Career Planning

It is difficult to enjoy your career journey if you have not defined your career destination. In order to achieve a successful and fulfilling career, you need to set long-term goals. In order to accomplish those long-term goals, you need to start with short-term objectives. But prior to any of these, self-reflection is essential.

The path to a successful career is defined by three steps:

  1. Conduct a self-assessment: Take inventory of the interests and values that define your career satisfaction, and the skills you possess or those you wish to develop.
  2. Explore your career options: Evaluate the careers that match your interests and values, and the skills needed to obtain these careers.
  3. Organize your job search: Identify jobs for which you wish to apply and the requirements to do so.

Here are some resources to help you with each of these steps.


Career Exploration

Read about careers

The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs curates a lending library of electronic and print career-related books, many focused on specific career paths. Additionally, the online myIDP tool from Science Careers contains a comprehensive library of articles dedicated to specific careers.

Conduct informational interviews

Only so much information can be garnered from a book or job description. To learn more, conduct an informational interview - an informal conversation with a person who is already successful in a career that interests you and who can provide firsthand information.

Other resources

Here are some additional career exploration resources

Job Search

There exist many vertical search engines that focus solely on employment. These search engines aggregate job advertisements from thousands of websites, including job boards, professional associations, recruiters, and company career pages. A few of the more general job search engines include:

A few postdoc-specific job search engines include:

For more in-depth job searching strategies and resources, please visit the Career Development module for postdocs in Sakai