UC San Diego Materials Science and Engineering

Graduate Student Resources


The International Center is a multi-purpose facility created to foster cross-cultural exchange and international education for the UCSD campus community. The International Center provides services and programs for UCSD's 4,000+ international students and scholars and for approximately 500 study abroad participants.

Services include orientation, visa and immigration regulation advising, personal academic advising, and travel document issuance. The International Center also offers programs We also offer programs that foster global perspectives. Over 900 volunteers participate in a wide variety of International Center projects.

The UCSD's International Student and Scholar Office (ISSO) offer services and programs to current international students and scholars. This office assistants with adjustment to the campus community and enhance cross cultural interactions.

You can view Information for Prospective Students at web site: International Center Information Center.

HEALTH BENEFITS (Student Health Services)

The Graduate Student Health Insurance Plan (GSHIP) is a comprehensive health insurance plan. Enrollment in SHIP is mandatory for graduate, medical, and foreign students at UCSD. The health insurance premium is assessed and paid with registration fees. Spring SHIP coverage continues automatically through the summer. Waiver of SHIP enrollment requires approval of the SHS Insurance Representative after review of proof of existing comparable insurance. Waiver of SHIP also waives GSLIP.

Eligibility for health insurance Service:

A UCSD student paying full registration fees is entitled to use all the services of Student Health during each quarter for which he or she has been issued a valid student ID card. Since SHS is supported by a portion of the university registration fee, most health care services are available at no additional cost. Moderate fees are charged for certain services such as prescriptions and contraceptives, travel immunizations, dental and optometric care, and certain laboratory tests. A registered student may use SHS throughout the academic quarter as well as during breaks between academic sessions. During the summer, upon payment of a one-time summer fee health care is available to all continuing undergraduates, graduates and medical students who paid the previous spring quarter registration fee and are enrolled for fall quarter.


In recent years, increasing attention has been paid to identifying the core skills needed in order to be a successful graduate student and scientist in the highly competitive environment that today's research students and junior scientists face. The UCSD faculty are also involved in this process and at the time of writing, the Office of Graduate Studies and Research is compiling resource material for students and faculty.

Some important skills that have been identified include:

  • Study and work skills
  • General technical writing and presentation skills
  • How to write a scientific paper and respond to reviews
  • Making posters and slide presentations
  • Answering questions in public
  • Accurate data recording
  • The appropriate use of statistical analysis
  • Identifying an advisor and a research project
  • Searching the literature. Using the library effectively
  • Handling problems in the workplace
  • Relationships with faculty, students and staff
  • Writing grant applications. Getting financial support
  • Obtaining permission to use animal and human subjects
  • Creativity, management of time and stress
  • Teaching skills
  • Preparing for life after graduate school. Career management. Negotiation.
  • Preparing a CV
  • Social responsibility of research
  • Communicating with the public

Of course this list is incomplete but it gives you an idea of the many new skills that you will need to develop as a successful graduate student.

While most of these skills are acquired informally in the process of obtaining a graduate degree, there are many advocates, especially students themselves, of some optional formal training in these areas. At present UCSD does not have a program or course that covers all these areas, but some courses cover some of the areas mentioned above.

UCSD Career Services offers a plethora of resources for students to improve their skills and thrive at UCSD: http://career.ucsd.edu/

UCSD Materials Science and Engineering Program Career Network