Career and Professional Development

At U-M, there is a wealth of resources around career and professional development available both to doctoral students and postdoctoral fellows in bioscience disciplines. These resources are supported at numerous levels throughout the university:

The Center for Research on Learning and Teaching  is supported by the Provost and offers workshops for PhD students and postdoctoral fellows that cover a variety of topics, such as preparing future faculty, college science teaching, and how to write a statement of teaching philosophy.

The Graduate School supports an Office of Professional Development, which creates and hosts programming for students and postdocs on how to be successful in their professional development and as they transition into desired career paths. Activities focus on three key areas: core skill development, career exploration, and developing job search skills.

The Medical School Office of Graduate and Postdoctoral Studies supports career and professional development for PhD students admitted via the Program in Biomedical Sciences (PIBS) and postdoctoral fellows from across campus. For PhD students, career and professional development begins as soon as they arrive on campus. All first-year students are required to take PIBS 800 in the fall term, which covers a variety of topics for a successful graduate career, including the need to engage in professional development, leadership skills and grantsmanship. For postdocs, the medical school maintains institutional subscriptions to online resources, such as the National Postdoctoral Association and Versatile PhD, and provides links to Pathways to Science and the American Association for the Advancement of Science resource, MyIDP. Professional development events supported and coordinated by the medical school are advertised to doctoral students and all postdocs via the weekly Friday Professional Development Newsletter.

Finally, faculty in the Department of Pharmacology  teach the grant writing course, Pharm 502: Introduction to Scientific Communication/Grant Writing, for predoctoral and postdoctoral fellows from across campus. This course introduces participants to essential scientific communication skills, beginning with the relatively easy task of learning to search the literature and ending with writing an NIH style grant application. All participants are also required to give a short seminar.