tips and tricks

November Update for Graduate Students

November 06, 2017

Awards and Funding

SFU Awards

Tri-Council Awards
uncil Master's program,
 (CIHR/NSERC/SSHRC) provides $17,500 for 12 months to Canadian students. Deadline: December 1, 2017.

Tri-Agency Award Holder Resources page
Visit the Award Holder Resources page on the Scholarships and Awards section of our website to find out what happens to your award (CIHR, NSERC, or SSHRC) if you need to defer, interrupt, withdraw, or take a leave from your graduate program.

External Awards

External Awards with No Deadline

Recognition Awards

Awards Timelines 
We recommend scanning ahead because it takes time to prepare award applications and send reference requests. 

See our Fall Awards Timeline.

For a list of external doctoral and postdoctoral fellowships, please see the Fall 2017 Fellowships Roundup.


Bonus tip: Keep a running list of awards that you can apply for in your personal calendar. Even if you've missed this year's deadline, it will probably come up again next year and then you'll have more time to get your application in.

Job and Volunteer Postings

SFU Temp Pool and Student Temp Pool
SFU's Temp Pool and Student Temp Pool
 provide employment opportunities for SFU students. See also all SFU job postings, updated every Tuesday and Thursday.

Student Jobs Roundup
We track on-campus student job postings and collect them in a continually-updated blog post. The Spring 2018 Jobs Roundup is now available on our blog.

Jobs Roundup

Mitacs Accelerate Paid Internships
You can also set up your own internship, paid at $10–15k per term. (Recording of info session available.)

If you have any questions, please email Allison Brennan at Allison is also available to meet you and your supervisor at any of SFU's campuses.

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 Workshops

The APEX 4-Part Workshop Series is designed for advanced degree holders looking for structure and support in building their professional development plans. It will help you expand your professional network, build confidence, and translate your knowledge, skills and abilities to various audiences. Register through MyInvolvement.

Crafting Your Resume

If you're in job search mode (or will be soon!) this session is essential. Not only will you learn what works for your career document, but also learn tips and strategies to move beyond the resume, in terms of what works on paper and what works in the digital world. This workshop is offered on November 24, 2017. Register on MyInvolvement.

Building an Online Presence

This session will inform you on what kinds of content to curate, which stories to tell, and on which platforms as well as how to be intentional about expanding connections and build authentic relationships, while standing out to potential employers and funders. This session is offered on November 22, 2017. Register on MyInvolvement.

Mitacs Events

​Mitacs Business Development Specialist for SFU
Dr. Allison Brennan is working exclusively with SFU faculty, students, and staff on all Mitacs internships and fellowships. She's available to you and your supervisor by appointment, Tuesday through Friday, and she's able to travel to all three campuses. Email to set up an appointment.

Teaching and Learning Centre Programs

Bring Yourself to Work Dialogues, November 6 and December 4

The Bring Your Self to Work Dialogues provide a place where instructors can gather and focus on the passion and purpose that drive their teaching practice. Join your teaching colleagues on the first Monday of every month to catch your breath, reconnect with your values, build community, and prepare for meaningful encounters with students. 

Better Presentations: Building Confidence and Connectivity, November 9

As a public speaker there are concrete steps you can take to increase the receptivity and alertness of your audience and to create a positive mood for learning. Learn to use the tools of intention, anecdote, gesture and humour to energize your message and captivate your audience.

Topic in Focus: SFU University Lecturer, November 14

The Collective Agreement now has a new rank for teaching faculty at SFU: University Lecturer. How do we define it? What are and should be the criteria used for promotion? We invite you to share your perspectives and the current practices in your department. 

Teaching Dossiers for Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Fellows, November 15

A teaching dossier documents your teaching approaches, experience and effectiveness in the classroom. In this workshop, you will be guided through the components of a teaching dossier, review examples, discuss commonalities and differences across the disciplines, and get started on your own teaching dossier. For more information and to register, visit the event page.

Topic in Focus: Advancing Teaching and Learning Inquiry at SFU: The Next Steps, November 27

The Institute for the Study of Teaching and Learning in the Disciplines established a foundation for recognizing and celebrating teaching and learning inquiry at SFU. Director Sheri Fabian invites you to join her for a conversation as she shares her vision and thoughts on her new role, the Teaching and Learning Development Grants program, and leading the Institute into its next phase.

Spring TA/TM Day, January 5

Save the date!

