In addition to participating in course work and counseling rotations, students in the department also participate in a number of community and education programs. Students are encouraged to present educational talks to parent groups, teachers and area schools regarding various topics and issues.
Graduate students assist the faculty with teaching responsibilities in a number of ways including presenting genetics recitation materials to the first-year medical and dental students and lecturing, as appropriate, in other courses. In general, students will be responsible for at least 10 teaching units and are strongly encouraged to do more as this experience is excellent preparation for later job-related teaching.
Most students in the department are members of the American Society of Human Genetics, American College of Medical Genetics or the National Society of Genetic Counselors and receive the Society Journal. Student membership to ASHG may require sponsorship by a member in good standing, proof of enrollment in graduate school and a fee, which includes an initiation fee and a one year subscription to the Society Journal. ASHG has annual meetings, at which poster and oral presentations of significant, current research in human genetics are given, and ASHG policy on current issues is determined. NSGC has annual meetings. All 2nd year GC students are encouraged to attend the NSGC meeting. In most circumstances, the student stipend my be used to assist with registration and travel.
The human genetics faculty holds bimonthly meetings to discuss a variety of departmental business. The graduate students elect a student representative, generally for a six-month term, to attend these meetings and present the students’ issues and views. Student meetings also are held to discuss student business and to review the topics covered at the faculty meeting.
Announcements for upcoming student meetings are posted. The student representative serves as the voice for all students to the faculty and can often provide answers to questions about procedures that need to be followed, deadlines, student services, etc. Each student is encouraged to attend student meetings and to talk with faculty members when assistance is needed.