A Fresh Start
Welcome to a new semester of your graduate education!
The pinecone was dropped in downtown Flag, marking the beginning of a new year; a blank page is ready for us to fill up with plans, hopes, and expectations. The crisp winter air is full of excitement, plans, and energy, and as the days pass and the seasons change there will be commencement and job interviews, field seasons or lab work—new beginnings for all.
We at GSO are very excited about this new semester as we strive to reach the goals that we set for our organization at the beginning of the academic year.
First, be aware that at our next GSO meeting, NAU President John Haeger will join us for a Q&A session. That's February 17 at 5:15, location to be determined. Watch your e-mail for more details — interested graduate students are invited to attend or participate via the meet-me-line.
Next, thanks to your support we have increased department representation and attendance to our monthly meetings, and we undertook a strategic planning exercise in November that allowed us to set short-, mid-, and long- term goals. We want to improve graduate education with increased research opportunities, travel awards, assistantships, and greater participation in campus activities.
During this planning session, we decided to become an independent student organization at NAU, to allow us more flexibility to work toward our long-range goals. We plan to build a budget and create more structured positions for graduate students to administer our needs as an organization.
We are aware that this will be a challenging endeavor, but we are willing to invest time and energy to achieve it. And we will need your help and support. Please become involved through your department representative, attend our monthly meetings, and read our announcements sent through the graduate student listserv or posted on our GSO website.
Have a fantastic 2010; we wish you the best of luck with your academic and life pursuits.
—Citlali Cortés-Montaño, GSO President and PhD student, Forestry