The steering committee is the principal governing body of the Neuroscience
Graduate Program. The composition of this committee includes the
heads of the major committees, the course masters for the core graduate
courses,. Principal Investigators of Neuroscience Training Grants
and three members elected by the faculty of the Neuroscience Program
The terms of the three elected members shall be for three years.
Presently, this membership is as follows:
(1) Current Director of Graduate Studies (DGS)
(2) Former DGS's
(3) Chair of Faculty Status Committee
(4) Chair of Curriculum Committee
(5) Chair of Seminar Committee
(6) Chair of Admissions Committee
(7) Course Director, Itasca
(8) Course Director, System Neuroscience Course
(9) Course Director, Cell and Molecular Neuroscience
(10) Course Director, Developmental Biology
(11) Course Director for Behavioral Neuroscience
(12) Course Director, Career Skills and Understanding Responsibilities
as a Neuroscientist
(13) PI's on NIDA, IGERT and Eye Institute Training Grants
(14) 3 Elected Representatives
(15) 2 Student Representative
The election of the DGS takes place one year prior to the expiration
of the DGS' term. Upon election, the DGS-elect becomes a member
of the steering committee. The Steering Committee meets on a regular
basis, under the guidance of the DGS, to consider the evolving issues
of program development. The Senior Administrator of the program
serves as the secretary of the Steering Committee. The decisions
of the Steering Committee are binding and do not require approval
by the general faculty membership.
The Steering Committee has two major functions. One is to approve
all rules and changes in regulations initiated by the Director of
Graduate Studies. Approval by the Steering Committee is also required
for course/curriculum changes as proposed by the curriculum committee.
Approval of any initiative considered by the Steering Committee,
including changes in the bylaws, requires a majority vote of the
attending steering committee membership, provided that a 2/3 majority
of the committee is in attendance at the time. If an insufficient
number of members are in attendance for any deliberation, all absentee
members can be polled by the secretary to determine their position
on the issues at hand. A second function of the steering committee is to meet in the each
term to evaluate the progress of each student and make recommendations,
if necessary, to help facilitate student progress in a timely, orderly
manner and to assist students in promoting career decisions.
Members of the program committees will be appointed to 4 year,
renewable terms. Nominations for membership will be solicited whenever
a vacancy arises. Criteria for appointment to a program committee
include: service to the Graduate Program, distinction in research
and graduate training, and the need for diversity in faculty representation.
Admissions and Recruitment Committee.
This committee oversees the application and admissions process for
bringing new students into the Neuroscience Graduate Program. These
responsibilities include the evaluation of applicants, communication
with prospective students and applicants, and their recruitment
into the program. A major component of this process is to plan and
execute the campus visits for each prospective student, to facilitate
Awards and Fellowships Committee.
This committee oversees the allocation of currently existing award
prizes, travel funds or other symbols of recognition of merit bestowed
by the Graduate Program in Neuroscience as a whole. This includes
soliciting nominees, selecting winners from among the nominees,
and arranging for the formal conferring of the awards, and exploring
possibilities of funding awards with outside organizations.
This committee oversees the educational composition of the Neuroscience
Graduate Program. These functions include the programmatic features
of graduate education in the Neurosciences, which include courses,
seminars, and other components of the educational process, such
as lab rotations. Recommendations from the Curriculum Committee
are passed to the Steering Committee, where final decisions on programmatic
changes are determined.
Faculty Status Committee.
This committee evaluates applications for membership in the Neuroscience
Graduate Program and makes recommendations to the Neuroscience Faculty,
whose majority vote determines membership in the program. The Faculty
Status Committee also evaluates continued participation in the program
for those members whose terms are scheduled for expiration.
This committee is responsible for coordinating and organizing seminars
to enhance the Graduate Program in Neuroscience. The functions of
this committee will include a determination of invited guest speakers
from outside the University, based on recommendations polled from
the membership of the Graduate Faculty. In addition, seminars internal
to the program (Neuroscience Colloquium) and special events, such
as the Neuroscience Grass Lecture Series, will be organized by the
Community Outreach Committee.
This committee is charged with overseeing and developing community
outreach activities, such as those associated with Brain Awareness
Week, exhibits at the State Fair, etc. The function of this committee
is to enhance the visibility of neuroscience and the graduate program
within the community, to foster a better understanding of neuroscience
and to encourage K-12 students to consider higher education in science.