Call for Volunteers: MDRF Summer Review Council Members

Dear Colleague:

The Mark Diamond Research Fund (MDRF) is currently searching for graduate students to serve on the Summer 2017 review council. Additionally, we are looking for 5 alternate council members.

Your responsibilities include serving on a one review council, with adequate time to review the grant(s) you are given. It will additionally include one council meeting where you will be given a full brunch/lunch as a thank you for your time. The council will be reviewing approximately 20 applications in each meeting. Each reviewer will be asked to read three to four complete applications as a primary reviewer and six to eight summaries (abstract, budget, and budget justification, and supporting documents) as a secondary reviewer. Primary reviewers should be prepared to give a three to five minute informal presentation on each full application. Secondary reviewers should be prepared to add to the discussion.

Summer 2017 review council meetings are scheduled for:

Thursday, June 15, 2017 from 10:00am to 2:00pm
Friday, June 16, 2017 from 12:00pm to 4:00pm

If you are willing to serve on the council, please fill out this survey:

We will contact you to confirm the committee meeting you are assigned to. Please feel free to contact us at should you need more information, or have any questions.

All the best,

Jennifer Schechter, MDRF Director
Brittany Kenyon, MDRF Assistant
Graduate Student Association
310 Student Union

UB Support of Students with Care Responsibilities – An Open Letter to UB’s Administration

Dear President, Provost, Vice President for Student Life, and Deans:

As the representative of over 7,000 graduate students, and with the full support of all student government leaders representing the entire student body at the University at Buffalo, we send you a report on the status of students with care responsibilities, with a focus on parenting students. As student government leaders, we are concerned with the lack of support and the manifold access barriers that students who are parents face, especially in light of the freedom from discrimination based on familial status, marital status, and gender that UB promises under Title IX.

Based on a preliminary survey of parenting students, and as a result of conversations with key stakeholders across campus, we recommend UB implement a task force this summer whose sole purpose is to assess the access barriers that students with care responsibilities face. We call on UB to broaden its support of parenting students campus-wide by instituting a universal parental leave policy, expanding childcare assistance and hours, reducing spatial access barriers (such as the lack of lactation rooms and changing tables, as well as subsidized family-friendly on-campus housing), providing funding increases and creating an emergency loan program, and offering free or reduced family attendance at UB events and facilities. Other comparable R-1 universities offer far more support for students who are parents, and as a leader in higher education in New York state we would like to see UB continue to attract and retain the highest qualified students independent of their familial status. This can only be realized if UB reduces the access barriers that parenting students currently face.

Attached you will find a preliminary report, a plan for action, as well as student testimonials and the GSA resolution calling for support for parenting students at UB. We sincerely hope that this will propel UB’s conversation about discrimination and inclusive excellence into action, and look forward to being part of the university’s efforts to reduce access barriers for parenting students.


Tanja Aho

Tanja N. Aho
Department of Transnational Studies
PhD Candidate in American Studies
GSA President
University at Buffalo (SUNY)
310 Student Union (GSA) / 1010 Clemens Hall (TNS)
Buffalo, NY 14260

Suicide Prevention Week Initiatives

Buffalo Out of the Darkness Walk for Suicide Prevention

The UB Student Wellness Team (Counseling, Health and Wellness) has played a huge roll in planning and staffing the Buffalo Out of the Darkness Walk since its inception 10 years ago.  On September 9th, 2017, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention – Western New York Chapter (AFSP-WNY) will host its Tenth Annual Out of the Darkness Community Walk in Buffalo.  The walk will take place at Delaware Park, near the Buffalo Zoo. Funds raised from this event will facilitate suicide prevention research, educational programs, community outreach and survivor support. The walk will raise awareness about depression and mental illness, and the toll suicide takes on our community and on society. Suicide is a major national health concern that touches millions of people each year, taking an enormous toll on family, friends, co-workers, and the entire community.  Every year, nearly 1 million Americans attempt suicide, more than 40,000 die by suicide, and more than 20 million are affected by depression

Walk Video:

We need you! Please consider creating a team or join as an individual walker at:

Or join the UB Walkin’ Team at

If you have any questions you can contact me at the email address below.



Carissa Uschold, LCSW-R, RYT
Licensed Clinical Social Worker
Suicide Prevention Coordinator
Eating Disorder Treatment Team Coordinator
University at Buffalo Counseling Services
120 Richmond Quad
Buffalo, New York 14261
office. 716.645-2720

Petition for TA Living Stipend

The English Department has begun an attempt to secure a living stipend for Teaching Assistants. We are beginning to reach out to other departments, as we feel this is an issue for many TAs that would garner widespread support from graduate students and faculty.

Our hope is that this increase for which we are advocating might eventually apply to TAs within the SUNY system, but we also want to create awareness and support on this campus. We are hoping to bring this issue to the GSEU, but we also understand that stipend levels are different at different universities, and that the floor for TA stipends is quite low generally. Additionally, our GSEU staff here is limited and overworked.

For more information, please view the Petition:

Summer Research Institute

The Department of Sociology at the University at Buffalo is hosting a series of two-day research methods workshops in May. The links below describe the Summer Research Institute and the five modules that will be offered.

For more information:

To register:

Summer Research Institute

Please feel free to contact us directly via email at or at