Office of the Provost

September 4, 2020

Dear Graduate and Professional Students,

I’m pleased to introduce myself as the new Vice Provost for Graduate Studies, and I am looking forward to getting to know you and to making your Pitt experience as positive and productive as it can be.

My background is in educational research and my academic home is the Department of Teaching, Learning and Leading in the School of Education. In much of my research I have focused on the perspectives of students, so being in a position to advocate for you builds upon my core values and experiences as a researcher, mentor and teacher.

In addition to being a faculty member in the School of Education, I hold appointments in the Department of Linguistics and the Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies Program. I am also associated with the Center for Urban Education and the Learning Research and Development Center and collaborate with faculty from the Department of Computer Science in my current research projects. I include these details to share that, in my 18 years at the University, I have gotten to know disciplines and programs across its many schools. I look forward, too, to becoming more involved in the diverse range of graduate, professional and postdoc experiences at Pitt.

I hope to meet with many of you in the upcoming months to hear about your experiences, concerns, and ideas for making graduate programs and postdoc experiences even better. I hold office hours once a month (date, time and Zoom link noted below) and I am always available at

I want to end by acknowledging that the past few months have been particularly challenging for many of us because of the COVID pandemic, violent and upsetting instances of racism particularly against Black Americans, and unclear federal policies for international students. As Vice Provost for Graduate Studies, it is my goal to be sure that you are healthy and safe; supported in your academic and professional growth; and learning in an environment that values diversity, equity and anti-racism. I know that it will take work and some changes to make all those things happen for everyone, but I am committed to the task and to you.

My team has created a special webpage with resources for graduate and professional students and postdocs during the COVID-19 pandemic, The website is updated frequently. We also encourage you follow us on Twitter and share your accomplishments and honors by tagging us at @PittGradStudies.

University-wide News

The “Power of Pitt” website: is the University’s main website for COVID-19 related news and policies.

Higher Education & Anti-Racism (H.E.A.R.) Initiative: Call for Applications due by September 15, 2020: Are you interested in publishing? Are you interested in anti-racism research? If you answered yes to both of these questions, then we invite you to join the Higher Education & Anti-Racism Initiative led by Pitt’s Center for Urban Education and the PittEd Justice Collective. Submit your application.

Insurance Enrollment for academic year September 1, 2020-August 31, 2021 is currently open until September 30, 2020:  All graduate and professional students and their dependents are eligible for student health coverage through the University of Pittsburgh. View the available plans and instructions to enroll. For questions, call the Benefits Department Customer Service team at 412-624-8160 Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. EST or submit an online request.

Pitt Turbovote – Eligible student voters and those educating themselves about the election process are encouraged to consult the nonpartisan website This site provides Pitt students and other members of the community with information about when elections are happening and the information they need to vote. The site also provides election reminders, voter registration, applications for absentee ballots, and more.

Free 30-Minute Rides on a Healthy Ride Bike Are Now Available: View an information session about this new program. All eligible riders should have received their access code via email from Pittwire. For questions, email Pitt Sustainability or visit the Healthy Ride webpage.

Parking: Non-permit holders can park on campus at several lots including the O'Hara Parking Garage, Soldiers & Sailors Parking Garage (view these on a campus map), and others at a daily rate of $5.00 payable through the ParkMobile App.

Study Spaces: On-campus study spaces and Hillman Library are open for students looking for a quiet place to study.

Religious Observances and Social Justice Activity: The Provost released an announcement on September 1, 2020 offering guidance throughout the Academic Year.

Office of the Provost – Graduate Studies

Ombudspersons are Available to Assist Graduate Students and Postdocs with resolving conflicts and issues arising in the course of their education and training that they believe have not or cannot be addressed within their academic department. Learn who your school ombudsperson is and what they can and cannot do. Learn more by viewing a video recording of An Introduction to School Ombudsperson, Graduate Policies, and Points of Contact.

Parenting Resource Panels for Grads and Postdocs are being planned for late September. Please refer to the Graduate Student Events page for updates.

Graduate and Professional Student Activities Fair
The Office of the Provost – Graduate Studies and the Student Organization Resource Center (SORC) are excited to host the first-ever virtual Graduate and Professional Activities Fair. This program is designed to assist graduate and professional students in getting connected to student organizations. The fair will be held on Monday, September 21 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Information to access the fair can be found at

Google PhD Fellowships are due September 8, 2020. If you are interested in submitting an application, reach out to your school’s graduate associate dean. More information can be found at:

Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s 2021 Gilliam Fellowships for Advanced Study are due September 8, 2020. If you are interested in submitting an application, reach out to your school’s graduate associate dean. More information can be found at:

AERA Minority Dissertation Fellowship Program in Education Research is due November 16, 2020. More information can be found at:

Graduate and Professional Student Government

GPSG would like to welcome all new and returning graduate and professional students to Pitt!

GPSG connects students to Pitt administrators through graduate student representation on many University committees and administers half of the graduate student activity fee to provide services and event programming to all graduate and professional students.

This year GPSG is dedicated to providing COVID-19 support, support for diversity and inclusion initiatives, and virtual professional development opportunities. For up-to-date information and resources on COVID-19 tailored to the graduate student experience, visit our website, where you can also submit an anonymous question or comment.

Get to know the executive board and what’s new with GPSG by following us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn.

Upcoming GPSG Events:

9/15, 4:30-6 p.m.: September Assembly Board Meeting: All graduate and professional students are welcome to attend and participate. The Zoom link and passcode can be found here.

9/18, Time TBD: Virtual Trivia Night Welcome Event: To welcome new and returning graduate and professional students, GPSG will be hosting a virtual trivia night via Zoom! More details, including Zoom link and passcode, will be shared in the days to come. We hope to virtually see you there!

Office Hours

My next monthly office hour is on Tuesday, September 8, 2020, from 4 to 5 p.m. EST. Please complete the registration form to choose your time slot. Zoom details will be emailed to you after completing the form. I welcome the opportunity to answer questions and discuss graduate studies at Pitt.


Amanda J. Godley
Vice Provost for Graduate Studies

Graduate Resources
Graduate News, Policies, and Events