How to map your career choices How to map your career choices Driving Force March 5, 2015 These days, it can be very anxiety-inducing to face the job market, either inside or outside of academia. As STEM professionals, we have a decided advantage in proceeding through what can seem like muddy waters because of our well-honed analytical skills.  However, we often do not transfer our training to those less well-quantifiable fields, such as job hunting. I’d like to offer a few graph-based methodologies to help with some of the grayer areas—weighing the risks and rewards associated with various career paths. Untethering science careers from the research frontier Untethering science careers from the research frontier Driving Force March 4, 2015 When seeking guidance on graduate education as preparation for careers in science, there is an awful lot to take into account—both theoretically and empirically. Consulting: Put Your Expertise to Work for You Podcast January 00, 1970 Consulting is a popular alternative career for STEM professionals at any stage of their career. If you think you have what it takes to be a consultant but aren’t completely sure it’s for you and/or how to go about it, then watch this webinar. STEM mentors face difficulties in directing students toward uneven playing fields Driving Force February 10, 2015 Parents, teachers, coaches, and mentors direct talent. They steer students toward certain pursuits, and by omission, ignorance or choice, away from others. This makes sense, but sometimes ... nonsense. The problem is that students are moving targets. They mature at different rates, change interests, and are influenced by the social and mass media. For every high school athlete shooting for the NBA or NFL, or "American Idol" contestant shooting for recording fame, a minuscule fraction achieve that particular dream.   Are academies destined to be participatory or exclusionary pools? Driving Force February 2, 2015 It's the season for movie awards. Diversity, or the lack thereof in the Oscar nominations, has made headlines yet again. There are no persons of color in 20 acting categories. Coincidence? A statistical anomaly? Regardless, questions are being raised, and they are not unrelated to the issue of recognition in science. Q&A with David Burgess: NIH National Research Mentoring Network Driving Force January 13, 2015 In October 2014, NIH announced $31 million in awards “to develop new approaches to engage researchers from underrepresented backgrounds” in preparation for scientific careers. One of the awards, implemented in response to NIH’s Advisory Committee to the Director’s Working Group on Diversity in the Biomedical Research Workforce, established the NIH National Research Mentoring Network, or NRMN. AAAS MemberCentral blogger Daryl E. Yet another committee says postdoc training needs overhaul Yet another committee says postdoc training needs overhaul Driving Force January 6, 2015 A new report issued by the National Academies details the continuing problems with postdoctoral training and issues some blunt recommendations for finally changing the status quo. A community college antidote to African American male underachievement A community college antidote to African American male underachievement Driving Force December 2, 2014 The headline caught my eye: Are African American women overachieving in engineering? Some persuasive undergraduate-degree data cited in the article support the contention, but send a dangerous message. The danger is that something so positive suggests that no problem exists. It can breed complacency by those for whom diversity is but one of several “priorities.” The real problem may be that it diverts attention from the critical issue that African American men are underachieving in science. Indeed, they represent two of every five African Americans attending college and only one of every three completing an engineering degree. Women’s participation in engineering is so striking, countering other minority trends, that we should celebrate. But universities must emulate the lead of employers, redoubling their efforts to enroll and graduate students of color in all STEM disciplines. Jumpstart Your Job Search by Power Networking Podcast January 00, 1970 You’re probably familiar with the phrase, “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know.” Well, the current job market is no exception. In any job search, whether you’re a civil engineer or physics postdoc, having know-how and connections are important to finding a great new job. 5 ways advisors can help students prepare for diverse careers 5 ways advisors can help students prepare for diverse careers Driving Force December 3, 2014 In many scientific disciplines, the majority of graduate students will not become professors. While the onus is on individual trainees to navigate their own careers, there are steps that faculty mentors can take to help prepare trainees for career flexibility. Here are five ways that faculty advisors can assist students in career development.