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Graduate Peers' Schedules

Winter 2016
Peer Advisor Availability

Writing Peer
Kyle Crocco

Mon: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Tue: 10 a.m.-noon
Wed: 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Thu: 10 a.m.-noon

Funding Peer
Stephanie Griffin
Mon: 10 a.m.-noon
Wed: noon-2 p.m.

Diversity Peer
Ana Romero

Mon: noon-2 p.m.
Wed: 11 a.m.-1 p.m.

The peers sometimes hold events or attend meetings during their regular office hours. To assure you connect with your Graduate Peer Advisor, we encourage you to contact them by email and make an appointment.


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Entries in torrey trust (3)


Grad Slam Round 3 Recap: Solar Cells, Exploding Brains, and More 

Grad Slam Preliminary Round 3 winner Torrey Trust. Credit: Patricia MarroquinRound 3 of the Grad Slam, held in the MCC Theater on Monday, featured fascinating research from our exceptional graduate students, ranging from molecules and hairy monsters to graffiti and exploding brains.

The nine presentations for the three-minute talk were judged on three criteria: clear and compelling presentations; impact on an academic field or on society; and how well they are geared for general audiences. Any contestants who exceeded the three-minute limit were penalized, though that wasn’t a problem with this talented group as they all held their talks within the time limit.

Niva Ran from Chemistry & Biochemistry spoke about organic solar cells for green energy. Joseph Brooks of Linguistics discussed his research on three languages in Papua New Guinea. Next we heard from Sarah Abdul-Wajid of Molecular, Cellular, and Developmental Biology whose research on the marine sea squirt has implications for the “exploding brain” defect.  Things got a little hairy after that, when David Baillargeon of History talked about some hairy families in Britain’s Empire. Materials grad student ChelseaHistory grad student David Baillargeon discusses "The Hairy Business of Britain's Empire." Credit: Patricia Marroquin Catania spoke of biology’s power in harnessing microorganisms for energy. Samantha Chang of History of Art and Architecture broke out the spray paint for her presentation on graffiti art and archives in Germany. Physics student David Jacobson spoke about folding biomolecules, and Anand Shukla of Economics addressed racial animus and labor market outcomes. Finally, Education grad student Torrey Trust described her research collecting, organizing, and categorizing more than 2,500 open educational resources in the K-12 Tech Tools Database, a website designed to help teachers instantly access high-quality online resources that meet their students' learning objectives.

After all the presentations were made, guests stepped out for refreshments and socializing in the lobby. Then the judges’ decisions were announced: The top three contestants were Sarah Abdul-Wajid, Anand Shukla, and Torrey Trust, who each won $50 gift cards to the bookstore. The Round 3 winner advancing to the final round is Torrey. She’ll join Bob Lansdorp of Materials and Jasmin Llamas of Counseling, Clinical, and School Psychology, as well as the other finalists, for the Grad Slam Finals on Friday, April 19. See the full Grad Slam schedule for other events this week.

Grad Slam Round 3 guests socialized in the lobby while the judges deliberated. Credit: Patricia Marroquin


Graduate Student in the Spotlight: Torrey Trust

In workshops she has conducted, UCSB Education Ph.D. student Torrey Trust talks about the importance of a stellar online presence, or “digital reputation.” Do a “vanity search” of your name, she advises, and see what shows up. If you don’t like what you find, it’s time to clean up that reputation, and in her seminars, Torrey tells you how to do that. But she says there are some things that simply cannot be erased from your digital profile, such as when you’re involved in a world news event. Torrey was thrust into such a situation in 2007.

If you Google “Torrey Trust,” on the first page of the results you’ll find this UC San Diego headline: “Newlywed Alums Aboard Ship That Sinks in Antarctica.” Yes, that was Torrey, who was on a honeymoon cruise with her husband Trevor Takayama when their ship hit an iceberg in the Antarctic. They huddled in a lifeboat in frigid waters for more than four hours before help arrived. Once on dry land in Chile, they were interviewed about their ordeal by Diane Sawyer on “Good Morning America.”

Although Torrey hasn’t made the world news since then, her other activities and accomplishments are no less noteworthy. Among her many talents, Torrey is a surfer, a soccer player, a photographer, a blogger, an author, an environmentalist, and a teacher.

Torrey took some time for an interview with the GradPost. She shares what it’s like to have your father as your teacher; how she came to establish an eco-friendly surfing school; why she wants a particular T-shirt after she earns her Ph.D.; her advice for grad students; and why she’ll never own an ice cream shop.

Diane Sawyer of "Good Morning America" interviews Trevor Takayama and Torrey Trust in 2007.

Since we’re no “Good Morning America,” we can’t promise Torrey this post will land on Page One of a “Torrey Trust” Google search. But it is possible that if we get enough clicks, it could find its way to the front page. To make that a reality, read on and share this with your friends. …

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Graduate Peers Are Here for You

The graduate peers are here to help you successfully navigate graduate student life at UCSB.

Drop by the Graduate Student Resource Center (1st Floor of the Student Resource Building) to meet with the peers during office hours (spring schedule). If the hours on the schedule do not work for you, contact the peers directly to set up a meeting that fits your schedule.

Here is a list of the graduate peers, their specialties, and contact information:


Courtney Gosnell

Title: Funding Peer


Specialties: Finding funding, Funding search tools, Fellowship Proposal Library (Application Samples), Department Specific Funding Opportunities and Presentations, Post-Doc Preparations


Mario Galicia

Title: Diversity Peer


Specialties: Around Campus/Town, School/Work-Life Balance, Intra- and Extra-Mural Research Opportunities, Graduate School Application Preparation and Strategy, Career Planning and Strategy, Research, Family Student Life & Resources (Campus and Extended Community)


Torrey Trust

Title: Academic Peer


Specialties: Academics, Networking, Wellness, Technology (designing presentations, using social media to find jobs, building personal learning networks, teaching with technology, Web 2.0 tools, search strategies)


We look forward to helping you excel at UCSB.