Hello graduate students,

Well, we’ve almost made it through this most unusual summer, and an atypical fall semester is right around the corner! I hope that you are doing well and finding good ways to stay connected and engaged.

I know that many of you have questions about the semester ahead and that keeping up on all the information in this fluid and changing environment can be a challenge. Below you will find some helpful updates on a number of topics.

COVID-19 information and Resources
Please review the UNLV COVID-19 website. It is full of relevant information and it is updated regularly. Likewise, specific updates and information for the graduate community are shared and routinely updated on the Graduate College COVID-19 webpage.

Virtual Graduate Orientations
This year, both New Student Orientation and Graduate Assistant Orientation will be held virtually in UNLV’s WebCampus platform. Beginning Aug. 10, all new graduate students and all graduate assistants were given access to their orientation modules in their WebCampus/Canvas accounts.

The Graduate College will give away four $500 scholarships to new students who successfully complete all New Graduate Student Orientation module tasks. Recipients must enroll in at least six graduate credits in both Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 and must have completed a FAFSA or alternative FAFSA to qualify for these awards. The scholarship drawing will be on Friday, Sept. 4. To qualify, students must complete all modules and their tasks by Sept. 3.

Please note that, given that we are working in a dynamic and changing educational environment, new and returning graduate assistants are required to view the modules and complete the brief quizzes by Sept. 3 in order to be sure they have all the up-to-date information they need.

Strategies for Online Learning Success
The Office of Online Education is hosting a town hall about online learning strategies for students, parents, partners, and housemates. Students are invited to join the town hall at 3 p.m. on Aug. 14.

Student Life Facility Fee
In recognition of the economic challenges that many of our students are facing, UNLV will reduce the Student Life Facility Fee by $50 for the Fall 2020 semester. While this is called a “facility fee,” this fee covers both the maintenance of student facilities and programming for students. UNLV plans for the Student Union and the Student Recreation and Wellness Center to be open during the semester, and many student programs, services, and resources will be offered remotely.

Returning Safely to Campus Training
Students returning to campus for any reason are strongly encouraged to complete the Returning Safely to Campus Training. Once students return to campus, they are required to use the COVID-19 Health Assessment Tool available in the RebelSafe app every day to ensure they are symptom-free before coming to campus.

Internships and Experiential Learning
With safety top of mind, UNLV has provided guidance on internships and experiential learning during the COVID-19 pandemic. This guidance is general and acknowledges the many considerations of the varied disciplines at the university.

Technology Loan Program
UNLV’s loaner laptop program will be available again this fall semester. It is now called the UNLV Technology Loan Program, as it includes laptops, cameras/microphones, and a limited number of hotspots. Devices for students are available for extended checkout for the fall semester. Students can make a technology request by submitting the Technology Loan Program survey. After completing the survey, students will be contacted and provided available pickup dates through Lied Library. Students should return items to the Lied Library at the end of the semester.

Announcing Thesis/Dissertation Defenses
Please remember that even though thesis/dissertation defenses are currently being held remotely, the policy about announcing them remains the same. Defenses are public and must be advertised (date, time, location -- including login link and password for virtual defenses) through UNLV. If you are defending your thesis or dissertation this semester, please review the instructions on how to announce your defense. All defenses must be publicized through the Graduate College two weeks in advance. Learn more.

New Graduate Student Advisory Board
The Graduate College is forming a Graduate Student Advisory Board, which will work with the Graduate College on important issues affecting graduate students and graduate education at UNLV. If you would like to partner with us in this capacity, please email Graduate.Dean@unlv.edu with a brief statement explaining your interest in serving. Thank you!

Job Opportunity: UNLV COVID-19 Contact Tracing Team
The UNLV School of Public Health has recently received a $3.5 million grant to expand its student-run COVID-19 contact tracing team. The school plans to hire 200 UNLV students to assist the community in this endeavor. Learn more and apply.

Aug. 4 Student Town Hall
If you missed UNLV’s Aug. 4 Student Town Hall, a recording of it is available.

We know these continue to be challenging times, but please remember we are here to help in any way we can. Please don’t hesitate to reach out.

All my best,
Kate Korgan, Ph.D.
Dean, UNLV Graduate College
UNLV is an EEO/AA/Title VI/Title IX/Section 504 institution. All qualified applicants to the Graduate College, and admitted students, will receive equal consideration without regard to race, color, national origin, religion, sex, pregnancy, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, age, disability, or covered US veteran status.