GRADvantage Week


The sessions were very helpful, especially at the beginning of my graduate student journey. The introduction to tools, available resources and where and how to find them, and helpful strategies were all things any graduate student, especially those in their first year, would benefit from. I am enrolled in a research methodologies course this semester and I readily applied what I learned during GRADvantage to my coursework. I strongly recommend the GRADvantage Week sessions!

– Xiaochuan, 1st Year Master of Applied Disability Studies Student

Every session I attended provided such valuable learning. They were all informative, practical, and timely! The format enabled me to connect with other graduate students and begin building a network of peers. I cannot speak highly enough of this experience. If you missed it this time, make sure you put it on your calendar for next year. You won’t regret it!

– Delane, 1st Year Master of Education Student


All graduate students were invited to take part in GRADvantage Week – a week of workshops designed to help them be successful in graduate school.

All sessions relate to one of four sections in our GRADvantage Development Guide, a model created especially for graduate students at Brock. The GRADvantage Guide helps students develop key transferable skills that will help them be successful in graduate school, and prepare them for the next step in their journey.

GRADvantage Week is an annual event for graduate students offered by the Faculty of Graduate Studies every fall. Students have the opportunity to participate in a variety of sessions designed to help support them on their academic and professional development journeys. We welcome graduate students to view this year’s sessions and watch the recordings on our Resources for Current Students page *only available to graduate students.

Monday, October 4

Building a Growth Mindset for Graduate Students
Facilitated By: Suzanne M. Zook-Johnston, Personal Counselling Services

Monday, October 4
10 – 10:45 a.m.

In this workshop session, you can expect to: 

  • Learn how to build a Growth Mindset 
  • Develop skills and strategies to improve wellbeing, increase fulfillment, and enhance academic performance 
  • Understand how to overcome Fixed Mindset patterns specific to graduate students, such as Academic Perfectionism and Imposter Syndrome 
  • Create a plan for coping and managing life stressors that can interfere with your graduate studies 

managing stress and strong emotions during graduate school
Facilitated By: suzanne m. zook-johnston, personal counselling services

Monday, October 4
1 – 1:45 p.m.

Stress and strong emotions are a normal part of the human experience and are expected during graduate school. However, if not managed properly, they can negatively impact our overall health and wellbeing. In this interactive workshop, students will learn tools to manage high levels of stress and overwhelming emotions, as well as strategies to regulate emotions and tolerate distress.

build your own writing community
Facilitated By: sarah miller, a-z Learning services

Monday, October 4
2 – 3:30 p.m.

Writing doesn’t need to be a solitary endeavor. In fact, research tells us that writing circles/groups/communities provide many benefits to writers across the disciplines. In this workshop we will discuss “best practices” for creating a meaningful and lasting writing community and provide time to network and begin the process. 

Tuesday, October 5

show me the money: Professional development for funding applications
Facilitated By: allison flynn-bowman, faculty of graduate studies

Tuesday, October 5
10 – 11:00 a.m.

This session is for anyone considering applying for funding – scholarships, awards, grants, or other sources of funding. Come learn what you can do to make yourself a highly qualified applicant for these opportunities! We will explore the features that funders look for in an applicant (hint: things like leadership skills are important). Learn tips and tricks and things you can start doing now, before you apply, to improve your chances of success. Information on funding opportunities will also be shared along with instructions for applying and links to helpful resources. 

Wednesday, October 6

let’s talk supervisors
Facilitated By: dr. suzanne curtin, Vice-Provost & DEan, Faculty of Graduate Studies

wednesday, October 6
10 – 11:30 a.m.

What and who is a graduate supervisor and what can you expect from yours? In this workshop session, we will explore the realities of the student-supervisor relationship and discuss how you can make the most of this important learning and development opportunity. We’ll cover roles and responsibilities, managing expectations, navigating challenges, and getting the support you need. 

library research essentials: graduate edition
Facilitated By: chelsea humphries, justine cotton & ian gordon, Brock Library

wednesday, October 6
1 – 2:00 p.m.

As a graduate student, you may have a lot of questions about conducting research and sharing your findings in your classes – maybe even as a TA or lecturer. The library is here to help! In this session, you’ll learn:  

  • the ins and outs of library services, spaces, and resources that are curated just for you as a graduate student and your many roles 
  • how to develop a successful literature search strategy and find the perfect scholarly content to support your research  
  • where to find other students’ theses
  • how to get help with citation management, data management, and more!  

 Please bring your questions! 

where did i read that? creating a reference matrix
Facilitated By: sarah miller, A-z Learning SERVICES

wednesday, October 6
2 – 3:30 p.m.

Handling the volume of reading and research required in most graduate programs can feel daunting. It’s easy to lose track and putting together the all-important literature review can feel like attempting the world’s trickiest jigsaw puzzle. In this workshop, you will create an individualized reference matrix to help you organize your research and simplify the literature review process. 

Thursday, October 7

conceptualizing your graduate degree
Facilitated By: kara renaud, career education

thursday, October 7
9 – 10:30 a.m.

Skills are the language of employers – you’ll see them in job descriptions, you’ll write about them in your applications, and you’ll talk about them in interviews. Writing and talking about skills we’ve gained through our experiences can help us communicate our qualifications and why we’d be a great fit for employment opportunities. This interactive session will help you unpack the skills you’re developing during your graduate degree and how to position these skills for potential employers.

let’s have a career conversation
Facilitated By: marisa brown, Co-op, career & Experiential education

thursday, October 7
1 – 2:00 p.m.

Amazing career support is just one of the many benefits of being a graduate student at Brock University. From 1:1 appointments to career events, the services the Co-op, Career & Experiential Education team offer to graduate students are truly invaluable. Come learn about how Co-op, Career & Experiential Education (CCEE) at Brock can work with you on your career exploration and job search.

write it down! a research and writing journal
Facilitated By: sarah miller, A-Z Learning Services

thursday, October 7
2 – 3:30 p.m.

There are many twists and turns during the research process and it’s often the unexpected twists and turns that reveal important insights and conclusions. Make sure you can take advantage of the unexpected by tracking and journaling about your process. In this workshop, we will review the benefits of keeping a research journal and you will create an individualized journaling template to experiment with. 

Tuesday, October 19

how to two row: advice from an indigenous auntie
Facilitated By: dr. robyn bourgeois, Acting Vice-Provost, Indigenous Engagement

Tuesday, October 19
1 – 2:30 p.m.

This session will provide an opportunity for grad students to explore everything they wanted to know about Indigenous peoples but were afraid to ask, and how to be respectful treaty partners with Canada’s Indigenous peoples. Led by your Indigenous “auntie” Dr. Robyn Bourgeois, Acting Vice Provost, Indigenous Engagement, this session will provide a safer space to discuss these topics.