Graduate students join the department as a cohort each fall semester. During the first month, students participate in a matching process. This includes the ability to meet with as many faculty members as they would like (at least 3), participation in research group meetings or current graduate student shadowing, and 1:1 meetings with potential faculty advisors to discuss research topics, expectations, and mentorship styles. Students are then asked to rank available projects based on their interests. Based on these rankings and other factors, students are matched with a Ph.D. thesis advisor in early October. Thus, accepted students are free to explore their options once they arrive on campus. Accepted students are encouraged to reach out to the research groups that interest them- either the professor or students in the research group- to learn more information.