Skip navigation


By JENNIFER POLK | June 22 2015

Tom Westerman earned his PhD in history from the University of Connecticut in 2014. He is now an upper school history teacher at Porter-Gaud School in Charleston, SC. He teaches a variety of courses in World History and United States History and also assists with the school’s Model United Nations Club. What did you hope […]

By JENNIFER POLK | June 15 2015

One of my intentions for the summer is to step up my networking. I want to reach out to more people, both those I know and those I don’t yet know, to have conversations about their work and mine. I’d like to know more about the professionals who work in and around universities, especially as […]

By JENNIFER POLK | May 25 2015

I co-hosted an online conference earlier this month, with Maren Wood: The 2nd Annual Beyond the Professoriate. What fun! What learning! The conference reaffirmed for me that PhDs working in non-faculty positions are enjoying all kinds of wonderful, fascinating, and meaningful careers. One highlight for me was Elizabeth Keenan speaking about how, as a real […]

By JENNIFER POLK | April 22 2015

My conference is coming up fast! Beyond the Professoriate will bring together 25 PhDs from a wide variety of disciplines – engineering to ethnomusicology, genetics to German – who are working in a variety of fields. The two-day conference will be presented entirely online. All are welcome to register and attend. On Career Day, Saturday, 2 […]

By JENNIFER POLK | April 08 2015

Raj Dhiman completed his PhD in bio-organic chemistry at the University of Toronto. He is currently the sales training manager for Vicinity, a division of Rogers Communications that focuses on customer loyalty and marketing solutions for small businesses. Connect with him on LinkedIn. What did you hope for in terms of employment while completing your […]

By JENNIFER POLK | April 01 2015

Viviane Callier earned her PhD in biology from Duke University. She’s currently a science writer at the National Cancer Institute and freelances on the side. Find her online here and follow her on Twitter @vcallier. What did you hope for in terms of employment as you completed your PhD? When I finished my PhD, I […]

By JENNIFER POLK | March 25 2015

Nicholas Dion earned his PhD in religious studies from the University of Toronto. He is currently senior coordinator, research and programs at the Higher Education Quality Council of Ontario (HEQCO), an independent research and advisory body of the government of Ontario that conducts and commissions research on various topics related to the province’s postsecondary landscape. […]

By JENNIFER POLK | March 18 2015

Jennifer Polk explores how Dr. Tauber went from full-time professor to helping graduate programs increase retention and diversity.

By JENNIFER POLK | March 11 2015

Canada’s two largest universities — University of Toronto and York University — are affected by strikes. Last week, first graduate student teaching assistants and course instructors struck at U of T, followed closely by all contract teaching assistants and instructors at York University. (York’s CUPE 3903 Unit 2 — non-student contract faculty members — ratified […]

By JENNIFER POLK | March 03 2015

Kara Santokie earned her PhD in political science from the University of Toronto. Formerly a professor, she is now director of Toronto Women’s City Alliance, where she works towards the inclusion of women’s voices in municipal politics. Her work has led her to be featured in the Toronto Star, NOW Magazine, CTV News, CP24, and […]

By JENNIFER POLK | February 19 2015

The Unruly PhD: Doubts, Detours, Departures, & Other Success Stories by Rebecca Peabody is a collection of first-hand accounts and interviews with people who’ve travelled in, through, and beyond graduate school. After a brief introduction by Dr. Peabody, an art history PhD who works at the Getty Research Institute, the book is divided into three […]

By JENNIFER POLK | February 05 2015

Jennifer Polk explains why PhDs should sign up, either as a participant or as a speaker.

By JENNIFER POLK | January 27 2015

How he went from a PhD in neuroscience to working with autistic elementary school children.

By JENNIFER POLK | January 22 2015

Jennifer Polk lists her favourite coping mechanisms for when you are waiting for the phone to ring about that academic job you applied for.

By JENNIFER POLK | January 14 2015

“When did you decide to leave academia?” This question, or some version of it — “How did you know that you didn’t want to be a professor?” for example — is one I’m regularly asked. It comes up in conversation, on Twitter, or when I’m on a careers panel. It’s a fair inquiry, and the […]

By JENNIFER POLK | December 19 2014

Instead of making New Year’s resolutions, Jennifer Polk reflects back on what she did and didn’t do this past year.

By JENNIFER POLK | December 10 2014

Jennifer Polk looks at how Nadia Jaber took her disdain for the academic lifestyle and turned it into a solution for other PhDs.

By JENNIFER POLK | November 25 2014

The other day I read a story of waiting and hoping. It was the story of a woman, a PhD and an adjunct professor, who works at an institution she hopes would one day grant her a permanent professorship. I found myself getting mad. But mad at whom, mad at what? At her, the institution, […]

By JENNIFER POLK | November 11 2014

Melissa Dalgleish is the research officer in the faculty of graduate studies and a PhD candidate in English at York University. She researches Canadian literature and graduate education, professionalization, and reform. When she’s not working on her dissertation, you can find her writing for Hook & Eye and #Alt-Academy, where she’s the co-editor of Graduate […]

By JENNIFER POLK | November 06 2014

Last week a Twitter contact asked me, “Would you ever go back to academia if your dream job opened up?” We both knew he meant a university faculty position, tenure-track. We knew this because talk of a “dream job” is common among graduate students and PhDs on the academic job market. For me, now, the […]