Dean’s Message

As we head into the season of thanksgiving and I reflect on all the wonderful things we have been able to accomplish over this past year, I want to thank each and every one of you for your contributions and continued support of graduate education. Major accomplishments of the year include the recommendation to move forward with an external vendor to bring our graduate admissions process completely online by Fall 2014, the work of our Faculty Fellows to help develop recruitment material for all our programs and an online orientation for new students, a complete transition of our website to the new university template, the addition of new professional development opportunities for our students and the establishment of a new e-communication strategy for all admitted and matriculating students. A more extensive overview of the year’s accomplishments can be found at http://www.wmich.edu/grad/planning.
In addition, the year has been filled with opportunities to meet with many of our current students, alumni and friends of graduate education at WMU. In each of these meetings, all the stories documented how the friendships and the personal and professional relationships that have been forged, the commitment to student growth and development, and the opportunities that were provided have all contributed to individual successes. I think of these stories and how WMU has provided the educational home, family, and community for professional growth for our graduate students. I think, too, of a vision: a physical space, a home, a place for students to gather with other students and colleagues from around the world. I think of a place to learn within and across disciplines, a place to hold and celebrate theses and dissertation defenses, a place for a community of scholars, researchers and creative artists to gather to help others experience the excitement of their work. The vision: a building that we call the Center for Graduate and International Education. Let us know if you are willing and interested in helping us make this vision a reality.

Susan R. Stapleton, Ph.D.

Dean, Graduate College
A photo of Dr. Susan Stapleton, Dean of the Graduate College

Dean’s Message

As we draw near to the end of 2012 and take part in this season of thanksgiving and holiday excitement, I wanted thank all the faculty and staff who teach and support our graduate student body as well as the students themselves who have chosen Western Michigan University as their place of study. We are looking forward to the new year and the continued advancement of graduate education. If your financial situation allows, we would be honored by a donation in support of our efforts. We are hoping to grow financial assistance for graduate students as well as to support new initiatives to position ourselves as a destination of choice for graduate education.

May this holiday season be filled with many opportunities to make lasting memories.

Susan R. Stapleton, Ph.D.

Dean, Graduate College
A photo of Dr. Susan Stapleton, Dean of the Graduate College

Dean’s Message

It is a pleasure for me to welcome you to the readership of our first e-news for the Graduate College at Western Michigan University. In May of 2012, I was honored to be named Dean of the college (story) and am excited about helping to shape the future of learner centered, discovery driven, globally engaged graduate education at WMU.

As you know, graduate education is pivotal to our classification as a research university and ranking in national publications. The Graduate College and its staff serve as a hub for professional development opportunities and support services for graduate students as well as the gatekeeper of policies and procedures that ensure quality and excellence.

For the upcoming year, the staff and I have set a number of goals to enhance our services in support of graduate education at WMU. One goal includes increased outreach and communication to all our constituents. In addition to the e-news, we are excited to partner with the Graduate Student Advisory Committee to begin our Graduate Student Ambassador program that will help us to engage more with our current graduate student body as well as potential future graduate students and our alumni. We will be looking for ways to increase support for our students in their teaching, research and scholarship and global engagement. We will be seeking new ways to provide financial assistance for graduate students, in particular for critical times in their degree programs such as thesis or dissertation completion or when faced with devastating life occurrences.

We are excited about the possibilities and welcome your input and support aswe move graduate education forward at WMU.

a photo of Dean Stapleton

Susan R. Stapleton, Ph.D.

Dean, Graduate College