Graduate School News

Graduate Program Recruitment Fair July 7th

RS12835 Education Career Fair 2015 42Interested in Graduate education? Join the UAB Graduate School for the 2017 Graduate Program Recruitment Fair. You will not want to miss this.

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Meet the 2017 Say It In 6 winners

Nada AlAssiTell us your story in six words: that’s what UAB students were challenged to do for UAB Graduate School’s inaugural Say It In 6 competition. Meet the top three winners from the 2017 competition. Read more ...

Congratulations to UAB graduate students on national, school honors

uab honors week 2017Ninety-seven UAB graduate students who have received national and school level awards were recognized at the 2017 Honors Convocation ceremony March 30. Read more ...

Upcoming Events

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New Graduate Student Orientation
The Graduate School has moved!
UAB Graduate Student Handbook Available
Graduate Student Research Days 2013
Barker Award Recipients Chosen
Faculty Recognized for Mentoring Excellence
Call for Nominations: 2014 Graduate Dean’s Award for Excellence in Mentorship
CIRTL@UAB – Preparing for a Science Teaching Career
Badham Joins Professional Development Program
Writing a Grant or Presenting at a Conference this Fall?
Accelerate Your Dissertation at UAB with Free Writing Strategies Support
Graduation News
Don’t Forget These Deadlines!


New Graduate Student Orientation

BlazeWelcome to UAB! On behalf of the Graduate Student Association (GSA) and the Graduate School, you are invited to attend the New Graduate Student Orientation. Sponsored by the GSA and the Graduate School, this event has been organized especially for you on Thursday, August 29th, 2013 from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. at the Edge of Chaos on the 4th floor of Lister Hill Library. Lister Hill Library is located at 1700 University Boulevard.

The orientation will provide you with useful information to help facilitate your transition to UAB and the Birmingham community. Various UAB organizations and services, along with a number of local businesses will have representatives on site to answer your questions. This orientation is only provided once a year, so graduate students who began attending UAB during Spring and Summer of 2013 are also invited to attend. The first 100 students in attendance will receive a free GSA Swag Bag.

We would also like to encourage you to become involved with the GSA. The GSA provides services to the graduate community such as travel grants, social and service activities, and representation of graduate student issues to the UAB administration. It is a great opportunity to network with fellow graduate students. To learn more about the GSA, please visit the GSA website at

We look forward to seeing you on Thursday, August 29th, 2013 to obtain helpful information about UAB and the Birmingham community.

If you have any questions, please e-mail Sidney Williams, GSA Vice President at

Graduate Staff have moved from the Hill University Center!

Graduate School Staff

Effective July 1, the UAB Graduate School staff members who were formerly located in the Hill University Center (HUC) permanently re-located to the ground floor of the Lister Hill Library, 1700 University Blvd. The Graduate Biomedical Sciences offices and staff will remain in the Shelby Building. Regarding the move to LHL, Dean Bryan Noe said, "We are excited about having new space that is more centrally located on campus, and being on the ground floor will make student access to our offices much more convenient than was the case in the Hill Center."

The offices of Dean Noe and Associate Dean for Academic Affairs, Jeffrey A. Engler, Ph.D., are located in Lister Hill as well as staff supporting most of the Graduate School’s functions – student and academic services, communications and events, and educational services, including the Professional Development Program led by Dr. Julia S. Austin.

“We hope students will come by and check out our new offices when they are in the area,” says Engler. “We are here to make your graduate experience a success, so feel free to introduce yourself and find out more about our resources and services to support you.”

In addition to the office space, there is free open space – tables and chairs – on the ground floor adjacent to the Graduate School offices. The school is also on the same floor of Lister Hill as Financial Aid and Student Accounting, who also re-located from the HUC.

A complete listing and map of HUC relocated units is available at

UAB Graduate Student Handbook Available

As a graduate student, it is important that you are aware of the Graduate School’s policies and procedures. The Graduate Student Handbook for 2013-2014 is available at and contains important current and updated Graduate School and university policies.

In addition, your school or program may also have policies and procedures that are important to your specific area of research. Please check with your program for any additional policies that may apply to your course of study.

