More than 150 deans, assistant deans and staff members from all 20 graduate schools in North Carolina are meeting on campus Friday to discuss the future of graduate education.
“This is a chance for institutions to talk about what they’re engaged in now and the future direction of graduate education,” said Lorna G. Moore, dean of the Wake Forest Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. “How do we prepare the next generation of professionals?”
The N.C. Conference of Graduate Schools’ annual meeting is being hosted by Wake Forest. Moore, who is chairing the conference, is the incoming president of the statewide graduate school organization. The conference will be held in the Benson University Center.
James Wimbush, dean of the Graduate School at Indiana University, will lead a session on “the path forward” for graduate school education. Alan Kendrick, assistant dean for graduate student professional development at Duke University, and Douglas James, assistant dean for academic affairs at Duke, will discuss “the changing landscape of careers for graduate students.” Patrick Brandt, director of biomedical graduate training at UNC-Chapel Hill, will talk about UNC’s efforts to recruit and retain students from underrepresented groups.
Stephen J. Susalka, assistant director of Wake Forest’s Office of Technology Asset Management, and Les Boney, an associate vice president for economic development, research, policy and planning for the UNC system, will led a session, “From Innovation to Application,” to discuss bringing graduate students’ and graduate faculty members’ research discoveries into products and services. Staff members will attend a session on conflict resolution and best practices.
The deans will also begin planning for the first N.C. “Graduate Education Week” to be held in the spring to promote awareness of the key role played by graduate programs in developing North Carolina’s economic future.
The conference will also address the growth of programs in new areas, such as environmental policy, sustainability and biotechnology. Wake Forest has new graduate programs in bioethics and documentary film.
The graduate schools’ annual conference is held at a different university each year.
— by Kerry M. King (’85), Office of Communications and External Relations