This Week @ GCDI

students looking at laptop screen. one points something out on the screen

Welcome to another packed week at GC Digital Initiatives! I want to begin this week’s post by highlighting 2 opportunities to receive funding for your research: Provost’s Digital Innovation Grants (PDIG) and the Data for Public Good program. This year, master’s and doctoral students qualify for any of the 3 categories of PDIG award: training, start up, and implementation awards ranging from $500 – $6,000. Students in good standing who will be enrolled in Spring 2023 from any discipline are eligible. Please read below for more information about the grants and how to apply. The Data for Public Good project will support up teams of researchers who propose a public data-centered project. More information and how to apply is also found below.

This week we’re also offering two workshops on spreadsheets (for beginners) and tabular data. We also will be hosting User Group meetings for those interested in digital mapping and Python. Also, you won’t want to miss GC Digital Fellow Sam O’Hana’s latest blog post on the Right to Repair as an important political movement for building equitable access in our digital futures.

You can find out more on our website (, which includes weekly posts about ongoing events, and through social media. Follow us on Twitter (@cunygcdi and @digital_fellows) or now on Instagram (@digital_fellows).

Table of Contents

    1. Calls for Applications: Applications are now open for the Provost’s Digital Innovation Grants and the Data For Public Good program. More information about both opportunities are below
    2. Workshops: Workshops are structured, hands-on learning opportunities that are free and open to all GC-affiliated students, faculty, and staff. Registration using the links below is required to receive a Zoom link.
    3. User Group Meetings: User Group meetings are informal, interdisciplinary, free, and CUNY-wide communities of researchers and pedagogues who use similar digital tools. This week the Mapping User Group and the Python User Group will be meeting. These meetings offer a welcoming space for beginners through advanced researchers to discuss potential projects, current challenges, or specific problems. Instructions on how to join each group can be found below.
    4. Python and Web Design Series: If you’ve always wanted to learn how to use Python to improve your research, now is your opportunity to join a short workshop series that GC Digital Fellow Rebecca Krisel and Postdoctoral Fellow Chelsea Lane are leading this month. The series includes 5 workshops that take participants from the basics through ingesting data using APIs. Or, if you’re more interested in website design, you might prefer another series led by Chelsea Lane and GC Digital Fellow Zach Lloyd. Details about both series can be found below. Don’t forget to register for each workshop!

Calls for Applications

Provost’s Digital Innovation Grants (PDIG) DUE: FRIDAY, November 11th @ 5 PMApplications for the Provost’s Digital Innovation Grants (PDIG) are supported this year through generous funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) as part of the American Rescue Plan. Apply for financial support for training in digital skills (up to $500), to start and create a proof of concept digital project (up to $2,000), or to implement a proof of concept (up to $6,000). All Spring 2023 matriculated master’s and doctoral students in good standing are eligible to apply.More information available on our website: apply, complete the application at

Data for Public Good DUE: Monday, November 8, 2023 @ 5 PMFor the fifth year, GC Digital Initiatives and the Mina Rees Library are accepting applications from Graduate Center students who have achieved an introductory fluency with the Python programming language to participate in a collaborative project designed to provide experience working with public-facing data and programming to produce a collaborative project for the public good. This year, applications will be accepted as collaborative proposals from groups of 3-8 students. Applications will consist of a proposed dataset and project plan. Successful teams will have the opportunity to work with advisors, draw on local expertise– in project management, outreach, development, Python programming, website design, data visualization, and more– and will each receive $1,000 stipends to support the realization of their project.More information is available on our website: apply, complete the application at


NOTE: All workshops will take place on Zoom. Registration is free but required in order to receive the Zoom link.

Spreadsheets aren’t Boring! Spreadsheets for Beginners, Thursday, October 20, 4:00 – 5:30 PM​Microsoft Excel/Google Spreadsheets is a powerful tool used by researchers to quickly summarize, clean, and make sense of data. Learning this tool could also build a foundation to learn other data analysis tools like R or Python. No experience necessary, suitable to researchers completely new to data analysis. The workshop will demonstrate how one could clean up and sort data and review functions for summary statistics, and if time permits a demo on making charts and pivot tables. Feel free to bring your own dataset but not necessary. Access to Microsoft Excel is preferred but Google Spreadsheets and Libreoffice are comparable free softwares.Learn more and or register here: Spreadsheet Workshop

Tables and Pandas and Python! Oh my! Friday, October 28th, 2:00 – 4:00 PMIn this online synchronous workshop (part three of the Fall Python Series), we are going to learn some basic commands in Pandas, an expansive Python library for working with tabular data (aka spreadsheets). Some introductory Python knowledge is necessary, since we will not have time to go over the basics during the workshop. Learn more and or register here: Tables and Pandas and Python! Oh my!

User Group Meetings

Mapping User Group Meeting, Thursday Oct 20th, 4:00 – 5:00 PMMapping working group is a network of CUNY students, faculty and staff who are interested in sharing methods and techniques, and finding support from others about ways GIS can be used to further research and teaching.
Sign up for sessions here

Python User Group Meeting, Friday Oct 21st, 3:00 – 4:00 PMPython User’ Group (or PUG for short) is an open and informal collaborative space for experimentation and exploration with the Python programming language. This week in PUG we will review some of the key concepts learned during the Text Analysis with NLTK workshop held online on 10/14. If you were not able to attend that workshop but are interested in continuing with the Fall Python Series, this is a great time to catch up and get ready for the next workshop!
See here for more details and join our PUG commons group to receive the Zoom link!

Python and Web Design Series

Fall Python Series: An Exploration of Research Tools for Beginners, biweekly Fridays from 2-4pm, continuing Friday, October 14th.  

The Fall Python Series comprises 5 total workshops that take students from never having used Python before through skills such as text analysis and data cleaning to web scraping and using APIs. Participants are expected to sign up for all workshops in the series (listed below) and maintain regular participation. If you missed our Introduction to Python workshop on 9/30, you are welcome to catch up using our online curriculum and join us for the remaining workshops. Core skills will continue to be explained and reinforced as we work on projects over the course of the semester and in Python User Group (PUG) meetings that meet alternative weeks on Fridays from 3-4:00PM.

Please register for the following workshops to take part in the Fall Python Series:

Web Development Series

GCDI is hosting a series of four sequential workshops on web development over the course of this academic year. This fall, we will cover setting up the structure of a webpage using HTML CSS, and Bootstrap, and in the spring, we will add interactivity to our web pages using JavasScript and Leaflet. If you miss a workshop in the series, but want to attend the next one, please check out our online resource on HTML and CSS, or send us an email.

Find out more and register now for the next workshop in the web development series on 11/4 from 1-3:00PM: Using Bootstrap to create visually stunning web pages.


New on our Blog: Ever considered repairing your own electronics? Digital Fellow Sam O’Hana explains the Right To Repair and why it’s become an important political movement in the U.S. and Europe. Find it on Tagging the Tower.

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