March is a big month for key conferences on campus

Early March will bring three different conferences looking at three very important parts of the University.

Graduate Studies Retreat, March 2

The third annual Graduate Studies Retreat will bring together administrators, faculty and student leaders from 14 of Pitt's graduate and professional schools. The retreat will provide an opportunity to learn about national trends, share resources, understand gaps, and cultivate ideas. 

Guest speakers include:

  • Steve Matson — professor of biology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill who served as dean of The Graduate School at UNC from 2008 to 2019 — will speak on “Connecting Admissions and Student Success: Using Holistic Admissions to Promote Diversity and Inclusion.”

  • Hironao Okahana — higher education researcher, currently working for the Council of Graduate Schools as vice president, research and knowledge development — will speak about “Data-Inspired and Evidence-Based Graduate Education.”

There also will be several breakout sessions hosted by Pitt officials, including Provost Ann Cudd and Nathan Urban, vice provost for graduate studies. The retreat, hosted by the Office of the Provost, runs from 8:30 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. March 2 at the University Club, Ballroom A and B.

Questions can be directed to Stephanie Hoogendoorn. RSVP before the close of business Feb. 24.

Community Engaged Scholarship Forum, March 3

Diana Bucco, president of the Buhl Foundation, will be the keynote speaker at the Community Engaged Scholarship Forum on March 3.

The forum, led by Provost Ann Cudd and Senior Vice Chancellor for Engagement Kathy Humphrey, recognizes the diversity of community-engaged work across the University and this year also will celebrate Pitt’s recent designation with the Carnegie Classification for Community Engagement by the Carnegie Foundation.

The event is from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. March 3 at the William Pitt Union and includes the Senior Vice Chancellor for Engagement’s Partnerships of Distinction Awards Ceremony, recognizing area organizations working with Pitt units.

Breakout sessions throughout the day include everything from “Using Science to Improve Science Communication” to “Building Equitable Community Partnerships to Promote Child Health Equity: Processes & Pathways” and “Getting Engaged: The who, the how and what happens after the honeymoon” and several more.

The day ends with a celebratory reception for the Carnegie Classification from 4:30 to 6 p.m.

Register for the forum and the reception at

A pre-conference workshop on March 2 will focus on community engagement in the curriculum. Participants will:

  • Interact with faculty who have successfully integrated community engagement into their curriculum/classroom.

  • Learn about community engagement opportunities and resources around Pittsburgh.

  • Acquire ideas on collaborative community engagement projects.

Registration is required and seating is limited. The workshop is from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. March 2 at 548 William Pitt Union. Register through the Pitt Events Calendar.

Mentoring and Advising Summit, March 5

This year’s summit — subtitled Inclusive Excellence in Mentoring and Advising — brings together colleagues from Pitt and Carnegie Mellon University.

In the day-long summit at the Cohon University Center at Carnegie Mellon, staff, faculty and administrators will discuss innovative approaches to expanding and enhancing existing structures and processes to better facilitate the mentoring and advising experience for students, advisors, mentors, and coaches. 

The keynote speaker is Becky Martinez, a consultant and trainer with an emphasis on social justice, leadership and organizational change. Her work focuses on engaging individuals and groups to recognize systemic dynamics of privilege and oppression to create more inclusive and equitable policies, practices, and structures.

Find out more information and register at