CSE graduate student boot camp and orientation

Grad boot campThe Department of Computer Science and Engineering has welcomed 89 incoming Ph.D. and masters students this fall semester. To kick off the semester, CSE had several orientation activities for the incoming students such as a formal Graduate Student Orientation and the inaugural Graduate Student Boot Camp.

The Computer Science and Engineering Graduate Student Association (CSEGSA) Mentoring Program hosted its inaugural Graduate Student Boot Camp, which was the kick-off event for the student organization. It was held Aug. 30, in the Harvey R. “Bum” Bright building. The event focused on presenting a sense of welcome and community to incoming students. During the boot camp, CSEGSA covered three main areas of information from the student perspective to make the transition to America and graduate school easier. These topics included life in Aggieland and education in America, research in graduate school and TA/Mentor training. CSEGSA also provided lunch and community building activities during the boot camp to add a bit of fun to the program. The boot camp was a huge success for its debut. If you are interested becoming a part of CSEGSA, it meets weekly on Mondays from 11 a.m. to noon in HRBB 310A.

On Sept. 1 and Sept. 3, the Department of Computer Science and Engineering held the Graduate Student Orientation, which was mandatory for all new incoming fall 2014 graduate students. On the first day each of the supervisors for the various groups in the CSE department introduce its staff and the various duties performed. Some student organizations also made short presentations. On the second day there was a student panel and faculty panel that answered questions from the students. After the panels, there was a poster presentation by various current graduate students detailing their research.

“The success of the boot camp far exceeded our expectations,” said Stephanie Valentine, Vice President of Mentoring Activities. “One of our biggest goals for the event was to build a cohort among the new students. The community of grad students in our department needs strengthening, and I think the boot camp was a huge step in the right direction. At one point, there were 70 computer scientists in a room together talking and taking selfies. It was a beautiful sight.”

CSE is excited about the Graduate Program and looks forward to another great year with new and returning students.