Enter our 50th anniversary grad photo contest! Prize is a pair of tickets to the September 9 Celebrate and Savour event. Five prizes valued at $70 each will be given away.

Tips and Tricks

August Update for Graduate Students

August 04, 2015

Hope you had a great BC Day break!  It's just one month to SFU's 50th Anniversary, and we're hosting a photo contest for grad students to win tickets to the 50th Anniversary gala event.

Awards and Funding

Vanier and Tri-Council Awards (NSERC / SSHRC / CIHR) Graduate Scholarship Workshop
Learn how to apply for a Vanier scholarship at our August 20 workshop, taking place from 2–3:30 pm online OR in-person at the Burnaby campus.

NSERC Workshops
Representatives from NSERC will be on campus on Thursday, September 10, 2:30–4:30 pm, LIB 2020 (Thesis Defence Room).

SSHRC Writing Group
Graduate students Scott Neufeld (Psychology) and Mina Sedaghatjou (Education) have started a series of six peer-support based, graduate student facilitated workshops for graduate students working on their doctoral and postdoc SSHRC applications to come together.  First meeting: Thursday, August 13th from 9 am–12 noon, LIB 2020, SFU Library, Burnaby campus.

Grad Student Society Bursaries
Mark your calendar for GSS bursaries, generally due in October.  

SFU Bursaries
SFU Financial Aid's Bursary application period is August 31–September 18.

SFU Staff Achievement Awards
Nominate an SFU staffer or team who has gone above and beyond the call of duty for grad students!

External Awards

External Awards with no deadlines 

Awards Timelines 
We recommend scanning ahead because it takes time to prepare your awards applications and request letters of recommendation. 

See our Awards Timeline page.



Job and Volunteer Postings

Fall 2015 Student Jobs
We're maintaining a list of student jobs for the Fall term. New jobs are added as we find them. They're also continuously posted to the SFU grad student facebook group.  

TA/TM/Sessional Job Postings
The Graduate Studies website hosts the central job posting system for all TA/TM/Sessional jobs at SFU.  

Sustainable SFU Directors
Sustainable SFU is looking for volunteers to fill in top leadership roles as Grant and Fund Development Officer or Treasurer.  

SFU Student Temp Pool
SFU's Student Temporary Pool provides employment opportunities for qualified SFU students registered in credit courses in the semester of employment.

Indigenous Student Centre Tutors
Undergrads can request tutors as needed. Fill out the Application to Tutor form to add yourself to the available tutors database. Rate is $25–$35 an hour depending on qualifications.

The Peak
Do you like to write? Take photos? Illustrate? The Peak is always looking for new contributors — and they pay, too. Contact promotions@the-peak.ca or join a weekly meetings on Wednesdays at 1 pm in MBC 2900. Something you want to see covered in the paper? Send your tips to eic@the-peak.ca.

Mitacs Jobs
Job postings at Mitacs, specifically Business Development Specialists, all across Canada. PhD required.

Mitacs Accelerate Paid Internships

SFU Student Ambassador Program
SFU's Student Ambassador Program is open for applications from students. Ambassadors get a few perks in return for short-term volunteer work.

New Graduate Student Orientation Volunteers
Would you like to help us welcome the new group of graduate students this September? Email Pamela Tannouri at student-life@sfugradsociety.ca or sign up through the Student Ambassador Program.

Volunteer Roundup


Student Jobs 
Many student jobs come up with very short notice, so we only have enough time to post them to the graduate students' facebook group.  

Professional Development

APEX Professional Development Program
Thinking about your transition after grad school? Wondering what you should put on your resume? Wondering how a web presence might help you find the job of your dreams? Check out the APEX workshops offered throughout the summer. View them all and register in MyInvolvement.

APEX Certificate Program
Thinking about your career? Not sure how to approach potential employers or build your network? Trying to understand how the skills and knowledge you're building in grad school will translate in the professional world after academia? Come to an info session and learn how the APEX program can help. This program is free for grad students — Register for an info session.

Body-Voice-Space: An Intensive Two-Day Voice and Presentation Skills Boot Camp
August 25–26, 9:30–3:30 pm, Burnaby campus. Registrations are open until workshop is full.

