UW Graduate School

Professional Development


July 2, 2020

Career Advice During COVID-19

As we continue to adjust to Stay Home, Stay Healthy orders for Washington state, the realities of a changed work environment and altered research expectations have clearly hit home. Unfortunately, the financial impact of Stay Home, Stay Healthy won’t be fully realized for a number of months, if not years. More importantly, it will be…


November 14, 2019

Is the job right for me?

Postdocs are often so busy trying to complete the next experiment or write the next draft of a manuscript (and hopefully get it published!), that we don’t have sufficient time to plan for the next stage of our careers. Usually, we start with reading job announcements, preparing our application materials, and then hoping to get…


October 19, 2019

Elevator Speech: An Effective Way to Communicate Your Work

Have you heard about the concept of an “elevator speech”? It’s a brief summary of who you are, what you do, and your career or project goals—with an emphasis on brief. Imagine running into the CEO of the dream company you’d like to work for, while waiting in line for coffee or taking an elevator:…


June 6, 2019

Crafting an Effective Diversity Statement and Cover Letter

In Spring 2019, the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (OPA), Core Programs in the Graduate School, the Center for Teaching and Learning (CTL), and the Office of Minority Affairs and Diversity (OMA&D) co-sponsored an interactive workshop led by the UW Postdoc Diversity Alliance, Crafting an Effective Diversity Statement and Cover Letter. A panel of four speakers —…


April 11, 2019

Enrich your portfolio through conferences

Since spring 2016, the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs has supported the professional and career development needs of postdocs towards independence through quarterly travel grants. To date, we have funded 66 postdocs to travel to regional, national and international conferences. Travel grant recipients kindly shared their conference experiences, and we are highlighting several of them here. We…


June 28, 2018

UW Ph.D. student wins $100,000 Schmidt Science Fellowship

Hal Holmes, a doctoral candidate in Bioengineering, has been selected as an inaugural Schmidt Science Fellow, an incredible honor that includes a $100,000 stipend and participation in a global meeting series — beginning at the University of Oxford in July — where fellows will learn about a range of scientific fields. Holmes — whose research on the development of an automated…


April 5, 2018

When the mentee becomes the mentor

As a grad student, you may have the opportunity to mentor an undergraduate student, or even a beginning grad student. But how do you make the most of this opportunity? As a mentor, you are in a position to provide intellectual, professional and social guidance to your mentee. If you are working with an undergraduate…


March 22, 2018

Are you ready for an academic career?

We know from reviewing national data that most entering postdocs believe they want a career in academia. And yet, a few years later, this career path becomes much less desirable. What happens? After seeing up close what your faculty go through — grant seeking, publication struggles, promotion demands, and other daily elements of the academic…


February 22, 2018

Postdocs, you are more skilled than you know!

Postdocs often reach out asking for advice regarding what to look for in a future career. You may have wondered yourself: Should I stay in academia or consider moving to an industry setting? I enjoy talking about science, should I get a job in policy, outreach, or K-12 education? It is important during these times of uncertainty…


January 4, 2018

Quick Tips for Fitting in Career Planning

Welcome back to all graduate students at Bothell, Seattle, and Tacoma campuses! We at Core Programs hope you created intentional space for yourself to relax and enjoy the holiday break. The start of a new calendar year is often a time to look ahead and set intentions that help you do well personally, academically and…



Next page