At this point, the Graduate School gives MAAS 3 Graduate Assistants (GAs) per semester. Faculty who wish to work with a GA should submit a brief application (a paragraph is sufficient) to the MAAS Director regarding (an) anticipated projects for their GA. If they are looking for a GA who has particular skills/experiences (for example, was originally a Lit or Hist major, has experience doing archival research, has previously worked on project, has special exposure to subject matter/method), they should indicate as much in their application. If they are interested in working with a specific student, particularly one who is uniquely trained to aid in their current project, they should write a recommendation for that student explaining why they endorse and wish to work with him/her.
Unless s/he does not want one, one GA will automatically be assigned to the MAAS Director to assist with program related matters. The additional 2 GAs will first be offered to MAAS faculty teaching that semester, then to American Studies Faculty (those who teach core classes), and then to American Studies Affiliated Faculty (those who teach electives and also do service and/or scholarship in the field). Priority will be given to those who serve the program and who have not previously worked with a GA.
GAs should be assigned projects that will help their professional and/or academic development. As the Graduate Assistantship Handbook explains: “Assignments are diverse and encompass a wide variety of responsibilities. To the extent possible, graduate assistants are provided assignments that complement their areas of academic study. While the graduate assistants’ duties may involve some clerical work, the assistantship is expected to serve as a meaningful learning experience.
“For example, a graduate assistant may work collaboratively with faculty and/or staff members:
· On a research or program project
· Refining their skills as a researcher
· Gathering and analyzing data
· Creating content, updating and designing a Web site
· Proof reading
· On curricular projects for an undergraduate course
· Performing other tasks as determined by the student’s graduate program
· Assisting the graduate school on a project related to graduate education
· Representing your graduate program at meeting or informational sessions” (4).
When possible and appropriate, MAAS encourages faculty working with GAs to provide them with a teaching experience, such as teaching a class or a portion of class. MAAS also encourages faculty to work with their GAs in presenting their work in a professional context, including at Stockton’s Day of Scholarship.