About Graduate Studies

The Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs is dedicated to creating a University-wide focus on graduate education and postdoctoral training by establishing good communication and working relationships with graduate schools, departments, and graduate students. We collaborate on efforts to develop intellectually-stimulating environments for research, teaching, and service and to recruit, mentor, retain, and graduate a talented and diverse community of graduate students and postdoctoral fellows and research associates. We believe successful graduate and postdoctoral experiences rely on high-quality faculty, competitive financial support, and opportunities for professional and career development.

This office performs a number of interrelated tasks to enhance the experiences of graduate students and postdoctoral fellows and research associates, including reviewing policies concerning graduate students or those with postdoctoral appointments; recommending changes to improve and enhance the graduate and postdoctoral experience; and serving as a single office to act as a clearinghouse for information and assistance. For postdoctoral fellows and research associates, it facilitates and acts as a liaison with the appropriate University offices. The office also provides assistance in dealing with post-doctoral administrative issues such as compensation, health insurance and benefits, visa and residency requirements, employment duration, professional development, research funding sources, and grievance resolution.

Diversity Programs works to identify, recruit, retain, mentor, and graduate a diverse graduate student body. In collaboration with other departments, schools, and organizations at the University, Graduate Student Diversity Programs provides services, resources, and guidance to establish a welcoming and supportive environment for an increasingly diverse graduate student population.

Graduate Career Services provides direct career services tailored to the needs of Master's student, PhD students, and postdoctoral researchers at the University of Virginia. These services supplement the career planning and professional development programs offered by academic departments and other support services on Grounds. Our function includes streamlining resources, keeping abreast of current trends, and collaborating with faculty, employers, and professionals in higher education and in other sectors of the economy.

 

Staff

Phillip Trella

434-243-2018

Phillip Trella is Assistant Vice President for Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs. With a PhD in anthropological archaeology, his research interests include ancient food production systems, the disintegration of complex societies, and long-term environmental change.  Before joining the VPR staff he held a postdoc position with the Sciences Humanities and Arts Network for Technological Initiatives (SHANTI) where he worked to advance digital scholarship among faculty and graduate students at UVa.

Beth Beal

434-243-4014

Beth Beal serves as Programs Administrator for the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs. With more than thirty years in the field of finance and administration Beth has experience with strategic planning, accounting, research and analysis, fiscal auditing, resource development, event planning, budget development and management, business administration, program development and management, donor relations, website development, and higher education administration.

Keisha John

(434) 243-5482

Keisha John is Director of Diversity Programs. In this role she collaborates with various university offices to lead and coordinate university-wide activities designed to recruit, mentor and foster success among a diverse body of graduate and professional students, as well as postdoctoral scholars. Prior to coming to UVa she was the Assistant Dean and Director of the Office of Graduate Funding and Awards as well as the Director of the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs at Florida State University. She earned her Ph.D. from The Watson School of Biological Sciences at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and completed a postdoctoral appointment at Rockefeller University.

Russ Rivers

434-243-0807

Russ Rivers provides program and fiscal support for the Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs.