Become a Member
Common Grounds recruits and selects around 30 graduate students from across the University of Minnesota each fall. Usually 40-50 candidates complete our short online application, which is due this year on September 9, 2012 at 11PM. We hope you consider joining us!
Membership Involvement Expectations
Joining Common Grounds means committing to complete one consulting project and one leadership task for the group while participating in various group events during the year.
One Consulting Project
The central activity of the Common Grounds year is the consulting project. All members work with a small team on one tightly-scoped capacity building consulting project for a community organization during the first eight weeks of the spring semester. While the project is underway, members prepare to spend five hours per week on the project. During the fall, members meet twice with their project leader to help create the project vision and work plan.
We also ask each member to take on one concrete leadership task to contribute to the whole group experience. These tasks can be done individually or in small groups. Possibilities include becoming the project lead for the consulting project; doing a short and fun 5-minute PPT (Give & Take Presentation) about a topic you love that is relevant to Common Grounds’ mission; organizing a speaker or panel event; and helping organize an alumni happy hour. If you have other suggestions, we want to hear it! At Common Grounds we choose what we do, then do what we choose.
Common Grounds is a special community that is built only through personal interaction. We ask members to participate regularly in group events throughout the year. However, we also understand that graduate student schedules are as varied as they are busy, so we understand if you cannot make all activities. Our goal is to make your Common Grounds experience meaningful but completely manageable.
Below are the tentative dates for fall term activities. Please check your availability and keep them on your calendars. Most meetings take place over the lunch hour, and we plan to provide desserts. We will discuss and finalize these dates at the kickoff lunch.
Online application deadline, September 9, 11 PM. Notified by September 12
Fall Kickoff Lunch, Monday September 17, noon–1pm, CSOM 1-132
First Give & Take Dessert, Monday September 24, 12:15–1pm, CSOM 1-132
Second Give & Take Dessert, Tuesday October 2, 12:15–1pm, CSOM 1-132
Dessert Meeting, Thursday October 11, 12:15–1pm, Humphrey 25
Project Unveiling & Preferencing, Monday October 29, 12:15-1pm, Humphrey 20
Project Scoping, Thursday, November 1, 12:15-1pm, Humphrey 35
Project Work Planning, sometime during the week of November 26-29, details TBA
During the spring projects, we will meet less often as an entire group. After winter break we will have a project kickoff. After the projects, we will have finale celebration, which will include a happy hour with alumni. We also may have a speaker event or two scheduled after projects are completed.
How do I apply?
It’s simple and fast. Complete and submit our short application by September 9, 2012 at 11 PM. Before then, consider reaching out to one of our steering committee members to introduce yourself and ask any questions you might have.
"Common Grounds recruits engaged, committed members. The Common Grounds steering committee each year selects students to fill open positions on the team. We are looking for unique experience and forceful, creative ideas that will add value to Common Grounds."