Pitt | Swanson Engineering

NOTE: Information about Swanson's Fall 2021 Grad Orientation will be posted shortly, please check back soon for exact details; however, it will occur the week before the Fall semester begins. *University Wide Graduate Orientation will take place on August 25th*

Students must RSVP in order to receive the Zoom links and meeting passwords for Orientation on August 18th.

ZOOM LINK FOR MORNING SESSION (9:00 - 11:30 AM): https://pitt.zoom.us/j/98608655676

Password emailed to those who RSVP'd.

Congratulations! You are going to be a Panther Graduate Student in the Swanson School of Engineering (SSoE)!

Your academic career at the Swanson School of Engineering at The University of Pittsburgh has officially begun. Although your Swanson experience may look a little different than you anticipated, we are excited to watch you succeed here! This year’s Graduate Orientation will be held virtually, where you will learn all you need to know about Pitt, SSoE, and joining our Pitt engineering community. Whether you’ll be joining us on campus or tuning in to class remotely this semester, you are a member of our Pitt Engineering Family and we are here to provide you with all the tools for success!

Tuesday, August 18 - Zoom links below

Swanson’s 2020 Graduate Orientation is set to be held virtually on Tuesday, August 18th. The school-wide orientation will kickoff at 9 AM EST and department breakout sessions will begin as early as 12 PM EST continuing into the afternoon. You can find your department’s agenda at the bottom of this page. If you are only available to attend one of the sessions (school-wide or department-specific), please indicate this in your RSVP. Attending both the school-wide orientation and your department breakout session is highly recommended. The planned agenda is below, some session times may be subject to change:


9AM Start – 9:15AM - Welcome to Pitt Engineering – Becoming a New Grad in the era of COVID – Dr. Robert S. Parker (Associate Dean for Graduate Education)

  • Agenda overview for the day
  • Calibrating Expectations as You Enter Grad Study
  • Dr. Parker's role as the Inaugural Associate Dean - Creating Community and Goals for Moving Forward

9:15AM - 9:30AM  COVID operational plan (Impact on Benedum Hall and Campus) - Dr. Schohn Shannon (Assistant Dean)

9:30AM – 10:15AM  Academic Integrity (Case Study and Discussion) – Dr. Jeffrey Vipperman (Academic Integrity Committee Chair for SsoE and Professor Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science)

10:15AM - 10:30AM  Break – get your coffees, teas, waters and take a moment to process the first hour of info

10:30AM – 11AM  Touch base with Stephanie Opalinski and Cheryl Paul

  • Q&A
  • Who's Who in SSoE
  • Certificates and options for electives
  • Discuss afternoon breakouts
  • Graduate Ombudsperson 
  • Important Resources and Links
  • Community Building Activity

11AM - 11:30AM  OPTIONAL SESSION*Community Building & Pitt/Community Resources: Engineering Graduate Student Organizations at Pitt including: 

  • EGSO: Engineering Graduate Student Organization
  • GWEN: Graduate Women in Engineering Network
  • EDGSA: Engineering Diversity Graduate Student Association

*This session is optional but strongly encouraged. Students should indicate if they would like to attend it in their RSVP. There will be additional opportunities throughout the fall semester to meet and interact with your classmates. 


Department Breakout Sessions

Each Swanson department will be holding individual breakout sessions following the school-wide orientation. Information will include details about curriculum, enrollment, advising, faculty, and more! Virtual information and Zoom links will be provided below-- but students must RSVP to receive the Zoom passwords. See your department’s schedule below.  

Bioengineering's department breakout for PhD and research-track MS students will be held on August 18th from 1:00 - 2:00 PM.
Zoom link: https://pitt.zoom.us/j/94428520242


1:00 pm: Departmental Overview and Program Background with Dr. Gandhi
1:20 pm: Departmental Welcome and Department Funding Philosophy with Dr. Shroff
1:30 pm: BMES President and Student Group Welcome with Reem Azar
1:45 pm: Administrative Questions – General Q and A with Nick Mance

Bioengineering's breakout orientation specifically for MS-MPE students will be held on August 18th from 1:00 - 2:00 PM. 
Zoom link: https://pitt.zoom.us/j/97901603924


1:00 pm: Welcome and Introductions
1:20 pm: Program Overview & Expectations
1:30 pm: Graduate Student Advising
1:35 pm: Co-Curricular Activities and Experience-Based Learning
1:40 pm: Professional Development and Career Management
1:45 pm: Q&A
2:00 - 2:30 pm: Optional Zoom Hangout

Zoom link: https://pitt.zoom.us/j/93485085322


1pm-1:10 pm: Welcome and Intro from ECE Department Chair: Dr. Alan George
1:10-1:20 pm: Student Organizations from an ECE Graduate Student: Alvaro Cardoza
1:20-2 pm: Program Overview from Graduate Coordinator: Dr. Hong Koo Kim

Zoom link: https://pitt.zoom.us/j/91364973856

1:00 pm: Dr. Brian Gleeson MEMS Department Chair: Welcome and Overview of MEMS Graduate Programs 
1:30 pm: Separate Breakout Sessions for ME/MSE:
Dr. Inanc Senocak, ME Graduate Program Director - ME Graduate Program presentation
Dr. Jung-Kun Lee, MSE Graduate Program Director - MSE Graduate Program presentation
2:00 pm: Question and Answer Session - New Students have the opportunity to ask relevant Graduate Program questions

Zoom link: https://pitt.zoom.us/j/92892638972

1:00 pm: Discussing flexibility in curriculum
- Class options outside the department
- Independent study
- Available tracks and the flexibility to create one's own track
1:30 pm: Q&A

Zoom link: https://pitt.zoom.us/j/94581831059


1:00 - 1:05 pm: Welcome by Vice Chair for Graduate Education, Susan Fullerton, and Department Chair, Steve Little

1:05 - 1:15 pm: Faculty and staff introductions

1:15 - 1:25 pm: ChE Graduate Student Association (GSA); Officer introductions and presentation by GSA           President, Evan Miu 

1:25 - 1:30 pm: Graduate Women in Engineering (GWEN); Officer introductions and presentation by Monica Shapiro 

1:30 - 1:55 pm: PhD/MS Student Orientation by Susan Fullerton and Rita Leccia 

1:55 - 2:15 pm: Q&A

Zoom link: https://pitt.zoom.us/j/97705302297

12:15 - 12:45 pm: Introduction to IE department - Dr. Bopaya Bidanda
12:45 - 1:15 pm: Presentation on Graduate Program - Dr. Jayant Rajgopal

Zoom link: https://pitt.zoom.us/j/97792381904


2:30 - 2:35 pm: Welcome and Introduction to the Program Vikas Khanna
2:35 - 2:45 pm: Welcome from the Chair Radisav Vidic
2:45 - 3:00 pm: Introduction of CEE Staff and Faculty 
3:00 - 3:45 pm: Academics and Administration  Vikas Khanna & Amy Kapp
                       -Health Insurance
                       -Degree process – MS and Ph.D.
                       -TA responsibilities and expectations
                       -Registration procedures
3:45 - 4:30 pm: Thoughts from Current Graduate Students  Student Panel 

Other University Events and Resources

Who's Who in SSoE

Swanson Resources for Incoming Graduate Students

Additional Orientation Events

COVID-19 Response Information for Graduate and Professional Students

University-Wide Graduate Resources