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CAREERS CAFÉ

By UA/AU | February 26 2014

This is a reprinted guest post from Christoper Buddle. Check out his blog, Arthropod Ecology. I’m continually fascinated by how people deal with to-do lists, projects, contacts, and emails. All of these things relate to the broader issues around time management and productivity. If you can ‘take control’ of time management, I believe this is […]

By LIZ KOBLYK | January 31 2014

It seems that, when it comes to making choices, choosing what’s “good enough” is more useful than seeking what’s rationally the best option. According to one group of researchers (PDF), now old-fashioned theories of rational choice rely on the myth that people are rational choosers [who] go through life with all their options arrayed before […]

By LIZ KOBLYK | January 07 2014

‘Twas the season. We’ve just passed through that time after Hallowe’en, when fairy lights and nylon-bearded Santas magically appear. It’s also a pretty popular time of year to be self-critical, what with impending New Year’s resolutions that focus on undoing flaws, and questions from relatives about progress at work or school. The combination of a […]

By LIZ KOBLYK | December 04 2013

While the rewards of work can certainly outshine the challenges, sometimes the challenges take centre stage. This week, a normally calm, philosophical friend put a giant mock grin on her face and asked, in a game show host voice, “How many people am I disappointing right now?” In her case, the real answer was probably […]

By LIZ KOBLYK | October 28 2013

If you’re lucky, you have mentors. They may have come into that role officially – as supervisors or dissertation committee members. They may be personal Yodas you’ve picked up unofficially – that grad student whose unflappability you’d like to cultivate, or the colleague who knows how to make meetings useful. The balance of giving and receiving […]

By LIZ KOBLYK | October 04 2013

Careers Café has recently had a fork-in-the-road theme, so – what the heck – I’m adding another fork and a personal post. I recently had to ask myself the sorts of questions that I prefer asking clients: about what matters to me, what my definition of success is, how I’ll find meaning in work, and […]

By JO VANEVERY | September 30 2013

In my last post, I talked about beginnings, the importance of looking up at the road ahead and then taking the small steps to move forward in that direction. Implicit in that post is the sense that as we walk down a road we come to crossroads, forks, and half-visible trails through the underbrush. At […]

By LIZ KOBLYK | September 03 2013

Talking about career chaos usually doesn’t win you any points with people in the midst of career exploration. But thinking about how to make use of chaos is a smart idea. You don’t need a robust, scholarly understanding of chaos theory in order to have a useful framework for thinking about careers. You just need the […]

By NICOLA KOPER | August 21 2013

I’ve had a great time working on this blog for the last two years, but it’s finally time for me to say goodbye. My reason for leaving will probably resonate with many of you. One of my first posts was called “just say no”, and while that post was aimed at urging young profs not […]

By JO VANEVERY | August 12 2013

This is a post for those readers who are starting something new this fall: a PhD program a tenure-track job a new role like director of graduate studies, head of department, etc. Although you may have officially started already, it is the beginning of the fall semester that will feel like the real beginning. Stop […]

By LIZ KOBLYK | August 06 2013

Ah, it had to happen sooner or later. Brazen Careerist founder, Penelope Trunk, was eventually going to take grad school down a peg. Given her typically provocative style, she was unlikely to say that it’s a wise investment. She’s challenged the wisdom of pursuing grad school in the past on her blog, but using more measured […]

By JO VANEVERY | July 22 2013

Which journal should you publish your academic article in? Jo Van Every tells you which factors to consider.

By LIZ KOBLYK | July 15 2013

If you’ve read anything about job searching, you’ve heard the truisms about taking an assertive approach, selling yourself to employers, and treating the job search like a full-time job. The overall gist is that you need to be assertive. And that’s true. You do need to be able and willing to express what you can […]

By JO VANEVERY | July 02 2013

We are now well into the summer. For most academics, your work rhythm changes substantially. Summer is when you anticipate really diving into your research. Longer field work is possible. Or, lengthy visits to archives. You can really get into flow with your writing. You can catch up on some of your reading. You have […]

By LIZ KOBLYK | June 26 2013

For reasons best known to the gods of coincidence, I’ve recently been in several formal networking situations. In those situations, some people have used pitches, and others have not. Here is what I have noticed about pitches: 1)   If the conversation is going to last more than 10 minutes, it might just make sense to […]

By NICOLA KOPER | June 19 2013

I’ve had a few reminders lately that university students represent a particular subset of the population. Like most of their professors, a lot of our students are type-A, hard-working, driven and perhaps tend towards overachievement. Traits that most of us can sympathize with. While these personality traits may well have brought them to their current […]

By JO VANEVERY | June 10 2013

Your initial orientation to the job search is personal. Will you like it? Will this job give you the skills and experience you need to move forward in your career? Will it pay enough? And so on … Once you’ve decided to apply, your perspective needs to change. As with any writing or presentation, you […]

By LIZ KOBLYK | June 03 2013

I just came back from the Education at Work conference, which wrapped up with an employer panel. I like employer panels – they give me a chance to test out whether I actually know what I’m talking about, or whether I’ve developed an artificial, Disney-esque view of the way one goes about finding a job. […]

By NICOLA KOPER | May 27 2013

In my last blog, I talked about the lengths of graduate students’ programs. I noted that often, longer times to completion are in the best interests of the graduate students, and we shouldn’t try to shorten all completion times regardless of individual circumstances. In general, I still think this way. However, I also appreciate the […]

By JO VANEVERY | May 21 2013

In my last post, I suggested that you don’t have to figure out what to do with your life. I want to explore that idea a bit more. As Barrie Thorne noted back in 1987, we often look at children as who they are becoming rather than as who they are in a specific time and […]