Graduate Student Research Days 2013

Graduate Student Research Days 2013

This past spring, 149 students participated in UAB’s 19th annual Graduate Student Research Days on February 26, 27 & 28. Of those students, 43 received awards and were recognized at the Graduate School Awards Luncheon held on Friday, March 8 in Bartow Arena’s Green & Gold Room. 52 faculty and postdoctoral fellows volunteered their time and expertise as judges for 15 sessions.

“While Research Days has historically been a forum for graduate students to present their research among their colleagues, it has also provided an opportunity for faculty and postdoctoral fellows to serve as judges,” says Dr. Kellie Carter, the event’s coordinator. “Several judges commented on the depth and breadth of the research being done by students and were quite impressed.”

For a complete list of the 2013 award recipients, visit

Graduate Student Research Days – Re-imagined

In an effort to streamline the Graduate Student Research Days (GSRD) competition, the GSRD Planning Committee has decided to redesign the event. The new re-imagined GSRD should provide an easier presentation upload as well as smoother transitions between presentations.

Look for the call for abstracts for the 2014 competition in the Spring edition of Graduate School News & Events.

Barker Award Recipients Chosen

Samuel B Barker Award The Samuel B. Barker Award for Excellence in Graduate Studies, named for UAB’s first graduate dean, Dr. Samuel Booth Barker, is the most prestigious annual award given to students from the Graduate School. Outstanding students are nominated by the graduate faculty in their respective programs and the award recipients are chosen by a committee that the Graduate School Dean convenes. Besides receiving a cash award, the recipients are honored at the University’s Honors Convocation, and their names appear on plaques inside the Graduate School offices.

The 2013 Barker Award recipients are Roberta Challener, a doctoral student in Biology, and Stephanie Cardwell, a master’s student in Criminal Justice. Both Award Recipients are currently being featured in our Student Spotlight, located on the homepage of the Graduate School’s website,

The Selection Committee was impressed with both students and believes that the awards are well deserved. For more information about the Barker Award, including a list of past recipients, visit

Faculty Recognized for Mentoring Excellence

This past Spring, 14 UAB graduate faculty members received the Graduate Dean’s Award for Excellence in Mentorship during the 6th annual awards ceremony held in the HUC Great Hall on April 16. Each recipient was nominated by a current or former mentee and received a minimum of five nomination letters. Honorees received a bound volume containing the nomination letters written on their behalf and an engraved plaque.

Recipients are from the College of Arts & Sciences, School of Engineering, School of Health Professions, Joint Health Sciences, and School of Public Health.

The 2013 Mentorship Award recipients are: Anupam Agarwal, MD (Medicine); David B. Allison, PhD (Biostatistics), Marcas M. Bamman, PhD (Cell, Developmental & Integrative Biology); Dale W. Callahan, PhD (Information Engineering Management); Karen Cropsey, PsyD (Psychiatry & Behavioral Neurobiology); Nita A. Limdi, PharmD, PhD (Neurobiology & Epidemiology); Ludwine M. Messiaen, PhD (Clinical Genetics); Andrew E. Pollard, PhD (Biomedical Engineering); Alan Randich, PhD (Psychology); Jack M. Rogers, PhD (Biomedical Engineering); Sadeep Shrestha, PhD (Epidemiology); Brian Sims, MD, PhD (Pediatrics and Cell, Developmental & Integrative Biology); Murat M. Tanik, PhD (Electrical & Computer Engineering); Robert Weech-Maldonado, PhD (Health Services Administration).

To read excerpts from nominating letters, visit the UAB Reporter at

Call for Nominations: 2014 Graduate Dean’s Award for Excellence in Mentorship

mentorshiplogoThe Graduate Dean’s Awards for Excellence in Mentorship are presented to those mentors who inspire and motivate, promote ethical and professional values, create a collaborative and constructive atmosphere for training, and serve as outstanding role models for students and fellows in the performance of their scholarly activities and service.

