December 19, 2018

2018 Graduate Student Survey

This year we repeated our annual survey in which we asked our graduate students about their interests, perspectives and how to improve our educational activities. Below we show the responses to selected questions.

Question 2. How confident are you in the following knowledge areas?

Question 4. How confident do you feel in the following skill sets?

Question 21. How can we improve the WheatCAP education program?

Student Responses:

  1. I cannot think of any ways that it needs to be improved.
  2. Maybe a video recordings of any training sessions going on and uploaded to our Google Drive. For students who can’t attend the workshop if they are in field or occupied with time sensitive work. So students can re watch the lecture and follow along with the material uploaded. This time material was uploaded….but I would appreciate a recorded video lecture as well in the future.
  3. You guys are doing great. I have only recently really began to appreciate the insane amount of training and opportunities you are giving us that most other grad students never had. In addition, but maybe even more importantly, you have made it possible for us to make connections with the other WCAP labs across the US. It has allowed me generate multiple professional relationships much more rapidly and in greater number than before (seriously, I have been given access to equipment and technology that I probably wouldn’t have found out about for a few years). These meetings and professional interactions have rapidly brought me up to speed on what is going on in the wheat community outside my laboratory, providing exposure to concepts that would have taken much longer for me to encounter. But since I have to fill out this section, I will say that it is sometimes hard to keep track of all the.
  4. Maybe help us to have more vision about our possible future career.
  5. Keep online meetings succinct and focused. At times in the past year our meetings and lessons have gone off on tangents that have caused the events to go longer than expected.
  6. I want to learn more about the wheat market classes, industry, and economics in the US and abroad.
  7. Categorizing training students based on their current knowledge rather than keeping them together.
  8. The workshops had been great and informative this year. But if the timing can be a bit spread out that may help with the attendance.
  9. Group discussion
  10. Smaller groups work better for Zoom meetings.
  11. WheatCap is designed very effectively if all the planned activities will be met. I think more interaction with the industry personal and teaching and making aware of new tools and learning techniques will help better.
  12. Maybe have a place that we can post relevant papers or a part of the zoom sessions that we can ask troubleshooting questions.
  13. Connect WheatCAP students with funding opportunities that they could apply for to increase individual students research budget and practice grant writing.
  14. Can we record the lecture video?
  15. More new technology.
  16. I prefer in person learning workshops and education programs to online programs. I know that students complain about their schedules and organizing time away from research, but perhaps a letter from George and support from PIs indicating that the education is a major portion of this grant and finding time to spend away from our home institutions is OK. Our PIs travel quite often, clearly travel is a part of plant breeding and professional life- we might need to get used to it!! I also really have enjoyed working with Loriana and Bonsai Consulting. I hope that her professional opinion and “workshops” will continue, or be revisited when we are closer to the job market.
  17. I think everything is great the way it is, but I have only participated in it for a little while.
  18. Coming from a genotyping lab which doesn’t develop varieties, it would be nice to get more experience with traditional plant breeding experimental design, phenotypic selection, etc.