Graduate School Diversity Office logo with values listed around it: Community based, socially just, audacious, creative, holistic

GSDO Mission

The Graduate School Diversity Office supports and enhances graduate education by serving in an advisory capacity, leading initiatives, and collaborating across the University of Minnesota system. Our work encompasses recruitment, funding, retention, advocacy, and education of students from underrepresented communities. The signature programs of the GSDO prioritize domestic graduate students who identify as Indigenous and/or People of Color, inclusive of their intersectional identities, as they have been historically excluded in graduate education.

See full GSDO Mission, Vision, and Values

GSDO Pillars

GSDO operations take place in our Three Pillars: Outreach & Recruitment, Transition & Retention, and Faculty Consulting.



Collaborative efforts with U of M colleagues and nationally recognized partners to increase the  percentage of underrepresented incoming professional and graduate students.

U of MN Graduate Programs Fair

An annual event for prospective students to explore U of MN graduate programs.

Admissions & Applications Consultations 

Individual meetings with GSDO recruitment staff to help prospective students navigate the graduate school application process. 

Big 10 Academic Alliance Fee Waiver Program 

Effort to decrease a financial barrier to graduate admission. Prospective students who have not yet earned a post-baccalaureate degree are encouraged to apply.

McNair Scholars Visitation Program

Annual event welcoming more than 300 prospective students to campus to learn more about graduate education at the University of Minnesota.  

Diversity Recruitment Toolkit 

Digital resource to provide faculty and staff with the information and resources they need to support and build a diverse graduate and professional student body.

Graduate Recruitment Ambassadors Program

Opportunity for prospective students to connect with current graduate students and learn more about life at the U of M. 

U of M Graduate & Professional Schools (GAPS) Recruitment Council 

Online community of more than 75 members to discuss recruitment trends, share best practices, and coordinate recruitment efforts (see tab in the Diversity Recruitment Toolkit).

National Name Exchange 

Name-sharing database to expose talented, underrepresented undergraduate students to graduate programs across the nation. (see Connecting with Prospective Students tab in the Diversity Recruitment Toolkit)

Recruitment Calendar 

Take a look at this year’s recruitment calendar to see which conferences the GSDO, as well as U of M graduate and professional programs will be attending this year.


Research-based graduate programs may nominate eligible prospective graduate students for the Diversity of Views and Experiences (DOVE) Fellowship.



Summer Institute

Seven-week summer bridge program for GSDO Scholars to get acclimated to UMN, practice graduate-level research, and build a diverse cohort community.

GSDO Scholars

Network and ongoing support for graduate students who have either been awarded GSDO Fellowships and/or  attended the Summer Institute.

Community of Scholars Program (COSP)

Network, programming, and resources for all DOVE Fellows and domestic BIPOC graduate students in research-based programs at UMN and UMD.

SPARK e-zine

The SPARK e-zine is a digital publication that amplifies the research, experiences, and voices of COSP Scholars through public scholarship. 

Diversity Predoctoral Teaching Fellowships 

Doctoral COSP Scholars who are interested in faculty careers can apply for one-year pre-doctoral faculty positions at UMD and UMM while completing their dissertations.

First-Gen Connect

Network and resources for all first-generation college students in UMN graduate programs. 

Graduate Student Organizations & Resources

Short-list of diverse UMN Graduate Student Organizations, University resources, and Twin Cities resources that focus on supporting individuals from diverse backgrounds.

Graduate SEED Awards

Annual Graduate and Professional Scholarly Excellence in Equity and Diversity (SEED) Awards.




Faculty & Staff Resources 

One page with the most commonly requested resources for faculty and staff.

Request Consultation

Graduate programs, departments, and colleges are encouraged to connect with us to explore strategic approaches to enhanced recruitment and retention efforts for BIPOC and underrepresented graduate students.


Get to know the GSDO Staff >