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August 31, 2020

Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior Program

EGG – EEB Grad Group

Meeting:  August 31, 2020

Attendees: Miranda Wade, Meaghan Clark, Emily Conway, Isabela Borges, Elise Zipkin, Allison Young, Acacia Ackles, Sara Hugentobler, Maggie Sawyer, Barbara Bloemers, Bruce Martin, Julie Jarvey,

  • Updates from Elise (new EEB Director)–What’s up with EEB!
    • Elise will be reaching out as graduate student feedback is needed
    • New initiatives in EEB that will impact graduate students:
      • (1) Communications strategy—
        • Website update is coming this fall
        • There will be more opportunity for publicity for student research
      • (2) DEI initiatives—
        • EEB is putting together a committee to complement work already being done at the department level
        • Funding is available, potentially for fellowships for grad students to work on DEI issues.
      • (3) Graduate student fellowships —
        • EEB fellowship funding is now 70K/year, up from 45K!
        • Full summer funding is a goal:
          • Plan is to revise existing summer support program:
            • Students would apply for 1/2, 3/4 or full summer funding, with the remainder matched from advisors.
            • The goal is to cover all EEB grad students fully
          • This revised program would potentially provide funding to fewer students, but those students would be fully funded for the summer
          • Committee to be formed in January, so grad students should think about the right way to go about this!
        • Don Hall Endowed Fund—This fund hasn’t been used in the past, there is the potential to use it for named awards for graduate students (research awards, fellowship awards)
        • Grad students should discuss what the best way to distribute summer funding is!
      • Opportunities for serving on new EEB committees––look for email later in the Fall
      • EEB swag! e.g. Stickers, glasses, mugs, mouse pads, etc.
        • Sell at cost/low cost
        • What other swag stuff would graduate students be excited to have?
      • Social events
        • How do we engage new students? Remote students?
        • Idea to start a mentorship program
          • match new students with more advanced grad student mentor
          • We could use Plant Bio program as model. Emily and Isabela can reach out to Plant Bio people involved in forming the program for more details.
        • Should we have an EEB orientation? Would be on EGG to organize if we want to do it
        • Safety @ events:
          • Need to follow East Lansing rules on # of people at gatherings
          • How many people will attend welcome back picnic?
          • Hold multiple events at multiple parks
        • Cheesy welcome video!? Maybe have social media chairs take it on?
    • Plan to meet again with Elise after townhall/end of September, possibly open to all students, not just EGG board

Finalize meeting day/time - will monthly meetings on the last Monday at 1:00 pm work?

    • Look out for whenisgood poll to establish monthly meeting time
  • Miranda needs to get info (student ID, address, etc.) from someone willing to sign on the University EGG account 
    • Make note to update EGG bank account to replace Connie’s name with Miranda’s
  • No updates from any Committees
  • Officer Photo(s)?
    • Badly photoshop all of us into one picture?
    • Send pictures to Miranda
  • Google Drive Access?
  • Revisions to EGG’s page on EEB website
    • What does EGG want from new website? Do we want a separate website, or to continue being a page on EEB website? Who would be responsible for updating? If we have changes, we should share them with Elise for the website update.
  • Update EGG events and projects doc(?)
  • EEB and the modified education experience (aka how to facilitate camaraderie in today’s world)
    • Small mentor(ish) groups? 
    • Ideas:
      • Virtual options
      • Virtual happy hour ala bio on tap featuring EEB student
      • Use breakout rooms
      • Virtual game night
      • EGG Slack––Miranda will send invite to officers to test out
    • Use first colloquium as “Welcome to EEB” event
        • Have introductions and then use breakout rooms, use colloquium introduction as ice breaker,
        • Meaghan will ask Elise to share her “intro to EEB slides” from IBIO orientation, and invite her to all colloquium (send dates)
          • Include participating departments and numbers of people
      • Meaghan will send description/zoom info to Barbara asap
  • EEB Reminders
    • Sept 19 Welcome Picnic; Patriarche Park (starts at 12:30)
    • Sign up for colloquium!