The UCLA Graduate Division received an award at the 55th annual Council of Graduate Schools conference on Dec. 3 in Seattle, Washington, in recognition of its commitment to assisting graduate students toward degree completion and promoting inclusiveness.

Presented jointly by Educational Testing Services (ETS) and the Council of Graduate Schools (CGS), the 7th annual ETS/CGS Award for Innovation in Promoting Success in Graduate Education: From Admission Through Completion was accepted on UCLA’s behalf by Robin Garrell, UCLA’s vice provost for Graduate Education and dean of the Graduate Division. 

Included with the award is a $20,000 grant that recognizes promising, innovative proposals to enhance student success as well as serve as a model to other schools. The grant will fund the UCLA Graduate Division's proposal to create a new Smart Recommendations tool to provide targeted information about funding opportunities to students based on their unique backgrounds, academic pursuits and goals. The tool will build upon UCLA’s existing web-based Graduate and Postdoctoral Educational Support platform. Once completed, Smart Recs will be expanded to include additional resources in support of student success, such as information on campus seminars and workshops, professional and career development opportunities and key deadlines.

“We are excited about developing a dynamic, customized recommendation system that will support the success of UCLA graduate students,” Garrell said. “The potential impact of Smart Recs extends well beyond our campus. Because the software architecture is largely open-source, we look forward to exploring ways the underlying technology and infrastructure can be shared.”