Academics, Research, & Careers

The ARC committee spearheads initiatives and events aimed at improving professional and academic life at MIT. The committee includes a number of project chairs, each of whom work with the committee chairs to organize a particular event or initiative, as well as a large number of volunteers. In addition to carrying out these projects, ARC is also responsible for pursuing academic and career-related advocacy issues for the GSC. In 2005, ARC was awarded the William L. Stewart Jr. Award for contributions to extracurricular activities and events during the preceding year.

A listing of ARC’s current projects and advocacy items are listed below, but we are always interested in exploring new ideas and advocating for an improved academic and professional experience for all graduate students. If you would like to find out more, please feel free to contact the ARC committee chair at gsc-arc[at]mit[dot]edu or attend the next committee meeting. Additionally, ARC has a number of open positions available. Meeting minutes are archived below.


 

Daniel Day  & Beipeng Mu

2013-2014 ARC Co-Chairs


Open positions

Gain valuable leadership experience by being a coordinator for one the following projects on ARC! Being a coordinator will also prepare you to run for more senior positions in the GSC. Most of these positions have well-defined tasks that will not require a large time commitment. To apply, please contact gsc-arc [at] mit [dot] edu with a short paragraph explaining why you are interested in the position.

1. Event Coordinator

Background: ARC hosts monthly talks as well as infrequent larger events (such as student night). For these events to be successful, good event coordinators are essential.

Job description: The coordinator owns his events. He is responsible for both planning(set up goals, pick date and time) and executing events (e.g. invite speakers, publicize events, maintaining registration etc). Typical time commitment is about 20 hr/event.

Useful skills: None required—we have extensive experience and will navigate you through the process, though you are welcome to try out new ideas. Just be passionate and motivated!

2. Advising Initiative Associate

Background: Based on results from a recent survey, ARC is working with MIT’s departments to enhance the research advising experience for grad students. This includes presenting the survey results to the departments, offering recommendations to faculty committees and departmental student boards, and discussing potential improvement measures specific for each department.

Job description: You will be working with three to four other associates on the advising initiative. You will first shadow an experienced member and learn how to present the results and interact with departments. You will also have a chance to meet and discuss advising issues with departmental student boards. In the next year, the advising team will also implement methods of measuring progress/success in the different departments.

Useful skills: None required. Prior experience in advocacy is useful, though most new members do not have this experience and develop the skills on the job—with practice, you will become an effective advocate.


ARC Programs and Subcommittees

Programs

  • Advising Initiative: Based on results from a recent survey, ARC is working with MIT’s departments to enhance the research advising experience for grad students. This includes presenting the survey results to the departments, offering recommendations to faculty committees and departmental student boards, and discussing potential improvement measures specific for each department.
  • Academic Career Series (coordinator – Helen Xie) This series seeks to inform graduate students about career choice related to academia. It includes there events during the summer: “Academia, Industry, or Both”, “Nuts and Bolts of an Academic Job Search” and “Finding a Good Postdoc”.
  • Professional Development Speaker Series (coordinators- Chris Aakre, Yichen Du):  This series seeks to inform graduate students about different career sectors and their trends by inviting MIT alums working in diverse fields to talk about their career, as well as how their MIT education helped them make their career decisions.
  • Professional Development Skills Workshop (coordinator – Laura Lewis): The workshop series aims to inform graduate students of skills that are important to them regardless of which career path they choose to pursue after MIT. Examples include communication, networking, giving an “elevator pitch” about your research, and leading a UROP.
  • Travel Grants (coordinator – Monika Avello): It is designed to support the conference-related travel expenses of MIT graduate students in all Schools throughout the Institute. Specifically, this fund is allocated to conference travel expenses that are not currently funded by the student’s advisor or other MIT-related funding. The fund provides grant money for most conference-related expenses including lodging.
  • GSC Outreach Grants (coordinator – Monika Avello): This program awards grants to students to enable them to develop their own event on academic and professional skills.
  • Dissertation Boot Camp (coordinator – Lindsay O’Brien): Three times a year, ARC holds the Dissertation Boot Camp (DBC). This is a 10-day-long program intended for quiet time of thesis-writing, accompanied by coffee and breakfast, and punctuated by talks on wellness, writing, etc.
  • MIT Career Fair
  • Institute Awards

Subcommittees

Meeting Minutes

Past Projects