January 19, 2022
How Aurora can help you prepare for a job search in 2022
Did you know? Michigan State University has partnered with Beyond the Professoriate to provide graduate students and postdocs on our campus with on-demand courses and live webinars to help them prepare for nonacademic and academic job searches.
Join the Beyond Prof Team on January 19th at Noon ET to learn about Beyond Prof’s resources and how e-learning by Beyond the Professoriate can help you prepare for your job search after your degree or postdoc.
After attending this presentation, you'll be able to:
- Describe the challenges PhDs face in their job search.
- Identify the resources in Aurora that can help you .
- Apply tips and strategies to confidently begin your career exploration and job search.
This webinar is sponsored by ETS®.
Explore Your Options
We know that there are many meaningful career options for PhDs. It’s important to know that you have options. We also want you to know that you have the support of your institution to pursue whatever career pathway you choose.
One way to explore career options is to reach out to alumni from your program who now work in careers of interest. Make a list of questions you have about nonacademic or academic careers. Reach out to them by email or LinkedIn and ask to speak to them for 20 minutes via Zoom or by phone.
Informational interviews are an important and critical part of career exploration. Think of a job search as a research project and alumni as subject matter experts. Informational interviews are a chance for you to gather information to help you make decisions about what you’d like to do after your degree or postdoc, and prepare for a job search.
Just like in a research project, you want to test your hypothesis by gathering data. Maybe you've been focused on a specific career pathway, but consider how much you know about the day-to-day work of a faculty member or a professional in a specific career field. Things are also changing rapidly, especially due to the pandemic.
Here are a couple of questions you can ask people about their careers:
1) What energizes you about the work you’re doing now?
2) How does the work you’re doing now relate to your graduate studies?
3) What are the most important skills or characteristics a person needs to be successful in this career?
4) Do you think this is a growing or shrinking field?
5) If I were to pursue this career, what might my next steps be?
A New Year’s Challenge
Try doing one informational interview per week for 6 weeks. Don’t limit yourself to just one career - speak to people who work in a range of jobs across all industries. Challenge whatever assumptions you may have about academic or professional careers.
At the end of 6 weeks, reflect on what you have learned. What additional questions do you have? What information would you need to gather to make a decision about what you'd like to try next in your career?
Good luck and happy exploring.