Upon acceptance into the PhD program, students are assigned the first of two faculty advisors. The initial faculty advisor is on the PhD Admission Committee and is partly responsible for the student’s admittance into the program. They make interview calls and give the approval to offer admission.

The advisor chooses the core course work for incoming students and at times will modify it for specific students, based on the student’s prior course work or knowledge base.

Students will meet with their adviser periodically to help prepare for course work and qualifying exams.

At the end of the second year, the student will begin working with a professor who will, it is hoped, become his or her sponsor. This selection process is based on research interests. The initial faculty advisor will be a valuable resource as the student determines which faculty member he or she would like to ask for sponsorship. It is then up to the student to seek research assistant (RA) positions with the faculty member he or she is interested in working with as a sponsor.