Welcome from Virginia Torczon, Dean of Graduate Studies and Research
It is a great pleasure to welcome you to William & Mary, to graduate studies in Arts & Sciences, and to our community of scholars and teachers. Allow me to begin by telling you a little about yourselves as a group.
For this year's entering class we received 747 applications and admitted 123 new students across the eleven graduate programs in Arts & Sciences – so you are among a competitive, select set of students. Most of you already have significant research experiences under your belt, and many of you have been active teachers and mentors. You will, of course, have many more such opportunities in the coming years. Your experience and your diverse interests, hobbies, and backgrounds are an important part of what makes our graduate program distinctive. We are a dynamic group of teacher-scholars striving for excellence in all of our endeavors.
While you are here we want you to immerse yourself fully in your studies and teaching. Make use of every resource, from the expertise and wisdom of your faculty to the professional development opportunities offered through our COLL courses and through programming with the Cohen Career Center. My goal as Dean of Graduate Studies and Research is to provide you with an enriching, nurturing, and challenging environment that will prepare you for future success.
As you look ahead, I encourage you to be mindful of the professional opportunities we provide as well as the possibility for recognition for outstanding efforts in research, mentoring, leadership, and service:
- Research and travel grants to facilitate and enhance your scholarship
- S. Laurie Sanderson Awards for Excellence in Undergraduate Mentoring
- Carl J. Strikwerda Awards for Excellence
- Distinguished Thesis and Distinguished Dissertation Awards
- The Thatcher Prize for Excellence in Graduate and Professional Study given each May at Commencement
The generous and supportive members of the Graduate Studies Advisory Board have provided funding for several of these awards and professional opportunities.
In partnership with the Graduate Student Association for Arts & Sciences, we encourage you to share your achievements through the Graduate Portfolio. This type of recognition will prove useful to you, and also helps us attract more support for you and for future graduate students. It's important that you all participate.
As you will quickly come to know, our academic community is friendly and informal – you can seek guidance and advice from anyone on campus – and in this spirit I encourage you to contact me if you think there are ways we can improve your graduate experience. Professor Hiroshi Kitamura serves as your Graduate Ombudsperson, and can be contacted for any confidential purposes.
I look forward to working with you over the coming years.
Dean of Graduate Studies and Research