Doctoral Programs at UC Irvine

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Doctoral Programs at UC Irvine

I got the opportunity to fly on a NASA airborne project. We had the amazing opportunity to basically fly around the world and collect air samples. This is something really special. Something not everyone gets to do. Our goal for doctoral enrollment at UCI is to grow by thirty-five percent by 2022. A doctorate is an ultimate challenge. You have to find something in your research That no one has ever found before. So it’s a spirit of discovery. My thesis work is on methane, ethane emissions
from the South Coast Air Basin. We’re looking at where natural gas is coming from. My research tries to understand why some communities will have higher crime rates than others over time. My dissertation looks at how college students engage with Facebook in their personal learning environments. In my dissertation I look at skin color difference between siblings and how that impacts their outcomes in the criminal justice system, the educational system and in the labor market. The traditional model for a doctoral student is actually of an apprentice and it comes from medieval times in which you had the master who is
the faculty member, the professor who teaches the apprentice their craft. That’s still very important that we have faculty work closely with doctoral students but that we provide other skills such as communication, mentorship, leadership even teaching. One thing that UCI is great about is focusing on professional development and making sure that graduate students not only learn how to do research, but also
that they’re well-rounded as people. When I first started graduate school one thing that I really try to focus on
was public speaking skills because it is so difficult. You stand up there and you’re like, “This is me, this is who I am
and this is what I’m studying” and I found that really daunting and so one thing I did was I took a public speaking class through the drama department. Learning all these different
strategies was extremely helpful. Doctoral students are critical
in that they are the interface between undergraduates and faculty. They do research. Often helping faculty do their research. The doctoral students are also very important as teachers and mentors for
the undergraduate students. They are the glue of the campus. The students come to appreciate the help they can get. They can come seek me out, you know one-on-one attention. UC Irvine is attractive for many reasons. We have some really good faculty. Some great research programs. Those are the things that doctoral
students are usually attracted to. We guarantee housing for our doctoral students. Almost all of our programs guarantee
five years of financial support. It’s very important that they know that they will be supported. For me something that’s been very satisfying is seeing my research being published in quality journals. Nothing feels better than you see through an idea, into data, into writing into the completion of project that really makes you satisfied and fulfilled.

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