Private voice sessions

An opportunity for faculty members and instructional staff to work with Sanders Whiting, the TLC’s teaching enhancement specialist for voice, on public speaking skills. Each session will be 45 minutes and available to individuals or small groups who would like to explore the potential of voice work. Sessions run Mondays, 9:30-11:45 and 1:00-3:15 until December 4.

Research Commons 

The Research Commons is located on the 7th floor of W.A.C. Bennett Library and is exclusively accessible to graduate students, faculty, and postdoctoral fellows by punch code. The space is currently equipped with wireless access, workstations, bookable group rooms, and areas for discussion and relaxation. The access code to the Research Commons will change periodically.

The Research Commons offers a multitude of free workshops specific to graduate students and postdoctoral fellows throughout the term. Upcoming workshop themes include Digital Humanities, EAL/ESL, Learning, Research Data Management, Programming and Software, Scholarly Communication, Writing, and Thesis.

Graduate Open Writing Lab

The Graduate Open Writing Lab is for all graduate students who want the time and a quiet, dedicated space to work on their writing. Registration not required - please drop in!

  • Burnaby Campus: (Facilitated) - Mondays, 2:00 pm to 4:30 pm
  • Vancouver Campus: (Not Facilitated) - Thursdays, 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm
  • Vancouver Campus: (Facilitated) - Fridays, 11:30 am to 2:30 pm

New & Young Worker Health & Safety Orientations

The New & Young Worker Health & Safety Orientation is a mandatory workshop for all new employees hired to perform work at SFU. This includes TAs, TMs, RAs, postdocs, and event staff. Topics such as hazard and incident reporting, roles & responsibilities, worker rights, health & safety committees, emergency response, working alone and workplace bullying & harassment will be covered. Online version available.

Just-in-Time Professional Development Calendar 
A calendar of all professional development opportunities open to graduate students at SFU - all in one place!


You can also add it to your personal SFU Connect calendar. (Instructions are at the bottom of the page.)


Women in Technology
President's Dream Colloquium on Women in Technology: Attracting, Retaining and Promoting Diverse Talent
Reservations for the lectures are now open.

Donald Trump and the Spectre of Russian Intelligence: Featuring Dr. Christopher Andrew

  • Date: Tuesday, November 7
  • Time: 7:00 PM - 9:00 pm
  • Location: Room 1200, SFU Segal Graduate School of Business, 500 Granville Street
  • Cost: Free, but registration is required
  • RSVP: Please register on Eventbrite

Dr. Christopher Andrew, world-renowned espionage expert and MI-5 historian, discusses the allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 Presidential Election. He will present a lecture on Russian intelligence operations, how they might have sought to influence the US presidential election, and assess the vulnerability of other western democracies, including our own.

SFU Vancouver Speaker Series - The Future of Learning with Marina Kim

  • Date: November 15
  • Time: 7:00–8:30 pm
  • Location: Room 1200, SFU Segal Graduate School of Business, 500 Granville Street
  • Cost: $10 General, $5 for university students, free for high school students

The future of learning is upon us. How will universities adapt to the issues students face? Join SFU Public Square, SFU Vancouver, and SFU’s Vancity Office of Community Engagement to discuss the future of learning with Co-Founder and Executive Director of Ashoka U, Marina Kim and SFU’s Faculty of Education Dean, Kris Magnusson.

KEY Presents: The Data Visionaries Series

  • Learning Analytics: Beyond Data Science of Learning, Dragan Gaŝević, November 8
  • Deep Structured Models For Group Activities, Greg Mori, November 15 
  • Atlas Computing: Managing and Analyzing Petabytes of Data on the Worldwide LHC Computing Grid, Michel Vetterli, November 22
  • Lies, Damned Lies and Software Analytics: Why Big Data Needs Thick Data, Margaret-Anne Storey, November 29
  • Critical Data Studies or How to Desegregate Networks, Wendy Chun, December 6

Events on Campus

Events around Metro Vancouver

Calls for Proposals/Participants

UBC "Tracing Erasure" Graduate Symposium on Art History, Visual Art and Theory

This symposium welcomes submissions from all periods of art history and related disciplines that explore acts of tracing as political, social, and artistic phenomena in both the public and personal spheres. The AHVA Graduate Symposium organizing committee invites proposals for twenty minute-long paper presentations. Current and recently graduated master of arts, master of fine arts, doctoral, and postdoctoral scholars are encouraged to submit an abstract of no more than 300 words and a one-page CV to by December 21, 2017.

