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About the Graduate School's Professional and Career Development Services

To maximize their employment opportunities upon completing their degree, doctoral students must actively engage in their own professional development and career planning at all stages of their program. Earning a doctorate at The University of Maryland develops expertise and skills that can be used in many different career paths in academiaprivate industrynonprofit organizations, and the federal government.

Professional and career development opportunities are numerous at UMD and doctoral students should participate in these at all stages of their program. Academic departments, colleges, and schools, The Graduate School and University Career Center & The President's Promise organize events where you can learn about different careers and industries, expand your network, and add to your skillset.

Getting Started

  • Doctoral students are strongly encouraged to develop an Individual Development Plan (IDP) during their first semester. The IDP is an evolving document that includes steps you will take each semester to achieve your academic and professional goals.  To get started on your IDP, download the printable IDP template for current doctoral students or a similar template for postdocs
  • Ask your advisor and more senior doctoral students in your department about the types of professional development events offered by your program, college, or school. Mark these events on your calendar.
  • Familiarize yourself with the information on Graduate School doctoral career development semester-wide calendar and the career events offered by the University Career Center & The President's Promise.   
  • Take 10 minutes to activate your free Handshake account. 
  • After logging in, explore and register for upcoming career fairs, panels, and workshops for doctoral students and postdocs through the Career Center’s events calendar.
  • Learn more about various career planning and job search topics.
  • After taking these basic steps to familiarize yourself with on-campus resources, schedule an individual appointment through your primary career center.
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