Graduate Student Advocacy Series

The Graduate Student Committee recently released a new series of Q&As around advocacy as a graduate student. Each column in the Graduate Student Advocacy Series is centered around a specific advocacy-related topic pertinent to the graduate student experience.

If you have an idea for a future topic, email Lar Htoo, Advocacy Coordinator for the NASP Graduate Student Committee, at

pdfHow to Advocate ... for or as International Students (PDF)

Diksha Bali, University of Maryland College Park
Lamia Bagasrawala, Michigan State University

In this Q&A, Diksha and Lamia share their personal experiences and histories that shape their passion for supporting international students. They discuss important issues to understand when advocating for international students and resources and tips to employ.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... Research Opportunities and Experiences (PDF)

Celeste Vega, University of Arizona

In this Q&A, Celeste provides examples of research experience to advocate for and how to join a research team and navigate the dynamics of that team. She also shares advice for other first-generation, international graduate students of color in gaining research opportunities.

Taylor Martin del Campo & David Ifediba, California State University, Long Beach

In this Q&A, Taylor and David share their own positionality, normalize impostor syndrome, provide concrete steps to remedy it, and offer suggestions to foster connection and belonging particularly for first-generation, international graduate students of color.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... a Student Organization on Your Campus (PDF)

Blaine Marshall and Amanda Lebrun, Texas Women's University

In this Q&A, Blaine and Amanda discuss the process of starting a campus organization for school psychology graduate students, including important considerations for long-term viability of the group.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... Learning Diversity in Graduate School (PDF)

Sarah Manchanda, University of California, Berkeley

In this Q&A, Sarah shares her experience as a graduate student with a disability and what advice she would give others to help them support their peers or students to avoid an emotionally and physically draining experience.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... and as, a First-Generation Student (PDF)

Chelsea Greer, Wichita State University

In this Q&A, Chelsea shares her learning curve when entering graduate school as a first-generation student, what she wish she felt comfortable asking or discussing, and why self-care can be extra crucial for a graduate student from a low-income family.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... Work–Life Balance (PDF)

Diya Arun, School Psychology Graduate Student

In this Q&A, Diya shares how she initially struggled to balance work-related responsibilities and her graduate training and how she worked with her supervisor to help balance her priorities. She also shares tangible suggestions for others facing similar challenges with competing demands.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... Your Ideal Practicum and Internship Experiences (PDF)

Sabrina Kahn, BA, School Psychology EdS Candidate, 2022

In this Q&A, Sabrina shares how she transformed her practicum experience to better meet her career goals and professional interests. She shares various tips and suggestions to help evaluate her experience midyear and what it taught her that she could take with her to craft a valuable internship experience.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... Doctoral Research Funding (PDF)

Amy K. Izuno-Garcia, MEd, Graduate Student
University of Houston

In this Q&A, Amy shares her perspective on obtaining funding for doctoral research and encourages her peers not to get discouraged by the application process. She shares what she has learned and what advice she has to get a jump start on the process.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... Diversifying Graduate Programs in School Psychology (PDF)

Renee K. Bastian, BA, Graduate Student
Florida International University

In this Q&A, Renee shares her experience researching recruiting and retaining diverse graduate students and practitioners, considers barriers to achieving this, and suggests steps graduate students can take to begin diversifying their own program.

pdfHow to Advocate During ... National School Psychology Week (NSPW) (PDF)

Evelyn G. Abbott, BA, Graduate Student
Middle Tennessee State University

In this Q&A, Evelyn explains why it is so important to her personally to engage in advocacy around the profession, why it can feel like an uphill battle at times, and what activities her student organization has done for NSPW in the past.

pdfHow to Advocate for, and as, BIPOC Students (PDF)

Jessica Wright, MS, Graduate Student
Nova Southeastern University

In this Q&A, Jessica explains why it is so important to know what issues and policies you want to advocate for specific to the BIPOC community, how to move forward once you know where you want to focus your time, and how to engage in self-care so you are recharged and able to serve others.

pdfHow to Advocate for...Self-care in the Midst of a Crisis (PDF)

Catherine Ivey, BS, and Catalina Uribe, MS, Graduate Students
Nova Southeastern University

In this Q&A, Catherine and Catalina provide advice and guidance on best practices related to self-care in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes information on the challenges of consistent self-care during a health crisis, suggestions on how to stay active and reduce stress, methods for staying connected with others while maintaining social distancing, and more!

pdfHow to Advocate for ... Supervision (PDF)

Meaghan C. Guiney, PhD, NCSP, Assistant Professor
Fairleigh Dickinson University

In this Q&A, Meaghan explains how by being clear about what you want and need out of a supervisor can make a huge difference for your professional growth and development in graduate school and how most supervisors may be skilled in school psychology but may look to you as the supervisee to tell them what you want to get out of the relationship and what goals you have for yourself.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... SPAW (PDF)

Nicole M. McKevett, MA, NCSP, NASP Student Leader
University of Minnesota - Twin Cities

In this Q&A, Nicole provides actionable steps to take when it comes to planning for School Psychology Awareness Week (SPAW) whether you're just starting grad school or getting ready to graduate. She shares who to connect with, what questions to ask them, and more.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... Yourself (PDF)

Stephanie Campbell, NASP Graduate Student Committee
University of Wisconsin

In this Q&A, Stephanie discusses how she came to realize the importance of advocating for herself, steps you can take to start advocating for yourself, and things to remember as you approach the end of your graduate school career.

pdfHow to Advocate for ... Self-Care (PDF)

Lisa Kelly-Vance, PhD, NASP Immediate Past President
University of Nebraska–Omaha

In this Q&A, Lisa discusses how to build self-care into your daily routine and where to start if you don't currently practice enough self-care. She explains what to consider regarding self-care habits when transitioning out of graduate school and why self-care is so important.

Advocacy for Graduate Students

If you're passionate about legislative advocacy, view our fact sheet for a variety of action steps and resources to engage in advocacy as a graduate student.

Graduate Students Community

Seek advice and support from your peers or share your successes in the Graduate Students online community. Join the conversation today!

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