GOINI Energizes the INI, Coast to Coast

October 27, 2011

The Graduate Student Organization @ INI (GOINI) started off the 2011-2012 school year strong in both Pittsburgh and Silicon Valley. GOINI is a student organization that provides opportunities for students to test out their leadership and networking skills while forming lasting bonds with their fellow peers and building an awareness of the INI.

One of GOINI's first events in Pittsburgh this year was a "Don't Struggle Like I Did" (DSLID) program that was initiated by fellow student Marcus Smith who saw the need for students to get support "to help them deal with everything that comes as a part of the graduate school experience."

"Divine inspiration led me to propose the idea to the INI management and staff back in April 2011 after it was suggested at a townhall meeting," he said. "Prior to this, I had noticed students reaching out to each other for support through the difficult times. The overwhelming support from the INI as a whole and my experience as a community organizer assisted in the set-up process."

Just as the title suggests, DSLID brought together both new and old INI students, approximately 50 people, with 40 first-years and 10 second-years, so that new students could get advice on things like time management, student life, and CMU in general. GOINI staff coordinator Jessica Becker worked with the students to map out the event's success, as well as GOINI's other activities for the semester.

"Overall I think the event was a success," said Travis Safford, Vice President of GOINI. "We plan on having another meeting in November that will focus on studying and stress management."

For another event, GOINI sponsored a happy hour recently. Taking place at Mario's in Shadyside, many INI students showed up for a much deserved study break while taking advantage of free food and drinks and the opportunity to get to know some of their fellow students.

Two more events that INI students can look forward to include a Halloween Movie Night and a GOINI Bowling Night. The movie night will be held at the DEC@CIC on Friday, October 27. INI students are encouraged to come in costume and enjoy pizza while watching a 'scary' movie, which is yet to be determined. As for you bowling fans out there, GOINI plans to cover the cost of bowling for a few hours on a selected night later in the semester.

While indoor events were planned here in Pittsburgh as the colder months arrived, Nandita Narla, Vice President of GOINI at Carnegie Mellon University's Silicon Valley Campus, had other plans. The first GOINI event in Silicon Valley was a picnic by Shoreline Lake. The students enjoyed some time outdoors that included kayaking and a delicious lunch buffet.

Whether you are an INI student at the Pittsburgh or Silicon Valley campus, you are sure to find enticing GOINI social events to attend this semester.

In late November, GOINI will accept nominations for new officers from the MS23 class. Any INI student may nominate himself/herself or a classmate, and students are encouraged to learn more about what it is like to be an officer by participating in some of the upcoming events and talking with other GOINI members.

Watch the video of GOINI's 2011 picnic.

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