A monthly newsletter by the Graduate School.
Mizzou Grad & Postdoc News
October 2020

Highlights Inside This Issue...

  1. A Message from Dr. Hart
  2. Virtual gradESSENTIALS Opportunities
  3. Center for Inclusive Excellence
  4. Surveys & Data
  5. Spring 2021 Classes
  6. Office of Research
  7. Funding Opportunities
  8. Tips & Reminders
  9. MU Postdoctoral Association

Welcome to the October Issue of Mizzou Grad & Postdoc News.

We hope you took advantage of some of the great activities during Graduate Education Week and National Postdoc Appreciation Week. As with many of the sessions from these celebratory weeks, I am sharing some opportunities below that might help you as you prepare for your lives at and after Mizzou.
Did you know that MU has a one-credit Preparing Future Faculty course and a Preparing Future Professionals course? As you think about your career trajectory, these courses can be extremely valuable. The Preparing Future Faculty course is typically taken over the course of an academic year (Parts I and II—one credit each) and explores various aspects of a career in the professoriate. The Preparing Future Professionals course is offered every semester, and it is a leadership course that focuses on building competencies for a variety of careers in and out of academia. These courses are among many gradESSENTIALS programs that we provide to complement your academic experience at Mizzou.
As you are aware, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to significant change in higher education. To keep up on the national and international higher education landscape, I encourage you to get daily email newsletters from higher education media outlets. The Chronicle of Higher Education and are two of the most popular. Both include tips about career development and graduate school life on a fairly regular basis. Understanding the current state of academia is incredibly useful as you continue your degree or postdoctoral position (and if you don’t have time, you can just delete).
Thank you for all you do to contribute to our research, teaching, and engagement missions. Graduate students and postdocs are essential to the Mizzou community. You matter and are making a difference—this is a message that you may not hear often enough, but I want to reinforce it. The Graduate School and the Office of Postdoctoral Education are here to advocate for you; please do not hesitate to reach out to us so that we can best support you while at Mizzou.
All the best,

Jeni Hart, PhD
Dean of the Graduate School
Vice Provost for Graduate Studies


Fall 2020 Professional Development Offerings for Graduate Students and Postdocs

Quick Access: Grad School events calendar, gradESSENTIALS framework for professional development, programs, & resources, event registration through the Gateway
29       Mizzou Three-Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition

5         Communicating Science
6         Communicating Your Research (all disciplines)
10       Drop in with the Deans
12       Getting Started with Grant Writing
14       Saturday Morning Writing Retreat
18       Writing Recommendation Letters

According to the Native American Heritage Month website:
“One of the very proponents of an American Indian Day was Dr. Arthur C. Parker, a Seneca Indian, who was the director of the Museum of Arts and Science in Rochester, N.Y. He persuaded the Boy Scouts of America to set aside a day for the “First Americans” and for three years they adopted such a day. In 1915, the annual Congress of the American Indian Association meeting in Lawrence, Kans., formally approved a plan concerning American Indian Day. It directed its president, Rev. Sherman Coolidge, an Arapahoe, to call upon the country to observe such a day. Coolidge issued a proclamation on Sept. 28, 1915, which declared the second Saturday of each May as an American Indian Day and contained the first formal appeal for recognition of Indians as citizens. . . . In 1990 President George H. W. Bush approved a joint resolution designating November 1990 “National American Indian Heritage Month.” Similar proclamations, under variants on the name (including “Native American Heritage Month” and “National American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month”) have been issued each year since 1994.”

Please check MU’s Division of Inclusion, Diversity & Equity for more details on MU events.

