Communications Program Doctoral Student Coaching
The Wharton Communication Program helps Wharton students become more effective communicators. In addition to teaching courses and workshops for MBA, Executive MBA and undergraduate students, we coach Wharton faculty who want to improve their teaching. For doctoral students, our help focuses on research presentations and job talks.
Each year we provide the following support to doctoral students from all departments:
- First-year speaking workshop (typically in September)
- Research paper presentations (typically 3rd and 4th year papers)
- Dissertation proposal presentations
- Job talk presentations
In addition, we occasionally help doctoral students with job interviews.
A key part of our coaching philosophy is the use of a robust feedback system. We execute this in two ways:
- Video recording of every presentation
- Written evaluation forms completed by faculty and other doctoral students. This form is particularly important because it often highlights unanswered questions raised by faculty members.
Typically, our coaches meet with students twice for each presentation: once before the presentation to review the structure of the talk and slide deck, and again after the presentation to review the video and faculty/doctoral student feedback.
For questions or assistance please contact Antionnette McDermott (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Catherine Hueston (email@example.com)
One-on-one writing support and services are available to all Wharton Doctoral students at no charge. Our experienced academic editor, Lynn Selhat, can help you to:
- Structure the Paper: creating a logical flow, organizing the introduction
- Engage the Reader: motivating your paper, positioning your work in the larger literature, identifying your contributions
- Improve Your Writing Style: cutting to be more succinct, tightening for better flow, editing for more active and clear language
Writing services are available at any point in the process: outline phase, draft, or rewriting an existing paper.
Lynn can be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Digital and real-world resources everyone should know about
Career Services subscribes to a variety of digital resources for the benefit of the students and postdocs we serve.
- National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity: The NCFDD is an independent professional development, training, and mentoring community for graduate students, post-docs, and faculty members. Resources for graduate students and post-docs include webinars, courses, discussion forums, and other resources on topics ranging from preparing for the academic job market to crafting book, grant, and fellowship proposals. Penn is an institutional member, so students can claim their institutional sub-account membership at no cost. To do so, click “Register Now” under “Institutional Sub-Account Membership” and be sure to register with your Penn email.
- Versatile PhD: The Versatile PhD is a web-based platform for PhD students and postdocs in STEM, Humanities, and Social Science fields to explore the full range of career fields that value the PhD experience, and the skills and knowledge associated with doctoral education. With information about common career paths followed by PhDs, a complete online course for exploring career options (Options 4 Success), samples of application materials that PhDs used to successfully obtain non-faculty roles in different fields and industries, and jobs, the Versatile PhD can help PhDs develop and demonstrate their versatility as professionals. Students should register for a free account here https://versatilephd.com making sure to list University of Pennsylvania as their doctoral institution during the registration process in order to gain access to the premium content.
- Imagine PhD: This tool has been specifically designed for PhD students in humanities and social science fields, and is a fantastic way to assess you own values, interests, and skills, and to use this information to help you to explore the full range of career options that value an advanced degree, and where you can find many PhDs working in roles that they find intellectually satisfying.
- myIDP: myIDP provides a tool to help STEM students/postdocs to examine their skills, interests, and values as a way to explore a list of more than 20 scientific career paths. myIDP also has a useful tool for setting strategic goals for the coming year, with optional reminders to keep students on track, together with articles and resources to guide them through the process. For students in the chemical sciences, there is also ChemIDP.
- InterviewStream: Get access to over 7000 questions for all career fields and industries (including academic/faculty interviews) by accessing InterviewStream – an online, mock interview resource to help you to practice interview questions from the comfort of your own computer.
- Carpe Careers: A weekly blog written by PhD/postdoc career advisors from academic institutions across the US who share optimistic, actionable advice on how to make the most of the PhD experience.
- Academic Job Search Handbook: The comprehensive guide to finding a faculty position in any discipline. We can provide this book to students at a discounted rate of $10. Let us know if your department wants to purchase a larger of number of these for your students and we can work with you to make this happen.
- The Grant Advisor: Designed exclusively for U.S. colleges and universities, The Grant Advisor provides searchable databases of grant and fellowship opportunities organized by discipline and populations.
- LinkedIn – Penn Alumni: LinkedIn remains one of the most effective tools for finding Penn alumni in a wide range of career fields, including in faculty roles. Click on this link to explore the 150,000 Penn alumni and current students featured in an interactive, filterable and searchable table. Students can set up an appointment with a career advisor to learn how to take advantage of this resource, as well as the searchable QuakerNet database of Penn alumni.
- InterSECT Job Simulations: An online platform that allows PhD-level scientists and humanists, regardless of professional stage, to explore future career options. These true-to-life job simulation exercises can help individuals consider their professional interests and skills, determine how their interests and skills translate to potential careers, and discover additional career options?
- CareerShift: CareerShift offers a comprehensive online resource, designed to support the #1 request of job seekers: an easy to use website to conduct and organize their job search. With CareerShift, you can: 1) Search, store & record job listings at all publically posted websites, company websites, and newspapers. 2) Set job alerts. 3) Get inside contact information immediately, including email addresses, for millions of companies, even alumni, then save and manage your lists. 4) Upload/ Copy and Paste as many targeted resumes and cover letters needed or upload your current documents. 5) Create personal marketing campaigns, including unlimited resumes and cover letters easily, and save them to access, print or e-mail. 6) Manage your confidential CareerShift account securely from any computer 24/7, to update & maintain your organized and recorded job search. CareerShift is free for Penn graduate students and postdocs to use.
- Canvas course on networking, effective resumes, and interviewing: Encourage your students to take advantage of this course on Canvas to get a solid foundation for their networking, resumes, and interviewing. This course focuses primarily on expanded careers beyond faculty roles.
Student Life Resources
Wharton Doctoral Student Event Planning Guide
To help you prepare and plan events, we’ve created the attached Wharton Doctoral Student Event Planning Guide. Inside you’ll find information on vendors, expenses, reservations and more. We hope this is a useful resource! If there’s any information that you think should be added or common questions that are not easily located, please let us know as we hope to better streamline event processes for our students.
The University requires that purchases are made via a purchase order (PO) or budget code. This is a benefit for your groups as well for several reasons including that expenses will be paid up front, eligible for tax exemption and charges are automatically tracked through the financial office. Only if there are no other payment options available can a reimbursement be approved.
Please check with our office prior to making purchases including vendors, caterers, space or rentals.
Graduate Student Center Grants
Graduate Student Center – A great resource for graduate students across Penn. GSC also offers various Health Insurance and Dependent Care grants for PhDs.