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GSA

Academics

Austin

International Students

GSA

What is the GSA?

GSA stands for Graduate Student Association. Since we are located away from the main University of Texas campus at Austin, we have our own branch of the GSA for the marine science institute. The GSA is composed of a president, several vice presidents in charge of various aspects of student life and general members. Every graduate student at UTMSI is a member of the GSA.

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What does the GSA do for you?

GSA serves as several functions. They are a link between the students and the faculty and administration. The body serves as a place where student concerns are heard and acted upon both with the faculty and the administration. They are responsible for the graduate student computer lab, student activities and purchases.

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What type of activities does the GSA do?

The GSA throws two official annual parties for the entire UTMSI community, which are the responsibility of the GSA party chairpersons. There is the annual summer party which usually has a theme. Some of the past themes have been a Toga party, Favorite Childhood Heroes, an Austin Powers party. The second party is a Mardi Gras party complete with mask making, crawfish boil, the King Cake and the crowning of the official Mardi Gras King/Queen. (Mardi Gras). In addition, the GSA sponsors students in various athletic events, among these is the annual Beach to Bay marathon.

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academics

How are graduate students supported?

Graduate students are supported by their advisor either by teaching or researcher assistantships or through fellowships given by the University of Texas and other organizations. In order to accept a graduate student, a faculty member must be able to support them. So, you will receive a paycheck every month while you are obtaining your degree.

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What happens if I am on fellowship?

On a fellowship, you will still get paid every month like a research assistant, but you are responsible for your own health insurance. You cannot use the University's plan and must obtain your own coverage. You must obey any additional terms of your fellowship as well.

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What are the academic requirements for my degree?

You are required to take three core courses in marine science. These are Marine Ecosystem Dynamics, Marine Biogeochemistry and Adaptations to the Marine Environment. In addition, depending on your degree you will need to take 2 or 3 advanced courses in Marine Science and 2 to 3 courses outside the Marine Science Department, usually taken when the student is in Austin. Advance courses in Marine Science are offered mainly in the summer and occasionally during the normal academic year. The advanced courses have a rotating three year schedule. These classes can all be taken over the video link from Austin.

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What is the video link?

While in Austin, you will take certain classes over the video link. This is a way for students in Austin to take course that are taught from down in Port Aransas in real time and vice versa. Core course, advanced courses are taught in a multimedia approach over electronic media in real time.

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Austin

Why do I need to spend time in Austin?

Marine science students are required to take classes outside their department to obtain their degrees. Masters students are required to take 2 classes outside their department, while PhD students need to take 3 classes. In addition, you will take a Supervised Teaching class where they help you to improve your teaching skills.

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Is graduate student housing available in Austin?

There is limited graduate student housing available in Austin, so do not plan on getting student housing from the University of Texas. You'll have to find your own housing in Austin. Housing ranges from $400 - $700 a month for a one bedroom apartment depending on where you live. The best way to find a apartment in Austin is with the help of an apartment locator. Many of these are free and can be found on the web.

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Will I get any teaching experience?

Most students in Austin are required to teach is they are not on fellowship. You will usually teach classes in the marine science area. Students teach between 2 - 4 lab sessions a week per semester. Depending on your advisor, you may teach during the summer session for the class they teach.

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international students

Does The University of Texas provide health insurance for international students?

Yes, if you are employed by the University of Texas as a research assistant or a teaching assistant you have health insurance. If you are on fellowship, you must provide your own health insurance. This applies to both U.S. citizens and international students.

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Are there any special requirements at UTMSI for international students?

There are certain special requirement for international students. Refer to the International Office.