Graduate and Professional Services Center opens in Sproul Hall

Ethan Epstein/Staff

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Campus officials have announced the opening of the new Graduate and Professional Services Center, or GPS, for graduate and postdoctoral students.

The center, located in 309 Sproul Hall, officially opened Oct. 21. It offers a place for graduate students to develop their research, leadership skills and training within their fields of expertise.

“We like to think about GPS as the hub in the center of a wheel,” said Aaron Smyth, internal vice president of the Graduate Assembly. “The new center will be the bridge that helps students to access the variety of resources on campus.”

Smyth said students have offered positive feedback, saying the center is providing a necessary service. One thing that stood out to students is how the center offers free space that can be used for graduate student instructor training and other workshops.

Smyth said the Graduate Assembly wants to make sure that students are actively giving feedback about whether the services the center is providing are relevant.

The Graduate Assembly commissioned a report last year recommending that UC Berkeley improve professional services for graduate students. At the end of last year, the Berkeley Graduate Division confirmed a commitment to create a new space for graduate students.

“We are not taking the place of the (UC Berkeley) Career Center,” Smyth said, adding that career services are only one component of the center.

The Career Center is one of the many campus services to partner with GPS. Thomas Delvin, director of the Career Center, said it has been providing career services to graduate students for more than a decade and was one of the first career centers in the country to offer comprehensive career services to graduates.

“This new (GPS) model brings together a variety of campus units and services for the benefit of graduate and postdoc students,” Delvin said. “We will continue to collaborate with them to provide the expertise we have.”

Contact Danwei Ma at [email protected].