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HDFS Steering Committee

What is the steering committee? 

A group of students that acts as a liaison between the graduate students and the program faculty, particularly the professor-in-charge and the department head.  We also conduct various events for the benefit of the college, department, students and community. The group holds a meeting once a month that is open to all graduate students in the program. These meetings offer an opportunity to update students on department activities, solicit graduate student involvement in faculty searches or other committees, and discuss any graduate student concerns and needs. 

How do I become involved? 

During the first week of classes you will receive an e-mail from the co-chairs asking you to select your availability for meeting times for the semester.  Once the co-chairs compile the preferences, the meetings will be set for once a month and we would love for you to attend. This will allow you to get to know more about the positions and the Steering Committee’s role in the department, as well as help you get to know other graduate students. The meetings are informative for all graduate students in the department. Then, as the year comes to a close, the committee will hold elections for new members, at which time you can volunteer to take on a role for the upcoming school year. For questions or concerns contact the co-chairs.

Steering Committee Positions

Co-chairs icon-olus-circle
  • Organize and facilitate monthly steering committee meetings. 
  • Organize the welcome picnic and HDFS student symposium.
  • New for 2021: Consider inviting in a diversity / inclusion training for Steering Committee chairs and all students.
  • Eligibility: 3rd year +
Admissions Committee icon-olus-circle
  • Serve on the admission committee together with faculty members, including reviewing applications, attending meetings, voting and discussing admission decisions.
  • Coordinate with staff to help organize visiting weekend events (meal buddies, housing tours, etc.).
  • NEW for 2021: Committee members are requested to engage in a formal PSU diversity training (the faculty chair of admissions committee should facilitate this).
  • Eligibility: 4th year +
Student Advisor icon-olus-circle
  • Coordinate the first-year buddy program.
  • Organize student panel milestone meetings in the spring semester.
  • Eligibility: 4th year +
PPD&E icon-olus-circle
  • Serve as the student representative on the faculty PPD&E committee, which reviews curriculum and program plans for undergraduate and graduate courses.
  • Eligibility: 3rd year +
Faculty Meeting Reps icon-olus-circle
  • Attend faculty meetings (once per month).
  • Act as liaison between faculty and graduate students, reporting to both about the other on pertinent issues that affect students.
  • Eligibility: 3rd year +
Alumni icon-olus-circle
  • Coordinate with HDFS alumni to keep them involved and plan events that can incorporate their wisdom.
  • Eligibility: 3rd year +
GPSA Reps icon-olus-circle
  • Attend GPSA meetings as the HDFS representative and report back any pertinent info from the larger PSU graduate school.
  • Eligibility: 2nd year +
Dean's Council icon-olus-circle
  • Attend HHD and Nursing Graduate Student Council (once per month): generally discussing college level social events or resources that can be offered to grad students (e.g. launching grant proposal this year). 
  • Attend Executive Council (meeting with college dean and department heads in HHD) once per semester: make notes and share things that may affect grad students.
  • Communicate with students in other departments in HHD.
  • NEW for 2021: this role is expanding to two students.
  • Eligibility: 3rd year +
Professional Development Brownbag icon-olus-circle
  • Survey students around professional development needs and set up brown bag events roughly every month (or bi-monthly). 
  • NEW for 2021: this role is expanding to two students.
  • Eligibility: 3rd year +
Diversity Committee Reps icon-olus-circle
  • Serve as the student representative on the faculty diversity committee, which aims to increase awareness of issues of diversity and inclusion and to incorporate these issues into existing programs and processes.
  • NEW for 2021: Update diversity, inclusion, and equity resource document each semester (will be handed down by previous chairs).
  • All students eligible.
Community Service Chairs icon-olus-circle
  • Plan and organize community service events, typically including the United Way Day of Caring (fall) and Staff Appreciation Breakfast (spring).
  • All students eligible.
Social Chairs icon-olus-circle
  • Plan and organize social events, including visiting weekend party, first-year party, Halloween, etc.
  • All students eligible.
Newsletter icon-olus-circle
  • Design at least one newsletter per semester (e.g. fall & winter) for the HDFS department.
  • Create surveys to send out to the department, interview new students and faculty members, etc.
  • Eligibility: 2nd year +
International Student Support Committee icon-olus-circle
  • Create resource lists for incoming international students, such as FAQs and a checklist for items to be completed before moving to State College.
  • Work with student advisor chair to organize an international student panel during new student orientation; similarly, a panel can be organized during prospective student weekend by working with Admissions Committee.
  • Compile resources for current students, such as fellowships and scholarships that take international applicants, tips for navigating job market (consider working with PDBB chair to organize a session).
  • Attend a session of HDFS 590 for the first year students to introduce yourselves.
  • Eligibility: 2nd year +