DGS blog

May 03, 2018

May Update for Graduate Students

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This monthly update is sent to SFU graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.

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Awards Timelines 

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

See our Summer Awards Timeline.

Summer 2018 External Doctoral Scholarships Roundup: A list of external doctoral scholarships

External Fellowships Roundup: A list of external fellowships

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SFU Awards

  • SFU Private Awards, due to the generosity of our donors, we can offer a number of private/endowed awards to our graduate students. These awards vary in eligibility, amount and number depending on the terms of reference of the award, earliest deadline: June 1 2018
  • Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship, provides funding to the very best postdoctoral applicants, both nationally and internationally, who will positively contribute to Canada's economic, social and research based growth. Preliminary selection deadline: June 22, 2018
  • Graduate Fellowships, up to $6500, deadlines vary by department
  • Travel/Minor Research, primarily intended to support the travel component of the scholarly activity of graduate students related to their research, deadlines vary by program
  • Graduate [Int'l] Research Travel, for students traveling for research as a degree requirement, deadlines vary by department
  • President's PhD Scholarship, $6500, deadlines vary by department
  • Canada-Brazil Ciência sem Fronteiras Scholarship Program, provides funding for students pursuing graduate studies at the Doctoral (PhD) level in science & technology, recommended to apply for a scholarship 9-12 months before your intended program begins
  • Schwarzman Scholars, highly-selective, fully-funded scholarship program, based at the Tsinghua University in Beijing, deadline: September (May for China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, or Macao passport holders)
  • SFU Central Open Access Fund, to help publish work in open access journals, up to $2500/article
  • GSS Professional Development Grants, $499 for graduate students presenting at conferences or engaging in field research. Deadline: July 3 2018 for travel occurring between August 1 2018 - September 30 2018

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Tri-Council Awards

Tri-Council (CIHR, NSERC or SSHRC) Award Holder Resources
Visit the Award Holder Resources page on the Scholarships and Awards section of our website to find out how to accept, defer, interrupt your award payments.

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Mitacs Awards

  • Mitacs Accelerate, supports collaborative research between grad students or postdocs and non-academic partners, including industry and eligible not-for-profit organizations. You can create your own research partnership, paid at $10–15,000 per term. The program is open to all academic disciplines, applications are non-competitive. Apply anytime.
  • Mitacs Accelerate International, up to $15,000 for research with a company anywhere in the world. Apply anytime.
  • Mitacs Elevate is like Accelerate, but exclusively for postdocs. Earn $60,000 per year for research with a non-academic partner. The partner provides $30,000 per year, Mitacs provides a matching $30,000 plus professional development training. Call for proposals opens May 2018.
  • Mitacs Globalink Research Awards provide $6,000 travel funding for research collaborations of 12-24 weeks at a university in any of Mitacs’ partner countries. Learn more about eligible destinations and award details. Multiple rolling deadlines a year.

Questions about anything Mitacs-related? Please email SFU’s Mitacs rep Allison Brennan at mitacsbd@sfu.ca. Allison is available to meet at any of SFU's campuses.

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External Awards

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Student Jobs

Student Jobs Roundup
We track on-campus student job postings and collect them in a continually-updated blog post. The Summer 2018 Jobs Roundup is now available on our blog and will be updated until the end of May. Many student jobs come up with very short notice, so we only have enough time to post them to the graduate students' Facebook group.  

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.

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Jobs Roundup

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Volunteering Roundup

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Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Events

Resume Workshops, 1:30-3:30 pm May 8 2018; 10:30-12:30 pm June 4 2018
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. To register for this workshop, log onto myInvolvement

Non-Academic Job Search for Grad Students and Postdocs with Anne Krook
In this free three-hour session, you will learn how non-academic employers think about graduate students as potential employees, how to get ready for the non-academic job market while you are still in graduate school, and how to conduct a job search. In this inspiring and eye-opening seminar Dr. Krook will review her own path through and out of academia. 

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Mitacs Events

Mitacs Training
These workshops provide grad students and postdocs with career-ready skills. These full one- and two-day workshops are facilitated by professionals in the field and are free to current grad students and postdocs. Check out the calendar to learn more about upcoming workshops at SFU.

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Teaching and Learning Centre Programs

Creating and Using Graphics, Wednesdays until May 23, 2018
Do you need one-on-one technical support for your latest visual presentation project? The TLC’s media designer now offers private, just-in-time consultations on creating presentation visuals, such as diagrams or infographics, via graphic software programs.

Private Voice Sessions, May 31-August 30, 2018
Private voice sessions are 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.

Fall 2018 Certificate Program in University Teaching and Learning, September 14 - December 7
Are you a graduate student intending to apply for a teaching position? If so, reflecting on your teaching, improving your skills, and developing your practice may give you an advantage. This is a four-month, 120-hour, Senate-approved non-credit certificate for SFU graduate students who are aiming for employment in post-secondary institutions. The program is offered in the spring and fall terms of each school year. Register to attend by May 25.

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Research Commons

About the Research Commons
The Research Commons space on the 7th floor of SFU Burnaby's W.A.C. Bennett Library is exclusively accessible to graduate students, faculty, and postdoctoral fellows by a door access punch-code which is regularly changed. The space is equipped with wireless internet access, PC and Mac workstationsbookable group rooms, and areas for discussion and relaxation. Several free workshops and services specific to graduate students and postdoctoral fellows are offered throughout the term.

Pronunciation for Social, Academic, & Professional Settings, April 30-May 4, 2018
This non-credit course provides the rules, learning strategies, and contextualized practice in the stress, rhythm, and melody of English words, phrases, and discourse. Students will also learn how a Canadian accent differs from American, British, and Australian varieties of English by analyzing popular TV shows.

The Nuts and Bolts of NVivo for Mac
In this hands-on introductory workshop, you'll take a tour of the NVivo software environment, using sample data. You’ll be introduced to NVivo’s functions and you’ll leave equipped with the basic info you need to begin working with NVivo. Topics introduced may include importing files and beginning coding. Note there are separate sessions for different operating systems and locations:

Time Management for Busy Students, May 10, 2018
Are you juggling work, school and other responsibilities? Attend this workshop to build skills that will help you live by your priorities; it will be a good investment of your precious time.

Using Commas: Key Guidelines, May 10, 2018
Comma use matters. Commas can change a sentence’s readability and its fundamental meaning. Come to this workshop and steer your way back to correct comma usage.

Academic Grammar & Writing, May 14-July 11, 2018
This non-credit course is divided into two four-week parts: (1) grammar for academic purposes; and, (2) academic writing. Part one provides a selective overview of the key areas of English grammar that you need to master in order to express yourself correctly and appropriately in academic writing. Part two allows you to practice paraphrasing skills, summary writing, and essay writing.

Improve Your Reading Effectiveness, May 14, 2018
This workshop will cover how to effectively learn from various types of readings (textbook, journal article, online source), with a variety of academic purposes in mind (test prep, paper writing, discussion).

Study Strategies that Work!, May 14, 2018
Learn which study strategies are most strongly supported by research, and how to maximize your focus while studying.

Thesis Template and Resources, May 16, 2018
This demonstration introduces you to the Thesis Submission process and the Thesis Template. It will begin with an introduction to required copyright permissions from the Copyright Office at SFU, followed by a review of the overall submission process (including deadlines and supporting documentation). Additionally, SFU Library's research data specialists will give instruction on how to preserve and, if appropriate, share research data for future uses.

Introduction to ArcGIS, May 16, 2018
Designed for students new to Geographic Information Systems (GIS), this workshop will introduce basic GIS concepts using the ArcGIS software environment.

How to Argue Academically, May 17, 30, 2018
In this 50-minute session, learn the particular rules governing academic argument as well as tips for developing and defending a solid argument in your written assignments. The events are taking place on the 17 and 30 at the Fraser Library (Surrey Campus) and Belzberg Library (Harbour Centre) respectively.

Plan Data, May 23, 2018
Draft a plan to manage your research data and ensure its openness over time. The focus of this workshop will be working with DMP Assistant, an online data management plan utility. A sample case will be provided or build a plan using your research.

An Introduction to Using Tableau for Data Visualization, May 23, 2018
Tableau is a data visualization tool that is being used to help analyze data and illustrate the patterns and insights behind them. This interactive workshop will introduce researchers or students to Tableau Public, a free access version of Tableau.

Getting Started With QGIS for Mac Users, May 24, 2018
QGIS is open-source GIS software for creating maps and viewing, editing, and managing spatial data in a wide variety of commonly used vector and raster formats. Free to download, QGIS can be installed on Mac, Windows, Linux, and Unix operating systems; however, this workshop will only cover QGIS for Macs. This workshop will provide an introduction to the basic features of QGIS using data from the Lower Mainland.

Preparing for your thesis presentation: Techniques to help you engage your audience, May 29, 2018
In this workshop, Tim Mossman will share his 20-minute PhD thesis presentation with PowerPoint.  Tim will first give his presentation (identity development of immigrant students) and then explain the techniques he used to design and deliver his presentation.  

Doing more with Tableau for data visualization, May 30, 2018
Tableau is a data visualization tool that is being used to help analyze data and illustrate the patterns and insights behind them. This interactive workshop is designed for researchers who are already familiar with Tableau Public, a free access version of Tableau.

Uncluttering Your Prose, May 31, 2018
"Too wordy. Redundant. Be concise." If you've ever received these kinds of comments on your papers--or if you just want to take your style to the next level--this workshop is for you! Learn techniques you can use right away to help you pare your prose and write with greater clarity, succinctness, and power.

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Miscellaneous Programs

New & Young Worker Health & Safety Orientation
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.

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Dates for Summer Term

May 3-18
You can enroll yourself and/or your spouse/dependent in the Graduate Health and Dental Plan (only if you started school in May).

May 7
Summer term classes begin. 

May 14
Deadline for submitting a U-Pass BC Exemption request for Summer 2018. Requests must be submitted by 4:30pm PST (Note: Students taking a course at UBC under the Western Deans' Agreement will be charged for two U-Passes if they don't submit an exemption request.)

May 18
Grad tuition and fees (including co-op practicum fees) are due and payable. A 2% penalty will be calculated and posted to your student account every month. 
End of Bursary application period (bursaries are awarded based on financial need; international students are eligible).

May 20
Last day for graduate students to enroll through self-service (late enrollment deadline).
Last day to drop with 100% tuition and ancillary fees. (If you were eligible for the May U-Pass BC, you will only be refunded for the June-August U-Pass BC).
Last day to change from credit to audit grade basis.

May 21
Victoria Day; all classes cancelled and offices closed.

May 27
Last day to drop with no notation on transcript.

May 31
Last day for receipt of grades deferred from the Spring term.
Early Completion submission deadline of Thesis at 4 pm. Last day to drop with a 75% refund of tuition; no refund of May U-Pass BC and ancillary fees.
(Only applicable to new international students) Last day to opt out of Guard.Me@SFU (see medical insurance deadlines).

June 12-15
Convocation for students who completed in Spring 2018.

June 30
Last day to drop with a 50% refund of tuition. No refund of ancillary fees.

See all the Dates and Deadlines for Summer 2018.

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Student Information 

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Student Resources

At Simon Fraser University:

External Resources:

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In the News

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Contest Roundup

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Reading Roundup

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

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Events for International Students

International Graduate Student Orientation
If you are new to SFU in the summer term, attend the International Orientation! You will learn about enrollment requirements, medical insurance, and also meet other incoming students. Registration is free and a light lunch is included.

International Graduate Teaching Assistants Program
This free graduate seminar is specially designed for teaching assistants and graduate students who speak English as an additional language and helps with their academic communication and teaching skills. It is available as a 3-session or 10-session program. Registration is required.

Burnaby Festival of Learning, May 7 - May 10 2018
This three day event is a discourse on racism and how others can help by becoming an ally. Register on the Burnaby Festival of Learning website.

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International Services for Students

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

International Student Advising
In addition to in-person advising in Vancouver and Surrey, International Services for Students is now offering in-person advising on the Burnaby campus, Monday-Friday. You can also speak with an International Student Advisor by email (intl_advising@sfu.ca) and by phone (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.

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Resources and Information

International Graduate Student Coordinator
Need help and don’t know where to start? Connect with Tomke Augustin, International Graduate Student Coordinator. You can find her in the Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies CAPE Office (MBC 1500). Drop-ins welcome! You can also connect with her via e-mail at gradintl@sfu.ca or at 778-782-9284.

Career Services Support for International Students
Are you planning your career after grad school? Career Services offers international student career support on Burnaby and Surrey campuses. Drop by to get advice from international career peer Alireza on resumes, cover letters, interviews and jobs on campus.

Health & Counselling for International Students
Studying in a new country has many challenges. Whether you're looking for assistance with managing school stress, finding housing, understanding documents or Canadian services, the Transition Case Manager is available for one-to-one support. Learn how to make an appointment.

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.

Passport Stamp Update
The Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) no longer stamps all passports at airports with Primary Inspection Kiosks, including Vancouver International Airport (YVR). If you require a stamp, you will need to request one.

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

Islamophobia Hotline
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.

Recommended Readings

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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 gradintl@sfu.ca. Alina is also available to meet you at the Burnaby campus.

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Student News

  • SFU Indigenous PhD Candidate, Krista Stelkia, has been awarded a prestigious CIHR Doctoral Award for her doctoral research that aims to examine how structural racism impacts chronic disease within Indigenous communities. Congratulations!
  • The SFU Teaching and Learning Centre continues to take steps to 'Indigenize' as per the ARC Report Calls to Action. This includes a current search for an Associate Director, Indigenous Initiatives in the TLC; staff e-mail signatures now acknowledging Coast Salish territory; and the acquisition of Indigenous art and maps for posting in the TLC offices.

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Events and Opportunities

Métis Dance in Vancouver, starting 7:30 pm May 5
Please join us for our Annual Spring Dance Fundraiser at The Hall at 1739 Venables to support the ongoing activities of V'ni Dansi and the Louis Riel Métis Dancers. Silent Auction, Snacks and Surprises! A Family-friendly event. Everyone is Welcome! Tickets are $10 Adults and $5 for Seniors and Students Contemporary Métis dance modernizes traditional forms yet still pays homage to the cultural roots of each dance. Meaning “Come and Dance” in Red River Michif, V’ni Dansi is thrilled to share the Métis people’s joyful culture with audiences of all nations.

Educational Studies Symposium 2018, 8:30 am - 3:30 pm May 10
Please join us for the Educational Studies Symposium, “Conversations with Jo-ann Archibald about Indigenous Storywork as Pedagogy and Methodology” at UBC First Nations Longhouse, 1985 West Mall. RVSP by May 4, 2018.

Call for Participants at NWT Health Conference in Yellowknife, May 22-24
Hotıì ts’eeda is pleased to announce that additional spaces have opened up for attendance at the 2018 Ełèts’ehdèe Annual Gathering, under the theme of: Decolonizing NWT Health Research. The Ełèts’ehdèe a space for community members, health researchers, government and community partners to meet and connect, learn about our organization and share information about health research in the Northwest Territories. The Ełèts’ehdèe includes plenary panels on health and health research topics, storytelling and sharing about ongoing projects, cultural activities and space for connecting across disciplines and regions. Funding may be available to support travel and attendance at the Ełèts’ehdèe.

Salish Singing and Drumming Workshops, May 24
Learn traditional Salish social songs, drumming and dance with instructor Russell Wallace. Workshops are free and open to everyone! Workshops are held at the Goldcorps Centre for the Arts (Vancouver campus).

Indigenous Women's Stories of Journeying Through University Towards Their Career
Indigenous female post-secondary graduates, we need your voice. We are looking to identify how post-secondary institutions can increase indigenous female student population, retention and graduation.

Please join us to participate in an individual interview or sharing circle. We would love to hear about your experience succeeding in university and transitioning into your career. Recent graduates from the University of Calgary, Mount Royal University, and Simon Fraser University are welcome to participate. In gratitude, participants will receive a gift card. Please contact us if you are interested in participating.

Research Project Contacts:

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Scholarships and Awards

Indspire's Building Brighter Futures Program, August 1
Indspire is offering a number of bursaries and scholarships to Indigenous students studying in graduate degree programs. These awards are available to Indigenous students studying within Canada, however graduate-level studies outside of Canada will also be considered. Application deadlines are February1, August 1, and November 1, and of every year.

