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UCLA Graduate Student Resource Center
UCLA Beginnings (Historical Photograph)

History of the Graduate Student Resource Center

The Graduate Student Resource Center (GSRC) was created by the Graduate Students Association (GSA) in 2003 by a vote of the GSA Forum. Space in the Student Activities Center for the GSRC came through the SPARC referendum, which funded the redevelopment of the Men’s Gym into a student services oriented building. In 2004, the Graduate Students Association asked the Division of Student Affairs to take over management of the GSRC. The GSRC opened its doors with a full-time professional staff Director on January 3, 2005. The GSA maintains oversight of the center via the graduate student-majority GSRC Oversight Committee and provides the center with financial support for graduate student printing, the Graduate Student Orientation, and other programmatic activities. The GSRC is primarily funded by Student Services Fees.

In 2007 the GSRC grew to include the Graduate Writing Center (GWC), a Graduate Students Association referendum fee-funded service that offers year-round writing consultation, workshops, and programs to assist graduate students with their academic writing and presentation needs. The GSA fee funds approximately 20-25 graduate student Writing Consultants, a graduate student assistant, and a professional staff person who serves as Director. As of 2014, the GWC also began receiving Student Services Fee funds to support some of the professional development functions of the GWC.

The staff of the GSRC grew in 2011 to include a full-time Assistant Director. The GSRC also has undergraduate front desk staff, and a Program Committee of graduate student staff responsible for creating and managing workshops for graduate and professional students on campus, including workshops and programs that address wellness, campus climate, and leadership development.

The GSRC as a whole works to form partnerships and other collaborative relationships on campus to connect students with resources and services, to develop programs and workshops to address unmet needs that help graduate students reach their academic and professional goals and, when possible, to bring existing services to a central location (usually, the Student Activities Center). The GSRC also provides advising to individual students who are seeking assistance in navigating the university’s resources and bureaucracy and to those who are experiencing challenges with any aspect of their graduate and professional education.

A primary role of the GSRC is to advocate for the needs of graduate students to be met. The GSRC has been the impetus for the creation of the Graduate Writing Center, the Graduate Student Orientation, and Equity, Inclusion, and Diversity Graduate Welcome Day. Through the GSRC-led Graduate and Professional Student Welfare Committee, the GSRC spearheaded a successful effort for enhanced graduate student career services at UCLA. The GSRC was involved in the development of the Kinross Recreation Center (KREC), as well as the efforts to provide residential life staff and to create a residents’ association at Weyburn Terrace. The GSRC led the effort to create the first comprehensive UCLA graduate student survey that addresses the concerns of graduate and professional students. The GSRC also took a lead role in developing the Financial Wellness Coordinator position in 2014. The GSRC participates on the Economic Crisis Response team on an ongoing basis, handling cases of graduate students in financial crisis; the GSRC also has a standing position on the Board of the Association of Graduate Counselors and Advisors, and actively serves on several Healthy Campus Initiative committees.

GSRC and GWC Oversight Committees

The Graduate Student Resource Center has an oversight committee made up of six graduate student representatives, two representatives from Student Affairs, one representative from Graduate Division, a faculty representative, and the GSRC Coordinator. The committee is meeting regularly to develop a strategic plan to guide the GSRC's activities and to ensure that we are meeting graduate student needs.

The Graduate Writing Center has an oversight committee made up of voting representatives (graduate students) from each of the academic areas represented on the Graduate Students Association Forum, as well as non-voting representatives from across campus community.