Native Historian Symposium

November 11: Indigenous Resurgence is our stories as we keep, live, and breathe them now, in a good way. Join us for our virtual inaugural Native Historian Symposium “The Future of the Past: The Next Generation of Native Historians” by Missouri Humanities. Register here.
Core Concepts Series
Noon - 1 PM
  • Wednesday, Nov. 11: Ethnocentrism, Xenophobia & Racism: Lessons from Native American Resistance 
  • Monday, Nov. 16: Gender Identity Solidarity, in conjunction with Trans Empowerment and Awareness Week
Graduate students, we want to hear from you! Be on the lookout during November for the Graduate/Professional Student Experience Survey. The survey covers issues related to your academic program, advising, health and well-being, and student satisfaction. It is a great opportunity to tell us how you're doing so that we can better support you. For questions, contact Heather Hoffman at

New Graduate Certificate

If you are interested in sharing your research with the public in innovative and fun ways, the new certificate in Public Engagement (12 total hours) is for you! This new program will increase your ability to communicate your research and disciplinary area to many different audiences. Practice and application will help you develop outreach and engagement plans that will broaden your research impact. Students from all academic disciplines are welcome and encouraged to partake in this program.
Upcoming related classes for Spring 2021 are GRAD 9070: Essentials of Public Engagement (3 hours) or GRAD 9075: Integrating Research with Outreach (3 credit hours). Sign up today!

Graduate Students and Postdocs are invited to
FRST Fridays @Noon Research Development Series

Join us for the ResearchFRST Development Series “Early CAREER Awards” 12 noon, Friday, Nov. 6 via Zoom. Experts will discuss strategies and tips for submitting successful proposals to the NSF and NIH. ResearchFRST provides faculty, postdocs, and students resources, support, training, and professional development workshops to help you be more successful. Click here to register through the Research Gateway.

STEM Funding Opportunities
The Institute for Broadening Participation provides useful links and information about STEM funding opportunities to both Undergraduate and Graduate students looking for scholarships and tips to apply.
You can also watch a video tutorial on how to use their advanced search page. If you have questions, please email Liv Detrick at
STAR Grant Program
The Graduate School invites MU graduate student and postdoctoral scholar applications for the Student Teaching as Research (STAR) mini-grant program. The program is to fund research projects on teaching and learning at the university level. Applications due November 6. Click here for more information.
MU Postdoctoral Grant Program
The Office of Postdoctoral Education Research Grant Program supports MU postdoctoral scholars in developing their independent research program. The grant awards help defray costs of conducting a clearly defined research project not financially supported by other grants, faculty members, or department/division. Applications are due November 15. Click here for more information.

Scholarship for Professional Association Membership
The Graduate School is releasing a special call for applications to fund graduate student memberships to professional associations. The funds for the Scholarship for Professional Association Membership are being disbursed through our travel scholarships program, since our ability to award travel scholarships has been limited due to COVID-19 travel restrictions. This special call allows us to support graduate student engagement with professional associations by helping to reimburse the cost of student membership fees. Applicants for the Scholarship for Professional Association Membership do not need to be a presenter or participant in a conference to apply. Graduate students can apply for a scholarship to help fund one professional association membership up to $150. Applications are due December 1, 2020. Click here to apply.


The application for graduation deadline is THIS FRIDAY, October 23rd. If you plan to complete a degree or certificate, applying for graduation is the first step! You can access the application to graduate here.

Required Training and Early Registration

Early registration is approaching! Nearly half of all graduate students have a training hold on their account, preventing future term registration. If you've not yet completed the COVID-19 Safety training and Not Anymore training, please do so at your earliest convenience. The Office of the Registrar, Chancellor, and Provost are allowing a temporary grace period so that students can enroll early despite incomplete trainings, but these trainings are required and should be completed ASAP. The enrollment hold will be in place again, starting January 1, 2021. Double check the status of your training by following this link.

Applications for Mizzou 18 are opening soon!

In the spirit of service, first modeled by the University's founding families in 1839, the Mizzou Alumni Association Student Board presents the Mizzou 18 Award. This award is dedicated to honoring 18 University of Missouri graduate and professional students in the last year of their degree eligibility.

Chosen for their world-class research, collaboration with faculty and staff, and their demonstrated leadership with undergraduate students, the honorees represent a variety of majors, activities and organizations from across campus. Each recipient also chooses a faculty or staff member to be recognized for the impact they have made in the lives of MU students.

Applications open November 1 and will close at the end of November. Visit the Alumni Association’s website to learn more about the awards and past recipients!

Health Care

There are benefits liberalizations for the Aetna student health plan. They include the following:

For duration of 20/21 plan year:
  • Expanding plan eligibility to include online students
  • Paying international claims at in-network benefit levels for eligible plan medical services
  • Waiving home country exclusions for international members
Until December 31st, 2020:
  • Waiving cost-share for COVID testing and related doctor's visits, when medically necessary
  • Waiving cost-share for inpatient treatment of COVID-19
  • Waiving cost-share for in-network behavioral health telemedicine visits
  • Waiving cost-share for in-network medical telemedicine visits
  • Waiving early refill limits on 30-day prescriptions
  • Offering 90-day supply of maintenance medications
Because of the evolving nature of COVID-19 and implications for insurance coverage, please click here. This site has a "Get COVID-19 facts" link for updated information.

Grad Assistants now Eligible for Child Care Center

MU Health Care partnered with University of Missouri Adventure Club to open a licensed child care center just before the Fall semester began for children in grades K-5. Enrollment first opened to all full-time MU Health Care and School of Medicine employees and now all MU and UM System employees, including graduate assistants, are also eligible. The center is staffed and operated by Adventure Club and will remain open until the end of the school year.
The center is located at 200 N. Keene St., next to the Thompson Center’s main building, and operates Monday through Friday, 6:15 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. For more information. please consult this Child Care Center FAQ document and apply for enrollment.

You're Invited to Open Meetings about Journal Budget for FY21

Due to increasing costs, the University of Missouri Libraries must reduce collections expenditures significantly this year. They need your cooperation in identifying the resources you rely on most to inform their purchasing over the next few years to better support you. They would like to hear from you, so they are inviting all faculty and graduate students to attend the session on:
Wednesday, October 21st, 2:00 PM, on Zoom.
Additional information is on the Libraries’ Collection Development & Management web page. You can learn more about the issues and leave feedback for them.
This year's cut will include highly used journal titles across all disciplines, since they have already made substantial cuts over the preceding several years. They are reducing collection expenditures by $1.2 million, which is approximately 20% of the total collections budget. This action will likely not affect book purchasing because it is a small percentage of the collections budget. However, it can impact several databases you regularly use, including tools like ProQuest.

Did You Know…

Assistantships or Fellowships with a tuition waiver have a limit to the number of semesters eligible for the tuition waiver. Summer semesters are not included in the count. The overall limit is two degrees or eight years, whichever comes first. If you start a degree but do not finish it and start another, the semesters of tuition waiver support received while pursuing the first degree transfer to count toward the second. Note that ALL master’s work is limited to three years of eligibility. Please see the chart below to see your specific case.


Connect with us!


Graphical Abstracts Competition

MUPA conducted a Graphical Abstract Competition this year for National Postdoc Appreciation Week. Graphical abstracts capture the paper's content at a single glance, quickly allow readers to understand the take-home message, encourage browsing, and promote interdisciplinary scholarship. Congratulations to the winners!
Dr. Breanne Baker 
Tibial Bone Quality in Former Bariatric Surgery Patients with Knee Osteoarthiritis

Dr. Melanie Boeyer
The Timing and Tempo of the Skeletal Maturational Spurt is Independent of Racial or Ethnic Background
Dr. Rachel Hernandez
How do adult children experience uncertainty in communication with their parents about COVID-19?

Interested in Serving as a Board Member?

If you are interested in serving as the MU Postdoctoral Association Travel Awards Chair for the 2020- 2021 academic year, please email Kimberly Jasmer at
Have any news you’d like to share with the MU postdoc community? Recently received a grant, published a paper, or were recognized for an award? We’d love to highlight your accomplishments on our Twitter feed! Send us a message or tag @mu_mupa in your posts so we can share the news! 
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Mizzou Grad and Postdoc News' Graphic Designer is Megan O'Russa & Features Writer is Christina Mascarenas.