nontraditional careers for academics

Three ways to increase employer responses to your job application

2018-10-02T02:29:27+00:00June 29th, 2015|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Not getting the hits you want from numerous job applications you’ve submitted? There’s no magic bullet to getting a job offer – it can take a month to find the right job or it could take 12 months. External factors such as industry hiring cycles can stretch out the time from job search to job offer. However, there may be some areas of your search that are holding you back. 1.  Review the types of jobs you’re applying to. Are they a good fit for you? Do you actually have examples of using these skills or doing things similar to those listed in the “essential responsibilities” section? In any job search you should apply for jobs that stretch you a bit. You do not have to have every single skill or know every piece of software listed in the job ad. However, [...]

Is your resume telling your story?

2018-10-02T02:29:27+00:00June 16th, 2015|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , |

Tooting your own horn on your resume during your transition from academia to your first postacademic job can be tough. All of your accomplishments to date have been relevant to academia and they are expertly displayed on your multi-page academic CV. But the resume makes you wonder, How are my experiences relevant to an employer or recruiter? How can I pack all my experiences and accomplishments into a 1-page resume? What should I cut when transitioning my CV to a resume? Will employers take chance on me even thought most of my experience has been in the academy? There’s no one size fits all answer to these questions. Overall your goal is to communicate where you’ve been, what you accomplished while there, and how you want to contribute those skills (and your awesomeness) in the next position. Sounds easy enough, right? Here [...]

FAQ: How do I get a job doing what I love?

2018-10-02T02:29:29+00:00January 6th, 2014|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

I've been compiling a list of FAQs that I receive from graduate students and PhDs so that I can share insights with you. I'll occasionally post these FAQs and my responses in an effort to show that you're not the only one asking real, practical questions about nonacademic careers and to help you think through your career journey. This FAQ is from a client consultation I did via email with a prospective graduate student in filmmaking, who has a background in Anthropology and Digital Media.  CLIENT FAQ: "I'm mostly looking for mentorship and guidance with some issues I'm struggling with in terms of my future professional pursuits. I know that I am not satisfied with the reality of pursuing filmmaking in isolation of my passion for community outreach and organizing, academia, writing and minority advocacy. However, I am stuck in discovering a way to integrate [...]

Job security outside of academia?

2018-10-02T02:29:29+00:00December 30th, 2013|Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

As I present to PhDs on college campuses and conferences, graduate students express their concern about the lack of job security in nonacademic careers.  The academic career path comes with a sense of job security because job options are clearly set. You either get a postdoc fellowship, visiting professorship, lecturer position, research position, tenure track job, or the dreaded adjunct or contingent position (but that's another topic for another day). Take note of the ratio of temporary to long-term positions among these options.  Perhaps what PhDs are really saying is that academic careers come with a high level of job predictability, rather than job security. Nonacademic careers are the vast unknown for many graduate students who may not have spent much time in career planning, career exploration or out-of-classroom/department/university experiences.  When beginning to look at careers outside the academy, PhD career changers tend [...]

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