Simca Bouma, Sam Kohn Created Peer Training Workshop
Just as graduate students at UC Berkeley have taken the lead in conducting climate surveys, they have also been proactive in offering solutions for poor academic climate. Three years ago, physics graduate students Simca Bouma and Sam Kohn created a peer training workshop called Respect is Part of Research (RPR). Their goal was to train incoming graduate students about the intricacies of their new academic role.
In the workshop, the physics students give a lecture about resources and definitions, which was created with advice from OPHD and the Path to Care Center. After that, first-year students break off into groups and have conversations with senior graduate students from their own program who’ve been trained to lead them through case studies. The case studies are real incidents that have been reported to OPHD in the past—changed to protect the identities of the people involved.
Fiona M. Doyle, Dean of the Graduate Division, said in a statement on UC Berkeley’s Graduate Division website, “I’ve been heartened by the involvement of students in education to prevent and respond to sexual violence and harassment.” OPHD and Path to Care support the RPR efforts. Now, the workshop counts as a substitute for the University-wide training that all incoming graduate students have to take, says Kohn.
Read the entire story in the Fall 2016 Berkeley Science Review