"Inside Jokes: Feminist Perspectives on Humour and Laughter" Call for Papers

Submissions are welcome for this collection of writing working to break down the stereotype of the "humourless feminist". As a whole, this work seeks to sideline caricatures of the humourless feminist by promoting a vision of a diverse movement vibrant with innovative, generous, threatening, and, untimately, truimphant laughter. Please send inquiries, abstracts, and proposals to Anna Frey ( The deadline for initial submission of abstracts in January 1, 2018.

GSS Director Elections and Referendum on Graduate Student Membership Fees coming soon!

More information is available on the GSS website.


Holiday Hamper Program

November 10th, 2017: Sponsor Registration Closes

November 20th to December 1st, 2017: Hampers are dropped off at the GSS

December 4th to December 15th, 2016: Hampers are available for pick up from the GSS


Tips and Tricks

Tips and Tricks

Contest Roundup

Reading Round Up

Want More Academic Readings?
If you're planning a career in academia, you're eligible for a free subscription to University Affairs.

Graduate Business Cards front
Graduate Student Business Cards 
Graduate students and registered postdoctoral fellows are able to order business cards through SFU Document Solutions. See our website for a walkthrough of how to order.





Engaging SFU
Look out for the results of  SFU's recent "Engaging the World" vision public consultation. 

International Graduate Students

US Travel Ban
SFU Student Services has a new website for students (and prospective students) affected by the US travel ban—includes travel advice.

Free confidential legal advice if you feel that you have been discriminated against, harassed, or faced violence because you are Muslim or are perceived to be Muslim.

International Student Advising
In addition to in-person advising in Vancouver and Surrey, International Services for Students is now offering in-person advising on Burnaby campus on Monday-Friday. 

You can also speak with an International Student Advisor by email to and by phone at 778-782-4232.

SFU ISS Resources
Handouts available to answer your questions: Resources for New Graduate Students and Medical Insurance – Frequently Asked Questions. See all of their Resources and Handouts.

EAL/ESL Support Services for Graduate Students 
If English is not your first language and you would like to improve your written and spoken proficiency, CELLTR has put together a roundup of free support services available at SFU.

End of Leniency Period for Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)
As of November 10, 2016, unless otherwise exempted, all visa-exempt foreign nationals must have an eTA to fly to or transit through Canada.  If you require an eTA to enter Canada and you do not have one you will not be allowed to board your flight to Canada. See ISS Handout on the Electronic Travel Authorization.

International Postdoctoral Fellows
Citizenship and Immigration Canada has a number of Permanent Resident (PR) programs for international graduates who wish to remain in Canada permanently. These programs include:

If you have any immigration related questions, please email Alina Roman, Postdoctoral Fellow Coordinator and Immigration Consultant at Alina is also available to meet you at SFU Burnaby campus.

Recommended Readings


SFU International's Weekly Newsletter
All international students receive a weekly newsletter from International Services for Students.   


Indigenous Graduate Students

Graduate School 101, workshop to answer your questions about graduate school and provide guidance on the application process. This interactive workshop will cover selecting a graduate school/program, application process/documents, timelines, and funding. The workshop takes place Thursday, November 16th at 4:30 pm in the Indigenous Student Centre (AQ 2002). Please register to attend by November 13.

Rising Up: A Graduate Students Conference on Indigenous Knowledge and Research in Indigenous Studies, University of Manitoba, March 9-10, 2018. Deadline for submission of abstracts is December 29.


In the News

Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Fellows in the News:


Dates and Deadlines

Dates for Fall Semester:

  • November 6-24 - Work-study application period.
  • November 6 - Last day for graduate students to drop classes with WD on their transcripts. Enrollment opens for Spring 2018 semester.
  • November 13 - All classes cancelled and offices closed for Remembrance Day.
  • December 4 - Classes end for Fall term.
  • December 6-17 - 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.)
  • December 15 - Deadline to apply on go.sfu for graduation in the June 2018 convocation ceremonies, if you are completing degree requirements in Fall 2017 term.
  • December 22 - Submission of all graduate degree requirements for 2017 Fall term (must be submitted by 12pm PST, see library submission deadline). Any Withdrawal under Extenuating circumstances (WE) requests received for the Fall 2017 term after this term will be considered as a retroactive WE.

See all the Dates and Deadlines for Fall 2017 and Spring 2018.



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