Biotech and Business MBB Course
SFU's Department of Molecular Biology and Biochemistry is offering MBB 400/700, a one credit course that gives you a taste and introduction to biotechnology and business.

Research Commons Space & Workshops 
The Research Commons is a spacious working area in the Bennett Library (7th floor), where graduate students can work on their research and writing in the company of other graduate students. (Link for door code.) The Library will be open 24/7 from August 7–20, which means that the Research Commons will also be available 24/7.

They run drop-in writing labs and other programs aimed at getting you through the thesis finish line. 

Note: There is currently grad student writing space available at Harbour Centre, Thursdays 3:30–6:30 pm and Fridays 10:30 am–2 pm.

Next Up Leadership Program
Next Up runs free programs for young (18–32) progressive leaders committed to social and environmental justice. Applications due by September 15.

SFU Passport to Leadership
Registration is now open on myinvolvement.sfu.ca for leadership, personal and professional development programs at SFU in Fall 2015. Cost is $75.

Mitacs Step Workshops 
Mitacs workshops are in high demand among all disciplines. They are free one and two-day professional development workshops for grad students and postdoctoral fellows, fully catered.

You can attend any session that Mitacs offers in BC (not only the ones held at SFU!). Coming to SFU this summer:

See list of all upcoming workshops & register here (click on BC tab). Unlinked courses listed above will be posted to the Mitacs website shortly. We'll send out alerts on Facebook and Twitter (see bottom of this email for links). Note that Mitacs workshops are open to graduated grad students for two years after graduation.


APEX Professional Development Calendar  
A full list of all professional development opportunities is updated regularly on our website. You can also add it to your personal SFU Connect calendar. Instructions are at the bottom of the page.



President's Dream Colloquium on Traveling for Health, Fall 2015
Through this colloquium, we seek to challenge participants’ understanding of what forms travel for health is taking and what impacts medical tourism is having both within Canada and internationally.

Applications are now open for this interdisciplinary colloquium graduate course and free public lecture series — all disciplines welcome. More course information.

President's Dream Colloquium Lectures

SFU Educator Talks
Both a learning experience and a social gathering, SFU Educator Talks will celebrate innovative teaching and bring educators together for a informal night of learning, fun and networking. Volunteers welcome!

SFU Scientific Programming Study Group
Weekly meetings for peer-facilitated study-sessions on topics from Python for DNA sequence analysis, plotting and statistical analysis of environmental data in R, automating repetitive tasks with the shell, general best practices in coding, using tools such as Git and Github to collaborate effectively with others, and much much more.

SFU 50th Anniversary

Events around Campus 

Events around Vancouver


Free Massages for Grad Students at Harbour Centre
On Thursday, August 6, Reserve va Doodle.com

Discounted Playland Tickets
The GSS has arranged for group sales for graduate students so that you can order cheaper tickets for Playland and the PNE.

The Beach Boys, Pat Benatar, the New Pornographers, Boyz II Men, and Hall & Oates, and more are all coming to Vancouver this summer for the PNE's Summer Night Concerts. If you buy through the GSS's code, a single day pass is $12 and season's pass for all 2 weeks of the PNE event is $42.50.

Tips and Tricks

Lockable Library Study Rooms in Burnaby
If you've completed all degree requirements except your thesis, you may be eligible to book a lockable study room at the WAC Bennett Library on the Burnaby campus. Applications due by Thursday, August 6.



Free Microsoft Office
All SFU students can install Microsoft Office for free.
(Adobe Creative Suite is also available for university-owned computers — could work for labs.)

Confirmation of Enrollment Request
If you need a confirmation of enrollment letter, you can do it yourself through GoSFU.

Open Access Fund
If you're publishing in an Open Access journal, the SFU Library has an Open Access Fund that graduate students can access.

SFU PhD Students Group
New Facebook group just started to connect PhD students with each other.

How to Survive Your PhD (free MOOC)
EdX has a free course from Australian National University, starting August 26. See also article about the course.

Research Studies

Contest Roundup

Reading Roundup  

Free Access to Lynda.com
All members of the SFU community have free access to Lynda.com through the SFU Library.

It's a great way to pick up new skills in everything from presentation skills to Photoshop to Excel to street photography and far more.




