Dean Kull Reflects Back on First Year

On July 22, 2013 by Grad Forum

dean_kull_thumbnailDean Jon Kull just finished his first year as dean of Graduate Studies and recently took some time to reflect back on this past “whirlwind” of a year.

When asked what some of this year’s highlights have been, Kull remarked, “It’s been really fun just figuring out how everything works, and seeing everything that the Grad Office does for students behind the scenes. I’m super impressed with how great this office is! And, of course, meeting more graduate students has been great as well.” Dean Kull still maintains a lab in the chemistry department where he works closely with several chemistry and Molecular and Cellular Biology (MCB) graduate students, but says through his position as dean he has been able to get to know many more graduate students from all over campus.

Another exciting moment came at this year’s commencement exercises. “For me personally, to be able to hood students and hand out diplomas was really exciting and a great honor. I had not marched in a graduation since I graduated in 1988, and to not only march, but to be up on the platform introducing the degrees was really great.”

Other important moments have been the opportunity to meet regularly with senior Dartmouth administrators, such as past Interim President Carol Folt, and the deans of the other graduate programs. Kull values these meetings as a time he can “really be an advocate for graduate students at Dartmouth as a whole.” To be able to represent the needs of graduate students to Dartmouth’s leadership has helped to bring attention to this segment of the student body. “Dartmouth has been historically focused on undergrads, but over the past 10-15 years, there’s been a big shift in recognizing the value of graduate students at Dartmouth.” He looks forward to continuing to be a voice for graduate students.

When asked what we can expect in the new school year, Kull explained that the Graduate Studies Office is working on a professional development program wherein graduate students will be awarded a credit on their transcript for completing a certain number of professional development workshops. Additionally, the Graduate Studies Office will be moving locations from Wentworth Hall to a building on Dewey Road. Kull believes that the new school year “is going to be a real time of change, but it’s also going to be really interesting.”

Kull is also looking forward to working with President Philip Hanlon. “It’s going to be really exciting to see what President Hanlon’s vision is for graduate studies here at Dartmouth. I’ve met with him several times already, and President Hanlon is very committed to graduate programs.” With so much in the works, Kull emphasized what a great time it is to be a graduate student at Dartmouth. There is a lot of momentum surrounding many graduate student initiatives right now.

If you would like to meet with Dean Kull, he will be offering new weekly drop-in office hours this fall. He hopes this will be a time when graduate students can feel free to stop in and chat about anything and everything with him. Those hours will be posted before the fall term.

We congratulate Dean Kull on a job well done this past year and wish him the best in his second year as dean of Graduate Studies.

by Lisa Jackson

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