Core Skill: Career Development
Career Development is the process through which people develop and achieve professional goals. It involves assessing one’s career values, interests, and skills and actively exploring career fields of interest through networking, mentorship, and gaining relevant professional experiences to expand one’s competencies.
Rackham offers several annual career-development programs, including:
Rackham Embedded Coordinator for Graduate Student Career Advancement
Dr. Kirsten Elling provides career coaching, advising, and programming to doctoral students in order to help them navigate challenges and build a successful career. You can schedule an appointment with Dr. Elling here.
Gear Your Career
At this two-hour event held annually in January, participants take professional headshots, get business cards printed, and/or consult briefly with a U-M career and professional-development expert on their LinkedIn profile. This event is open to master’s and doctoral students.
Held annually in May, this one-day program for doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows gives participants from similar disciplinary backgrounds the opportunity to learn from a guest career-exploration expert and to meet with mentors working in a range of fields beyond the professoriate. The program alternates between a focus on the humanities/social sciences and STEM every other year.
This one-day, multidisciplinary career conference is held annually in April to support doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows in their exploration of career paths beyond academe. Participants learn about career opportunities beyond the professoriate through interactive sessions with Ph.D.s working in diverse fields and workshops focused on career exploration and job search preparation.
Designing Your Life
Inspired by Stanford’s Designing Your Life program, this interactive, six-week seminar teaches students principles for designing a fulfilling career. The seminar is held annually in the fall semester and is open to master’s students, doctoral students, and postdoctoral fellows.
Rackham also regularly offers workshops on career-development topics, including future-faculty workshops and alumni career conversations. Check the Rackham events page for these regular programs and workshops.
Academic careers, writing a teaching philosophy, productivity in grad school.
Confidential career consultations and workshops on diverse career options.
Nationally recognized program to prepare Ph.D. candidates for the academic job search and faculty positions.
Michigan Engineering workshops to strengthen and diversify the next generation of academic leaders.
Fellows assess the technical and market potential of new U-M inventions.
Career and professional development for biomedical post-baccalaureate, graduate, and postdoctoral trainees.
Information on non-academic careers for Ph.D.s, A.B.D.s, and master’s degree holders.
Career exploration and planning for humanities and social-science doctoral students.
Career exploration and Individual Development Plan tool for STEM doctoral students.
Upcoming Career Development Events
Restoration, Transformation, and Leadership: Centering Healing in the Actions We Take Towards Racial Equity
Graduate Student Career Pathways: Cover Letters and Resumes for Internships and Positions Beyond the Tenure Track
Contact Professional and Academic Development
1530 Rackham Building
915 E. Washington St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1070
Phone: (734) 647-4013
Fax: (734) 936-2848
Professional and Academic Development is open Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
The office is closed Saturdays and Sundays and on the following holidays: Thanksgiving (Thursday and the following Friday), Christmas through New Year's, Memorial Day, Independence Day (July 4), and Labor Day.