Full-time regular UAB graduate faculty members who have demonstrated exceptional accomplishments as mentors of graduate students and/or postdoctoral fellows, and who have not received the award within the past 10 years, are eligible for the award.

For a list of all previous recipients and a nomination form for the 2014 awards, visit the Mentorship Award website at The deadline to receive nominations is Friday, November 1, 2013.

CIRTL@UAB – Preparing for a Science Teaching Career

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As part of your professional development, it can be useful to develop skills and experiences that will prepare you for your next stage of your career.  One way to develop your ability as a future teacher is through the Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching, and Learning (CIRTL), a national consortium of 22 Research Universities from across the US. As a member of CIRTL, UAB provides courses and activities to prepare future teachers for success as STEM educators.  The other 21 CIRTL institutions also provide courses online that students may take for UAB credit.

This year 27 UAB graduate students and postdoctoral fellows were awarded CIRTL@UAB certificates to recognize their preparation for a STEM teaching career.  They served as teaching assistants in courses, developed a teaching portfolio, discussed the psychology of learning in a journal club, and other activities to prepare themselves for teaching careers in academia, industry, government, and science policy.  These activities have enhanced their preparation for the teaching aspects of their future careers.
More information is available at and www.cirtl. net.

Badham Joins Professional Development Program

Amy BadhamAmy L. Badham, of Birmingham, Alabama, has just joined the staff of the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Graduate School as a Part-Time Instructor. Ms. Badham, a UAB alum, has been an adjunct instructor for the school’s Professional Development Program for more than two years, specializing in graduate writing courses for students in the School of Public Health (SOPH). She also adjuncts for UAB’s Minority Health Resources Center.

A returned Peace Corps Volunteer to the Philippines, Ms. Badham has a Master of Public Health-International Health from UAB, where she conducted thesis research on a “Needs Assessment for Wilcox County, Alabama.” She earned a Bachelor of Science in Psychology and a minor in Sociology from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia. Prior to becoming a teacher, she worked as a surgical technician and administrative assistant at the SOPH and the Jefferson County Department of Public Health, where she was involved in outreach and communications.

Says Ms. Badham: “I have enjoyed returning to the UAB campus as an instructor and supporting SOPH students in their development as professional writers. I truly believe that UAB is preparing the next generation of leaders in this field. Writing to publish, to spark community engagement, to shape public policy, or to win funding – all of these are core professional competencies for them.”

This fall, Ms. Badham teaches the face-to-face sections of GRD 727, Writing & Reviewing Research, in the Ryals Public Health Building. For more information, contact her at

Writing a Grant or Presenting at a Conference this Fall?

Grant Writing Two Saturday workshops are offered this fall by UAB’s Professional Development Program for graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and research staff who want to upgrade their grant-writing or professional presentation skills. The workshops, which offer 1 hour of elective graduate credit, are designed to give an introduction to the latest resources and techniques in the field, says Julia S. Austin, Ph.D., director of educational services. The workshops are:

GRD 706: Grants and Fellowships 101: How to Obtain Funding. Saturday, Sept. 7, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., CH 204. This workshop provides an introduction to writing grant proposals and fellowship applications. Topics include funding sources, electronic databases, organization and format of proposals and applications, submission and review processes, use of secondary sources, and guidelines for effective proposal writing. Instructors: Julia S. Austin, Ph.D., and Jeffrey A. Engler, Ph.D. Questions? Contact Julia S. Austin at

GRD 707: Presenting Effectively: Giving Professional Presentations. Saturday, Nov. 16, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., CH 204. This workshop examines elements necessary for giving effective professional presentations. Topics include analyzing audience and purpose, assessing environment, language choices, differences between speaking and writing, nonverbal communication, characteristics of effective delivery, controlling nervousness, poster presentations, visual aids, and handling questions. Instructors: Jennifer L. Greer, Ph.D., and Kellie R. Carter, Ph.D. Questions? Contact Jennifer L. Greer at

Accelerate Your Dissertation at UAB with Free Writing Strategies Support

This fall, the UAB Graduate School will launch a new initiative, Accelerate Your Dissertation, to offer free writing workshops and dissertation support services to UAB doctoral students, according to Jennifer L. Greer, Ph.D., lead writing instructor in the school’s Professional Development Program. “UAB attracts the best and brightest students in the world, but not all of them come prepared for the challenge of a dissertation. It’s a writing marathon. We know that students who take too long to complete this part of the journey run the risk of dropping out. We want to do everything we can to prevent that.”

