DGS blog

February 07, 2019

February 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
Scan ahead so you have time to prepare! Keep a running list of awards in your personal calendar; if you've missed this year's deadline, the award will come up again next year.

See our Spring Awards Timeline.

External Postdoctoral Fellowships Roundup: A list of external fellowships for postdoctoral fellows

Postdoctoral funding database: allows postdoctoral fellows to search for funding opportunities

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Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies Awards

Available Awards:

  • Graduate Fellowships, up to $6500, deadlines vary, search GA3 to see availability
  • External Dissertation Awards, recognize students who are graduating with outstanding thesis dissertations at master's and doctoral levels
  • Tri-Agency Awards (CIHR, NSERC & SSHRC) - 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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External Awards

Graduate & Postdoctoral awards available through external agencies:

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Mitacs Awards

  • Mitacs Accelerate Internship Opportunities, 4-12 months internship opportunities with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada (BBBSC) to start as soon as possible. Open until filled
  • 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, $55,000 per year award for a customized research management training program, along with a two year research project with a non-academic organization. The program is open to all academic disciplines. Multiple rolling deadlines a year.
  • 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.
  • Left & Mitacs Research Grant, offering 16 post graduate positions, alongside co-op positions, over the next 3 years. Various deadlines.

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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Recognition Awards

  • 2019 Nora and Ted Sterling Prize in Support of Controversy, The Sterling Prize seeks to award $5,000 to an individual whose work challenges normatives through unconventional and distinctly untraditional perspectives of the world. The Sterling Prize may be awarded to any SFU student, faculty member, alumni or an individual outside of the SFU community as long as the work either provokes controversy or contributes to it’s understanding; deadline: February 15, 2019

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Student Jobs

Student Jobs Roundup
We track on-campus student job postings and collect them in blog posts. 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, and subscribe to receive job alerts.

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Jobs Roundup

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Volunteering Roundup

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Mitacs Opportunities

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Signing up for the 2019 3 Minute Thesis (3MT) Heats now!

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.

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Teaching and Learning Centre Programs

Start Preparing for the 2019 3 Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition now, with Professional Development Workshops!

Breath Power, Posture and Pauses: Your Secret Allies for Public Speaking, February 28, 2019
Does your chest tighten when you speak publicly? Does your delivery become awkward when you face an audience? This two-hour workshop for instructors, staff members and graduate students in instructional roles will introduce techniques to increase your confidence, vocal power and ability to communicate in a relaxed way. The session will be facilitated by TLC voice specialist Sanders Whiting, who draws on his extensive background in music, theatre and education. Open until filled

Expressive Speech: Vocal Dynamism in the Classroom, March 14, 2019
Are you ready to trade your sleep-inducing monotone for a richer and more exciting sound? In this two-hour workshop for instructors, staff members and graduate students in instructional roles you will learn to apply the musician’s tools of melody and rhythm to become a more confident, colourful and dynamic speaker. The session will be facilitated by TLC voice specialist Sanders Whiting, who draws on his extensive background in music, theatre and education. Open until filled

Better Presentations: Building Confidence and Connections, March 28, 2019
Do you struggle to connect with your listeners? Do audiences seem like an intimidating sea of faces? This two-hour workshop for instructors, staff members and graduate students in instructional roles will show you how to build confidence, warm up your audience, and create an inclusive and open atmosphere for learning. The session will be facilitated by TLC voice specialist Sanders Whiting, who draws on his extensive background in music, theatre and education. Open until filled

Private Voice Sessions, until April 9, 2019
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. Each session will be 45 minutes and available to individuals or small groups who would like to explore the potential of voice work. By appointment

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Research Commons

Start Preparing for the 2019 3 Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition now, with Professional Development Workshops!

Graduate Space
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.

Individual Consultation
Need one-on-one help? SFU graduate students are encouraged to book consultations with Research Commons staff and partners. If you have a general question, contact research-commons@sfu.ca.


Research Software, Research Data Management




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Miscellaneous Programs

Career and Professional Development Workshop Series Session 1 -- Getting Started
You’ll take stock of your current situation, interests and strengths; explore your values and priorities; and identify future possibilities using an evidence-based approach that allows for a deep dive into your stories and experiences from different chapters of your life. February 6th - 2:00-4:00pm or February 20th - 4:30-6:30pm. Register now.

Career and Professional Development Workshop Series Session 2 -- Connecting the Dots and Prioritizing
You’ll distill and prioritize what matters most to you and craft a Career Statement that will act like a compass and set you up for creating, recognizing and acting upon clues and opportunities to move forward. February 13th - 2:00-4:00pm or March 6th - 4:30-6:30pm. Register now.

Career and Professional Development Workshop Series Session 3 -- Taking Action and Moving Forward
Intentional exploration and taking action is 'where the rubber hits the road'. You’ll devise an action plan and identify ways to take meaningful actions to make well-informed career, work, and life choices. February 27th - 2:00-4:00pm or March 20th - 4:30-6:30pm. Register now.

