5 things grad students and postdocs should do right now to build successful academic careers

by Chava Nerenberg, Graduate Programming Assistant
Wednesday, October 21, 2020 8:00 AM

Check out this blog post from Beyond the Professoriate titled "5 Things Grad Students and Postdocs Should Do Right Now to Build Successful Academic Careers." Read on for a short summary of the topics covered and click here to see the full post!

1) Build a PhD mentor network

We tend to associate networking with non-academic spaces, where job searchers meet at events and exchange business cards. Yet networking is so much more than that, and you should be actively growing your professional network while in graduate school. Learn how a network of mentors can help you build your career.

2) Get feedback early and often

Imposter syndrome is real. It can be intimidating and scary to ask people to read your writing. Asking for feedback early in the writing process can take your work in a better direction. But how do you handle (possibly negative!) feedback once you've gotten it?

3) Hone your research and writing skills

We often hear that publishing, securing grants, and finding postdocs and fellowships are important facets of any successful academic career. But how do you approach these tasks when you haven't done them before?

4) Strive for progress, not perfection

Words to live by, eh? The need for perfection in academia is toxic, not to mention draining. It can also interfere with your ability to manage your time and productivity, creating an unhealthy balance in your work and life.

5) Work/life priorities derive from purpose

There are so many competing demands on our time: research, teaching, applying for grants, not to mention trying to sleep, eat, and exercise! So how do you prioritize your work so that you're building a successful academic career? First, you have to figure out what success looks like to you!

Read the full post here

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