For several years now, the UAB Graduate School has offered a 3-hour dissertation writing course and a 1-credit hour all-day dissertation strategies workshop, which have met with steady interest, explains Julia S. Austin, Ph.D., director of educational services. “Although dissertations are different in each field, we have found common ground at UAB in helping students manage both the overall process and the actual writing project. We think even more doctoral students can benefit from our strategies and support services if we offer them in a variety of delivery formats.”

The initiative is being developed in collaboration with the University Writing Center and Lister Hill Library. Jaclyn Wells, Ph.D., University Writing Center director & Assistant Professor in the English Department, says the center is pleased to offer space for seminars and writers as well as promotion of “Writing Groups” and meet-ups. “The UWC is committed to supporting all levels of writers at UAB. Developing a network of fellow writers and establishing an effective writing process are two major steps doctoral students can take to write a successful dissertation. We are thrilled to help provide this kind of support to UAB’s promising scholars.”

Beginning in September, the Accelerate team will host monthly Third Wednesday lunch-time seminars (11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m.) on dissertation strategies:

September 18: Begin with the End in Mind: Create a Dissertation Timeline
October 16: Demystify the Challenge: Analyze a Model Dissertation in Your Field
November 20: Master Dissertation Diplomacy: Communicate with Your Committee  

In addition, the Graduate School will serve as a campus resource for dissertators seeking to form Writing Groups. “Research shows that dissertators working in small writing groups of 4-5 make more progress than those trying to go it alone,” says Greer, who credits such a group as being pivotal in her own dissertation journey and is currently involved in a faculty writing group with Wells.

Kellie R. Carter, Ph.D., instructor and lead on communication and events for the Graduate School, says the team plans to offer Writing Group Starter Kits and initial coaching sessions to help doctoral students understand how to make the strategy work for them and the resources that are available for them on campus. “If we can ever get writing groups to be as prevalent as journal clubs at UAB, we could help all research writers boost productivity.”

For more information, contact Jennifer L. Greer at or Kellie R. Carter at  at the UAB Graduate School.

Graduation News

Hooding CeremonyUAB master's and doctoral students take part in two ceremonies: The Doctoral Hooding and Commencement Ceremony, held at the Alys Stephens Center, is the commencement ceremony for doctoral candidates receiving PhD, DrPH, DSc, and EdD degrees. The Commencement Ceremony, held at Bartow Arena, is for master’s and EdS graduates. August graduates may attend the December commencement. The December Doctoral Hooding Ceremony will take place on Saturday, December 14 at 12:00 p.m.

If you are a doctoral candidate who graduated in August 2013 or will be graduating in December 2013, you must fill out the commencement form no later than November 29 located at in order to participate in this ceremony.

The Commencement Ceremonies for master's, EdS and bachelor’s students will be held in Bartow Arena at 9:15 a.m. and 2:00 p.m., according to the graduate’s school, on Saturday, December 15. All master's and EdS graduates who would like to attend commencement will find graduation information online at

Don’t Forget These Deadlines!

When a candidate is near graduation, she or he must pay close attention to Graduate School deadlines, which are posted online at Important dates include the following Fall and Spring semester deadlines:

Fall 2013 Deadlines


Application for Degree

September 6, 2013

Defense Deadline   

November 1, 2013

Admission to Candidacy 

August 25, 2013

Change of Residency

August 1, 2013  


Spring 2014 deadlines


Application for Degree

January 17, 2014

Defense Deadline

March 21, 2014

Admission to Candidacy

January 6, 2014

Change of Residency 

December 1, 2013 

Detailed information regarding Completing a Graduate Degree is also available at Completing all paper work and final payments by the posted deadlines will ensure that a candidate will graduate by the expected date.