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SGSI 2016: Jumpstart Your Academic Job Search

Are you about to enter the job market for a faculty position? Get a jumpstart on preparing yourself and your application materials. This course is practical and experiential, involving practicing and editing. We will work on both written and oral parts of your job search preparation, including CVs, cover letters, research and teaching statements, and the job talk. Experts from across Stanford will present. An interdisciplinary class of peers will support you.

Monday, Sept. 12 – Thursday, Sept. 15, 9 AM – 5 PM; Friday, Sept. 16, 9 – 12 PM

(Coffee will be available at 8:30 AM)


  • Chris Golde, PhD, special projects, Office of the Vice Provost for Graduate Education
  • Laura Dominguez Chan, assistant dean of Career Education and associate director of Career Communities–PhDs/Postdocs in Arts & Humanities, BEAM, Stanford Career Education
  • Arne Bakker, PhD, assistant director of Career Communities–PhDs & Postdocs in Natural & Social Sciences, BEAM, Stanford Career Education

Audience & Capacity

Open to advanced doctoral students and postdoctoral scholars in any discipline who plan to enter the faculty job market in 2016-2017. Space is limited to 60.


By participating fully in this course, you will:

  • Understand the academic hiring and job search process
  • Start drafting your job application materials
  • Read job announcements and assess their fit with your values, skills, and career goals
  • Identify the steps you need to take after the class to enter the current academic job search cycle
  • Know Stanford’s resources to help you during your job search


This course is a systematic preview of all aspects of the faculty job search so that you will be well prepared to embark on the academic job search immediately. Participation is limited to those doctoral students and postdocs planning to enter the job market (even in a limited way) during the 2016-17 academic year.

"Jumpstart was a huge lifesaver. I would have been floundering on my own. The resources are great, and the sessions on what to expect in the interview and negotiation are not found elsewhere." -Lindsay, PhD candidate in social sciences, SGSI 2015 participant

This will be highly experiential and workshop focused. The schedule includes these topics:

  • An overview of the job search process
  • The landscape of higher education in the US, including different types of colleges and universities, and how faculty work varies among them
  • Identifying job listings and assessing values and fit
  • Written parts of an application. Time will be spent drafting, editing and/or reviewing: CVs, cover letters, teaching statements, and research statements. We will share information about other written elements: diversity statements and a professional web presence.
  • Verbal parts of an application. We will practice interviews. We will share information about job talks and teaching demonstrations.
  • Negotiating terms of a job offer
  • Tools for managing stress
  • Developing a plan for assembling a portfolio of materials and managing the logistics of the application process
  • Panel of faculty who have served on hiring committees
  • Panel of recent job seekers
  • Dedicated time for working on materials with coaching available

“Jumpstart gave me the dedicated and secure time and space to really think about what I want for my future and how to achieve it. With the support and dedication of the leadership team, I was able to ask my questions and truly get the guidance I was needing.” Danit, postdoctoral scholar in medicine, SGSI 2015 participant

Note: If you are trying to decide whether a faculty career is right for you, we recommend SGSI 2016: Designing the Professional.

SUNet ID required to log in. The priority application deadline is Sunday, May 8.

Resource Type: 
Course or Workshop
Target Audience: 
All Graduate Students, Doctoral Students, Postdoctoral Scholars
Time Commitment: 
Learning Experience: