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On-Campus Employment and Stipend-Supported Students

September 27, 2012

Dear students,

As you may be aware, the Graduate Council is reviewing a policy about how much time students who are supported by stipends can spend in on-campus jobs.  (The 20-hour rule is found in the Graduate School Handbook). We continue to hear many voices on this topic, and I assure you that your input is valued.  

Policies such as the one in question are the purview of the Graduate Council, which is comprised of faculty, graduate students and administrators.  In this case, since the rule has elicited discussion on campus lately, I referred the policy back to the Graduate Council for review and clarification. The review involves complex issues, including questions about student choice, equity and fairness; academic questions such as those relating to learning experiences and time to degree; process questions about what procedures should be followed and who should make decisions; and legal matters such as Federal regulations governing international student visas.

As the Graduate Council is deliberating all these aspects, I write to invite stakeholders to contribute to the conversation. You have multiple ways to express your thoughts on the issue.  If you send an email to graduate_dean@brown.edu, we will furnish comments to the Graduate Council.  You may also speak with me or another dean in the Graduate School. My regular Student Drop-By Hours are on Mondays, from 1 pm to 2 pm. Since I will be traveling on several Mondays during the coming weeks, I have added office hours on October 2 and 18, from 1 pm to 2 pm.  Please contact Nancy Picard if you wish to schedule an appointment with one of the other Graduate School deans. 

Finally, I have encouraged the Graduate Council to reach out to constituencies in order to open direct channels of communication.  Since the Council meets once a month, I anticipate such meetings to come later in the semester.

Thank you for your attention.

With best wishes,

Peter M. Weber
Dean of the Graduate School
Professor of Chemistry
Brown University