TA/TM Well-Being Project
Teaching Assistants and Tutor Markers have a unique university experience as they juggle life as both a student and a teacher. The TA/TIM Well-Being Project supports TAs and TMs to enhance their own well-being and offers helpful strategies to create conditions for well-being within labs and tutorials.

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.

Effective Intercultural Communication
Registrations are now open for Effective Intercultural Communication. This is a 6-week long free facilitated online opportunity for students who would like to increase their intercultural understanding and communication skills through developing self-awareness. 

Job Search Success
This is an online professional writing and intercultural communication course. You will improve your resume and cover letter while learning how to communicate in today's multicultural workplace; a skill employers look for today. Cost: $20; non-refundable after the start of the course. JSS is offered every semester; find registration dates on myExperience.

Sustainability-focused Student-led Program TumblerShare
A group of SFU students are working to make SFU more sustainable through a new program called TumblerShare. Partnering with Renaissance Coffee, TumblerShare is launched to reduce the number of disposable cups used on campus. Learn more here.

Criterion on Demand Film Resources
It gives current Simon Fraser University students, faculty and staff access to more than 3000 classic films of educational relevance, including 1500 in English, 1100 in French, and 135 in foreign languages with subtitles. Learn more here.

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Dates for Spring Term

February 18
Family Day. All classes and offices closed.

February 18-24
Reading break. Classes canceled. (Please note: this is for applicable departments only.)

February 26
Last day to drop with a 50% refund of tuition. No refund of ancillary fees or January/February U-Passes.

March 11-29
Work-study application period for the Summer term.

March 4
Registration opens for Summer 2019 term.

March 6
Last day for graduate students to drop classes with a WD on their transcripts.

March 25
Deadline for other Western universities to receive application forms for graduate students to take courses elsewhere under the Western Deans' Agreement.

See all the Dates and Deadlines for Spring 2019.

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Student Resources

At Simon Fraser University:


Now's the time to start preparing for the 2019 3 Minute Thesis Competition (3MT)!

External Resources:

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In the News

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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 Lunch’n’Chat
Join the weekly Lunch'n'Chat to hang out with other international graduate students. Wednesdays until March 27, 2019; 12:00-1:00 PM, location TBA

Spouses & Partners Meetup
Come join the weekly Spouse & Partner Meetup to connect with others, share experiences, and navigate life in Greater Vancouver together. Mondays February 4 – April 29, 2019; 10:00-11:00 AM, SFU Women’s Centre, All Genders Resource Area (TC 3014), SFU Burnaby Campus. Next week’s topic: Things to do in Vancouver’s winter.

Let's Talk Taxes: support for international graduate students and postdoctoral fellows
Support for international postdoctoral fellows and graduate students' to help you learn how to navigate the Canadian tax system in the most efficient, enjoyable, and money-wise way possible. February 21, Blusson Hall 10921, Burnaby campus. Reserve your seat.

Employment and Settlement Support
International grad students, are you wanting to settle in Canada, or do you need help with your job search? Come and see Xinge (Career Peer) and Sam (Settlement Specialist) for tips about settling in Canada, interviews, resumes, cover letters, finding jobs, and more. Your spouse/partner is welcome to drop-in as well! February 6, 13 and 27, various locations.

Trip to Harrison Lake and Bridal Falls
Join International Services for Students’ trip on Tue, Feb 19. Contact intl_programs@sfu.ca if you would like to bring your family.

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International Services for Students

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

SFU ISS Resources
Handouts available to answer your questions around study permits, health insurance, and housing: Resources for New Graduate Students and Medical Insurance – Frequently Asked Questions. See all of their Resources and Handouts.

International Student Advising
International Services for Students offers in-person advising on all three campuses. You can also contact them by phone or e-mail.

Global Community Mentorship Program
The Global Community Mentorship Program (GCMP) is a student-led volunteer program that connects new students with current SFU students. Their mission is to provide students with enriching cultural experiences, support their transition to Canadian life and introduce them to the SFU community.

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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.

International Graduate Teaching Assistants Program
The International Graduate Teaching Assistants Program 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. Plan ahead and register now for the summer term. Check out what past participants say about the program!

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

Support for your partner & family
Your partner is welcome to join the Spouses & Partners Meetup on Mondays 10-11 AM to meet other spouses/partners and discuss topics to navigate life in Vancouver. If you or your partner are looking for work or wanting to settle in Canada, speak with a representative of S.U.C.C.E.S.S to receive information about career mentorship opportunities and settling in BC. Drop by their table at various locations every other Wednesday from 2:30 to 4:30 P.M. If your spouse/partner would like to participate in the Tandem language exchange, keep an eye on the registration period for the Summer term. Stay tuned about upcoming events for graduate students with partner & family and join our SFU-Families Facebook group.

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.

Connected Globally & Adjusting Locally, Wednesdays, 2:00-3:30 PM
The Connected Globally & Adjusting Locally group provides students from international pathways with practical skills that will support their growth and success during their time at SFU. Drop-in; no registration required!

Interfaith Centre
The Centre provides a space and numerous events, workshops, and discussion groups for students to live their faith, and to increase the understanding of and respect for religious beliefs and practices.


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.

Islamophobia Hotline
Call the Islamophobia Hotline for 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.

Protect yourself from fraud
Protect yourself from fraud by finding out how to prevent fraud and how to report those who commit it.

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 and Resources

SFU Indigenous Graduate Student Coordinator (IGSC), Denver Lynxleg: New location on Burnaby mountain
BOOZHOO! Denver Lynxleg is the Indigenous Graduate Student Coordinator (IGSC), She is on campus every Tuesday and Thursday to support Indigenous students’ transition into graduate studies and enhance current Indigenous Graduate Students' holistic academic path through mentorship, workshops, and as a resource mediator. She is honoured to be a visitor on the traditional and unceded territories of the the xʷməθkwəy̓əm, Skwxwú7mesh, and Səl̓ílwətaɬ peoples, on whose traditional territories SFU’s three campuses stand. 

  • Hours: 9-5 pm Tuesday and Thursday
  • Office: Burnaby campus AQ 6085

To book an appointment: call 778-782-9222 or e-mail gsindig@sfu.ca

SFU’s Office for Aboriginal People’s Newsletter
Subscribe to the Office for Aboriginal People’s Newsletter to learn more about SFU Indigenous-related events, announcements and important dates. Read the latest issue here.

Indigenous Mentorship Network of the Pacific Northwest Newsletter
Subscribe to the Indigenous Mentorship Network of the Pacific Northwest Newsletter to learn more about the latest Indigenous-focused headlines, events and training, funding and job information, as well as resources and other unique opportunities. Subscribe here.

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Events and Opportunities

17th Annual Indigenous Graduate Student Symposium (IGSS) Reflecting Upon our Journeys: Leading the Path of Reclamation, Restoration & Resurgence Call For Submissions
This year the IGSS will be held at SFU Vancouver March 15-16, 2019 Keynote speakers: Grand Chief Stewart Phillip and Dr. Margaret Kovach.

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

2019 BC Indigenous Student Awards, March 31, 2019
BC Indigenous Student Awards (Apprenticeship, Certificate, Diploma, Undergraduate and Graduate Degrees) and BC Indigenous Teacher Education Awards are now available through the Irving K. Barber BC Scholarship Society.

Pre-Doctoral Fellowships for Indigenous Students, April 1, 2019
Open to Indigenous PhD students in Arts or Science other than Queen’s University.

Indspire's Building Brighter Futures ProgramAugust 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 February 1, August 1, and November 1, and of every year.

SSHRC Indigenous Research Capacity and Reconciliation-Connection Grants
Grants of up to $50,000 for 6 months for applicants affiliated with First Nations, Métis and Inuit not-for-profit organizations, as well as with other not-for-profit organizations or Canadian postsecondary institutions.

Aboriginal Ambassadors in the Natural Sciences and Engineering Award
Up to $5,000 grant for Aboriginal students and fellows to promote interest and participation in the natural sciences and engineering by visiting Canada’s Aboriginal communities and schools and sharing their research and education experiences or participating in science promotion events and activities; no deadline

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

Indigitization-Toolkit for the digitization of First Nations Knowledge Grant
Up to 10 k in matching funds/project supporting audio cassette digitization projects in First Nations and Aboriginal communities across BC.

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Graduate Student Society News and Events

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).

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Simon Fraser University Events

On campus:

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Events Around Metro Vancouver

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Calls for Proposals/Participants

Seeking Research Participants: Visual Cognition with Learning Analytics
Open to individuals who have completed IAT 201 or IAT. Deadline: February 16

Call All Researchers: Apply to Present at Innovations in Research
SFU Public Space is now accepting presenter submissions for this dynamic and interactive symposium taking place Wednesday, April 10, 2019 at SFU’s Vancouver campus. Deadline: March 4

Seeking Research Participants: Wavslang Study - Audiovisual speech perception of simultaneity
Open to Male native English speakers. Deadline: March 30

Seeking Research Participants: Mental Health and Perceived Loneliness Among Widowed Older Adults: Exploring the Effects of Gender and Social Support
Open to all older adults who are between the ages of 65-85 and identify as widowed. Deadline: May 17

SFU's Student Experience Initiative
The Student Experience Initiative (SEI) aims to enhance the experience of students by developing high-impact opportunities for engagement with the SFU community. Visit https://www.sfu.ca/vpacademic/SEI.html to learn more and learn about the various ways you can participate.

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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