Graduate Student Business Cards
SFU graduate students are able to order business cards through SFU Document Solutions. The cost is $35 for 100 cards.


International Graduate Students

Lengthy Processing Times at CIC. Plan Ahead to Apply for or Renew your Immigration Documents

Processing times for study permit extensions and work permit applications made from inside Canada are currently almost 3 1/2 months. If you need to renew your study permit or apply for a co-op work permit, we recommend you begin the process earlier. If you have recently applied to renew your study permit or applied for a post-graduate work permit, you may find yourself in implied status. If you have questions or need clarification, please speak with one of SFU's International Student Advisors/Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants

New students: If you have any questions about getting settled in Vancouver or at SFU, you are welcome to contact Carolyn Hanna, our International Graduate Coordinator, at dgs-international@sfu.ca or drop by the Maggie Benston Centre, Room 1500.

Indigenous Graduate Students

Operation Blue Sky: Aboriginal Health Initiative
$35k in prizes for a workable idea for improved community health and wellness outcomes in remote Aboriginal communities.

Graduate Students in the News

Ottawa blocking supervised injection site that would save lives in Victoria
Recently-graduated PhD student Ehsan Jozaghi's paper in Urban Geography was featured in the Georgia Straight's article on supervised injection site in Victoria.

New diagnostic tool could hasten effective ovarian cancer treatment
Aïcha BenTaieb, computing science PhD student, was profiled in the Vancouver Sun for her work on helping to more quickly diagnose ovarian carcinomas.

Canadian study: fewer Orangutans left?
Brent Loken, PhD in Resource and Environmental Management, was featured on CBC Radio International.

Understanding the group Anonymous (see also story)
Josh Labove, Geography PhD student, on Anonymous and the Dawson Creek shooting.

SFU research finds sudden cardiac death may be triggered by change in body temperature
Mena Abdelsayed and Colin Peters, Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology PhD students, were on Global News.

Fat reduces strength of muscle tissue, SFU study finds
Hadi Rahemi, recently-graduated Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology PhD, was featured in the Vancouver Sun.

SFU student eyes app that will allow people to diagnose their own heart conditions
Alexandre Laurin, PhD student in Biomedical Physiology and Kinesiology, was featured in the Vancouver Sun.

Poh Tan on SFU Alumni Appreciation website
Dr. Poh Tan is pursuing a second PhD in the Faculty of Education.

Moving Forward Data Journalism Project
Caitlyn Millar, MRM candidate, is involved in this interesting project from Discourse Media.

Would you like to be in the news?
SFU News is starting work on the fall Convocation issue. They're looking for interesting stories about students who are engaging the world or their community, who are academic, athletic, or community stars, or who have an interesting story to tell about their SFU experience. Perhaps they are older or younger than most, have overcome adversity, or have pursued unusual research or co-op experiences.

Dates and Deadlines

Monday, August 10, 2015
Last day of classes.
Last day for graduate students to drop classes under special procedures applicable in extenuating circumstances (WE on transcript).

August 12–21, 2015
Examination period. If you are a current TA and want to pay to extend your TSSU medical insurance for up to two terms, application forms are due by the end of the term. (See also: All HR forms.)

Friday, August 14, 2015
Last day for graduate students who completed in Summer 2015 to apply for graduation (October convocation).

Friday, August 28, 2015
Fully graded date (transcripts requested for 'after grades' will be printed). Last day for submission of all graduate degree requirements for 2015 Summer term (library submission deadline).

September 9, 2015
Save the date for SFU's 50th Anniversary Celebration. Events will take place all day. (The cake is not a lie.) There is a Celebrate and Savour event that evening, $35 for students.

More dates and deadlines

Health plan deadlines

Degree Completion this Term?
If you think you will be completing your degree this term, please go ahead and Apply to Graduate.

It doesn't cost any anything for you to apply, and if you don't complete your degree requirements, we just cancel the application, and you can re-apply in the future.

(It's much trickier to add you to the graduation list after the graduation application deadline.)


Grad Students Facebook Group 
Advice and support, movies, free food — plus last-minute job postings and awards alerts: 
(SFU email ID required to join)

If you'd like to help us welcome the incoming graduate students over the summer, we have another group just for new students.