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Frequently Asked Questions

The Rackham Graduate School sponsors an ongoing program of interdisciplinary workshops, which is overseen by Associate Dean Catherine Sanok. This program has two goals. First, it is designed to encourage exchange and collaboration among graduate students, faculty, postdocs, and staff who share intellectual interests but do not necessarily have an easily available forum in common because they have different academic affiliations. Second, it is designed to help advanced doctoral students form working groups that support the development of research projects and dissertation writing.

Can I participate as a member in more than one RIW?
Yes, the workshops are designed to ease the isolation that can characterize dissertation work in some fields.
Can I serve as a student coordinator in more than one RIW?
No, it is strongly discouraged due to the time commitment the RIW will require.
How many faculty sponsors can each RIW have?
Each RIW can have up to four faculty sponsors.
What is the minimum number of members required to form an RIW?
The RIW is required to have at least six members.
How many student coordinators can an RIW have?
The RIW may have up to five student coordinators, one of which must be a candidate, preferably in their third to sixth year of study.
When is the deadline to apply for a new or to renew an RIW?
The deadline for renewals or new requests is July 21 for full year funding or January 4 for the remainder of the year.
What is the annual funding limit?
The annual funding limit is $5,000 for the full year and $2,500 for the remainder of the academic year.
Will the RIW run a deficit?
Yes, the RIW will run a deficit and funds will be distributed to the shortcode created by the RIW’s finance administrator. Funding is distributed after the year-end report has been submitted and approved by Associate Dean, Catherine Sanok.
Can an RIW divide the student stipend?
Yes, the stipend can be shared if there is more than one coordinator. However, the amount cannot exceed $1,500 with the minimum of $500 in total.
When is the year-end report due?
The year-end report is due June 1 of each academic year.
Can I submit a renewal prior to submitting the year-end report?
No. The system will not allow the RIW to renew until Rackham has received the year-end report.
When does the academic year end?
The academic year ends May 31.
Can postdocs serve as an RIW coordinator?
No. Postdocs can participate in an RIW, but they cannot serve as an RIW coordinator.