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Shh! Don’t Tell My Advisor I Want A Non-Academic Job

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Author: Charlotte Anthony | Category: Career Development | March 24, 2015

The Chronicle of Higher Education just published, “Pushing for Culture Change, Ph.D.’s Explore Careers Beyond Academe” which highlighted the growing presence of graduate students looking of jobs beyond academia.

The article also mentions that there is a stigma that persists for students who don’t pursue academic jobs.

David Aguilar, a graduate student in the Integrated Biomedical Sciences (IBMS) program, recently attended a Career Advisory Council workshop focused on careers at teaching institutions and agreed.

“When someone finds out that you are in grad school, they assume that you are going to be a professor,” Aguilar said. "So it’s important to see people from all kinds of industries and even people in different academic settings to give us a feel of what’s out there."

In a recent lecture by Dr. Andrea Giuffrida, vice president of research ad interim at UT Health Science Center, he mentioned that changes in retirement laws have impacted the number of academic jobs available.

“Before 1994, there were no faculty over 70 and less than 13 percent were over 60,” said Dr. Giuffrida. “In 2006, the law changed and now over 5 percent are over 70 and 18 percent are greater than 60. This means that there are less new spaces for younger faculty.”

As a result of the lack of academic jobs, it is important for our students to learn about careers outside of academia.

One way that our students are able to learn about careers is through the Career Advisory Council which is organized through the Office of Career Development with the facilitation of Dr. Teresa Evans. The council comprises of leaders in the biomedical science community of San Antonio from different fields including industry, technology transfer, military and even faculty from both research and teaching backgrounds. So far, the Career Advisory Council has had workshops on careers in industry/entrepreneurship and teaching institutions.

Another important step essential to a successful career is career planning. Dr. Evans, a certified career development facilitator and Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences alum is available to schedule one-on-one career planning meetings. Find out more about career planning meetings here

Dr. Evans recently met with Chancellor Bill McRaven and spoke to him about the work of the Office of Career Development.

"As I travel in my work, I am proud to tell the UT story. Meeting the chancellor gave my narrative a deeper and more personal dimension," Dr. Evans said. "It was also great to hear that he supported our efforts from the UT System level." 

Please join us for the next Career Advisory Council workshop on Friday, April 20 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the Dolph Briscoe Jr. Library Room 2.030 featuring Dr. Melanie Paquette, Dr. David Price, Dr. Doug Frantz, and Dr. Stan McHardy. It will be focused on careers at pharmaceutical companies and industry. Register here.

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