CIHR Indigenous Gender and Wellness Travel Award, November 2018
Do you have an idea or potential project related to gender that could improve wellness in your community? If so, this initiative is for you! Indigenous young adults, researchers, allies, organizations and Indigenous community members are invited to apply for funding to participate in this CIHR Idea Fair and Learning Circle. The Travel Award request for applications will be available on the Institute of Gender and Health website in June 2018. If you would like to receive updates on this initiative and be notified when the request for applications launches, please email us at igh-isfh@criugm.qc.ca

Indigenous Graduate Student Travel Award
The Indigenous Graduate Student Travel Award provides financial support for Indigenous graduate students to present their research at academic conferences. Students can only apply for the Indigenous travel award once per academic year. Indigenous graduate students may apply for this fund before conferences to pay for their conference fees and/or travel costs in advance. Disbursements of up to $1000 may be applied for in each academic year (starting September 1 of each year). For more info connect with Denver Lynxleg, Indigenous Graduate Student Coordinator gsindig@sfu.ca

Indigenous Diabetes Management Postdoc Scholarship Announcement
The I-HEART Centre (Indigenous Health Education Access Research Training), in Partnership with Boehringer Ingelheim (Canada) Ltd and the University of British Columbia’s School of Kinesiology is proud to announce the I-HEART Centre Indigenous Diabetes Management Scholarship. This Postdoctoral Research Fellow position Has Been generously funded by Boehringer Ingelheim Canada. The funder will have no Involved or influence on the academic research process. Please direct any inquiries relating to this scholarship to Rebecca Lee Research Manager, Programs and Strategic Planning I HEART Centre (Indigenous Health Education Access Research Training) at rebecca.c.lee@ubc.ca

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Graduate Student Society News and Events

Open Budget Consultation Discussion, 2-4 pm May 8 2018

Concerned with where your GSS fee money is going? Bring any questions, concerns, or ideas to this informal to share your voice; the discussion will help guide the 2018/19 budget.

Non-Academic Job Search for Grad Students and Postdocs with Anne Krook, 9 -12 pm May 23 2018
How to turn your significant skills into a career outside academia? In this session, you will learn what non-academic employers think about graduate students as employees, and how to conduct a job search for non-academic jobs while you are studying. A tool will be reviewed and provided that assesses your skill set in order to discuss creating a revised resume. Attend in-person or online by registering via Eventbrite.

GSS Graduate Caucus Funding, next deadline: June 1 2018
Every graduate caucus gets money to spend on almost anything that benefits the grad students in your department. See the GSS Caucus Funding Spreadsheet for funds available to you for the rest of this fiscal year.

Volunteer Opportunities
The GSS is actively seeking volunteers among our members to serve on our Benefit Plan and Governance Committees. If you have any further questions or are interested in this opportunity, please contact the Executive Director, Pierre Cenerelli (pierre.cenerelli@sfugradsociety.ca).

Discounted Playland Tickets
These are available using the GSS discount code, and include general admission and season pass discounts for general and junior admission. This code is posted in the GSS Lounge and available by email (info@sfugradsociety.ca).

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Events on Campus

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Events Around Metro Vancouver

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Calls for Proposals/Participants

Beyond the Professoriate: Online Career Conference for PhDs, May 5 & 12
This event will include two days of sessions presented by PhDs employed in non-faculty careers in Canada and the United States. Typical attendees are STEM, social science, humanities, psychology, and education graduate students and postdocs.

Support for IDeA Applications, deadline: May 15 2018
The Innovative Design for Accessibility (IDeA) student competition aims to inspire students to use their creativity to develop innovative, cost-effective and practical solutions to accessibility-related issues resulting in communities that are more accessible for persons with disabilities. Submission deadline ends May 15.

R in Montreal 2018, July 4-6
R in Montreal 2018 is a bilingual conference for the users of R in Montreal and the surrounding area. There will be posters and contributed talks about new developments and applications of R in several domains (machine learning, bioinformatics, finance, etc).

Beyond citations: from academia to the workplace
The Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI) invites graduate students to submit an executive summary of their research to be published on the CCDI website. Research could include a thesis, a chapter, a report, or any other previous publications. Successful applicants will be awarded a one-year CCDI individual practitioner subscription (value: $199).

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