"Peers supporting peers with grad school life."
Grad school at Berkeley is an amazing opportunity - both thrilling and daunting. Sometimes its struggles can also be exhausting. It is easy to be overwhelmed by coursework, research, and exams. Add advisor problems, homesickness, or challenges with family to the mix, and things can get pretty stressful. A lot of us at one time or another wonder how we got into Berkeley in the first place, how others around us can be so on top of things.
Although many of us have a tendency to believe we are the only ones experiencing what we are going through, the fact is that we all go through our own grad school roller coaster, and it can be liberating to share worries or feelings with someone else.
EECS Peers is here to talk about everything from really tough issues to more regular challenges that you may face as a grad student. We're happy to talk to you about whatever's on your mind. Here are some examples:
- I'm not sure I have the right advisor.
- I want to learn about xyz subject, but I don't know anyone in that area.
- I could use some time management tips and tricks.
- I'm thinking of changing areas.
- I don't like my research project and I don't know what to do.
- I'm having trouble balancing school and personal life.
- I'm overwhelmed.
- I'd just like to talk to someone!
EECS Peers aims to provide a private, independent, open-minded, and supportive ear for any of these situations and to serve as a resource to other students who are navigating issues with classes, advisors, exams, stress, and conflict. Where needed we help you find the resources you need to succeed in any given situation. In addition, our team members promote an inclusive and supportive work climate at EECS through various initiatives co-organized with staff, professors and other student organizations.Particularly, if you have a problem that's hard to address with others around you, we're happy to talk! You can reach out to any of the peers below via:
- Email: You can send a regular old email, or you should feel free to make a throwaway account to talk to us anonymously.
- Office Hours: We hold office hours once a week. Look for the announcements Mondays through the eecs-grads mailing list.
- In person: All peers have EECS Peers postcards posted at their desks - just drop by!
Not sure who to talk to or have other questions? Ask the the EECS Peers coordinators:
- CS: Catherine Chen (cathychen [at] berkeley.edu)
- EE: Sara Fridovich-Keil (sfk [at] berkeley.edu)
Want to talk to a faculty member instead of a peer? Contact an ombudsman or a member of the grievance council in the department.
For more information and resources on wellness and dealing with stress, see the Be Well at Cal page or the EECS page on "In Times of Stress". Also check out the EECS Resiliency Project. For general tips on getting off to a solid start in grad school, see these Tips and a Frequently Asked Questions, and The National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity, which provides mentoring, tools, and support for researchers, and is free for UC Berkeley graduate students.