Welcome to the August 2022 edition of the Science Graduate Career Services newsletter. Each newsletter will collect the latest resources, job opportunities, articles, career development supports and more—all in one easy to find place.

This month we’ll showcase new events & workshops (including one of our own!), transferable skills, and some new opportunities to take advantage of.

A mentor is meeting with his mentee through a virtual video chat

Looking for extra support as a graduate student? Join the Graduate Mentorship Program!

The Graduate Mentorship Program (GMP) is a Faculty of Science-wide initiative connecting McMaster’s science graduate students with faculty and postdoc mentors. A mentorship is an excellent way to

  • receive extra support on personal matters outside of your supervisory relationship

  • receive academic, research and career advice

  • increase your network and develop closer ties to the McMaster community

  • increase social and academic confidence

Joining the program is easy—just visit the GMP website and fill out an application. The GMP is ongoing, so you can join at anytime.

Graduate Mentorship Program website

Events & Workshops

Presenting our first workshop! First Impressions: Resumes for Science Graduate Students

The Faculty of Science Graduate Careers team is happy to present our first workshop: First Impressions - Resumes for Science Graduate Students.

Join us for a 1-day power session where we will go over the keys to resume success and provide expert support on creating the best first impression when applying for a job.

Date: Thursday, August 18th

Session 1 - “Writing for Hiring Audiences” - 10:30AM - 12PM

Session 2 - “Elevating and Translating Your Skills for Hiring Audiences” - 1PM - 2:30PM

Free lunch will be provided for registered participants! Space is limited, so secure your spot today!

Register for First Impressions here!

Keep an eye on the Science Graduate Student Careers website as we continue to announce more Fall programming including

  • an introduction to networking skills

  • Alumni career events

  • and Labour Market Information for graduate science students

Please connect with either Michael Adebo, Graduate Mentorship & Career Coordinator or Tara Zabella, Program Manager, Career Development, with any questions or for further information.

Connect with chemistry industry professionals at the CIC Toronto Career Fair 2022

The Chemical Institute of Canada Toronto Section (CIC Toronto) will be holding its first in-person event since 2019 on Thursday, August 4th.

The CIC Toronto Career Fair connects students with professionals from the chemistry, chemical engineering and chemical technologist fields.

The fair will take place at the North York Civic Centre from 9AM to 4PM. Registration is required for the cost of $5 per person.

Register for the CIC Toronto Career Fair

Explore mindfulness with Summer Reflection Circles

Since the beginning of the spring/summer term, Open Circle has been holding a weekly virtual space for reflection, creative expression and open discussion. There is still time to take advantage of this wonderful opportunity any Wednesday from 4:30 to 5:30PM.

Click here for more Open Circle will be offering more events coming this fall.

Register for a Summer Reflection Circle session here

New Opportunities

Volunteer in your community, acquire teaching skills, become a Patent Agent and more!

Volunteer and meet a potential mentor through The Wisdom Exchange Project

The Wisdom Exchange Project is a unique program based around creating intergenerational social connections and knowledge exchanges. The project pairs graduate students with older adults in the community to develop mutually beneficial companionship.

Past students have noted that the partner they were paired with often acted as a mentor who has helped them grow personally and professionally.

Applications for volunteers are currently open! If interested, visit the link below and sign up as a Trainee Partner and email with questions!

Volunteer for The Wisdom Exchange Project

Missed out the first time? Here’s another chance to earn a MacPherson Teaching and Learning Certificate

Build your teaching skills with the new Teaching and Learning Certificates from the MacPherson Institute.

Starting September 2022, the MacPherson Institute will offer two Teaching and Learning Certificates:

  1. Theory and Inquiry

  2. Practice and Application

Completion of these certificates will provide you with knowledge of different teaching theories, approaches, and guidance in different classroom management skills.

Registration for the fall term opens August 2nd at 8:30AM and is first come, first served. Graduate students can register for Teaching and Learning courses through Mosaic.

Click here for more information

The Michelson Philanthropies & Science Prize for Immunology

The Michelson Philanthropies and Science Prize supports young researchers across disciplines who are investigating vaccines and immunotherapy. Disciplines include computer science, machine learning, neurodegenerative diseases, and much more.

There are 3 prizes to be won—two $10,000 runner-up prizes and one $30,000 grand prize. Research must be conducted in the last 3 years.

Applications will be accepted until October 1, 2022. To apply and view award details, visit the link below.

Award and Application Details

Begin a career as a Patent Agent with Wilson Sonsini

Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati is looking for talented life sciences focused PhD students to join one of their many U.S.-based offices in entry level Patent Agent roles. Patent Agents often have PhD’s in (but not limited to) cellular biology, immunology and computer science.

Wilson Sonsini’s Patent Agent’s help their clients leverage intellectual property and defend against claims in areas like pharmaceuticals, virology and bioinformatics.

Interested in law? Wilson Sonsini supports the career advancement of its Patent Agent through the Patent Agent Law School (PALS) tuition program. PALS provides law school tuition assistance to Patent Agents who would like to become Patent Attorney’s.

Current Patent Agent career opportunities

Transferable Skills

What are they? How do you identify them? And where can they be used?

How do I identify my transferable skills?

There are a two different ways you can begin to identify your transferable skills:

Self-assess your skills

Understand what employers are looking for

A transferable skills cheat sheet…

Ten important transferable skills and examples of how graduate students can demonstrate each (adapted from The University of Alberta - Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research):

How do I use a transferable skill on my resume?

When including transferable skills on your resume or in an interview setting, you will want to briefly highlight how specific skills you have developed relate to a professional environment. Use details (and action verbs!) from a job ad to appeal to the employer.

You can create brief highlights by identifying an action verb, what you did and the outcome or impact.

For example,

If a job ad requires project management skills, you might want to demonstrate your thesis or dissertation management skills

  • You may have planned experiments and executed them for a goal that you have determined

  • You may have had to manage a budget so that funds lasted the duration of the project

  • You may have delegated tasks to other students who were working on your project to ensure its success

If a job ad requires oral communication skills, you can demonstrate the high level of communication required of a masters or PhD student

  • Highlight times you have partnered or corresponded with other people in your group, your supervisory committee, or students you supervise

  • Highlight your oral presentation skills—have you had to communicate complex ideas in a way that can be easily understood?

For more transferable skills used by scientists in industry, check out this article from Cheeky Scientist—7 Transferable Skills That Recruiters Are Looking For.

Take the time to think about and break down your past experiences into transferable skills. You might be surprised at just how many transferable skills you have!