the components of graduate applications, the timeline for applying, how to select schools to apply to, and where to look for information about those schools.