Professional Development: A Seminar for Graduate Students and Junior Faculty Members

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Thursday, October 12th, 2017

Thursday, October 12, 201712:00PM - 4:00PM108N, North House, 1 Devonshire Place
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Graduate students discuss their career opportunities with a great deal of gallows humour. Student lounges and faculty meeting rooms echo with stories about the saturated job market and sorrowful accounts of classmates and former students caught on the dreaded sessional treadmill. It is true that there is, in most academic fields and particularly in the social sciences and humanities, a mismatch between the number of tenure-track faculty positions and the number of PhD graduates. It is not true, however, that recently minted PhDs are destined for penury and a professional life of long-term underemployment.

This half-day seminar examines key stages and strategies in the professional lives of individuals who are completing or have completed their PhDs. It reviews the nature of academic employment in North America and internationally, and covers such topics as:

* Making the most of your time in graduate school;
* Establishing an academic and professional persona;
* Professional engagement and creating contacts outside the academy;
* Converting your PhD research into scholarly interest in your career;
* Is there a “publish and prosper” strategy?
* Breaking out of the (academic) comfort zone: considering jobs in non-traditional places.
* Knowing when to switch to a non-academic career.
* Succeeding in the academy: from tenure-terror to professional success.

The seminar aims to provide graduate students and junior faculty members with a practical guide to managing expectations and developing strategies for career success.

The seminar is led by Dr. Ken Coates, former President of the Japan Studies Association, with assistance from Dr. Carin Holroyd, University of Saskatchewan, and Dr. David Welch, University of Waterloo. Dr. Coates is currently the Canada Research Chair in Regional Innovation, University of Saskatchewan. He has held senior administrative roles at the University of Waterloo, the University of Saskatchewan, the University of New Brunswick at Saint John, the University of Waikato and the University of Northern British Columbia. He has diverse and interdisciplinary interests in such fields as Japan studies, science, technology and society, Indigenous rights, northern development, and Northern Canadian history.

Lunch will be provided.


Eileen Lam


Ken Coates
Canada Research Chair in Regional Innovation, University of Saskatchewan

Carin Holroyd
Associate Professor of Political Studies, University of Saskatchewan

David Welch
Dean's Distinguished Visiting Scholar, Endowed Chair Program in Japanese Politics and Global Affairs, University of Toronto; CIGI Chair of Global Security and Professor of Political Science, Balsillie School of International Affairs, University of Waterloo

Main Sponsor

Centre for the Study of Global Japan


Munk School of Global Affairs

Faculty of Arts and Science

2017 JSAC Conference

Asian Institute


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