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Professional Development Grant Recipients: 2017 Funding Year

Award announcement

Biology

The Biology Women in Science Committee will host a workshop series in April 2017 focused on identifying and mitigating implicit bias in the workplace. The series will include an educational lecture during the Monday biology seminar series featuring an invited guest speaker with expertise in bias-related research followed by two activity-based workshops during lunchtime on Tuesday and Wednesday. The first workshop will focus on identifying implicit biases using an online learning tool, and the second workshop will include an activity to replace biased or doubt-raising language in professional materials (cover letters, letters of recommendation) as well as a Q&A panel with our guest speaker and 2-3 faculty, postdocs, or staff from the biology department. 

Biomedical Engineering

The Professional Development Grant will enable the BME PhD Peer Mentoring Program to promote proactive career-based mentoring relationships, as well as to introduce mindfulness as a healthy, effective work habit. The program's goals include developing well-rounded professionals, enhancing the first-year experience, and fostering meaningful connections in BME. With funding from the Professional Development Grant, the Peer Mentoring Program will provide lunch vouchers during Spring 2017 to encourage continued meetings between mentors and mentees in a semester that sees an increase in responsibility and a drop-off in early support mechanisms for first-year students. Professional Development Grant funding will also support a mindfulness workshop by Dr. Holly Rogers in April 2017 open to all BME faculty, post-doctoral fellows, and graduate students.

Chemistry

The Duke Graduate Chemistry Council (GCC) seeks funding to continue the successful programming of non-academic career development that has been implemented over the past two years.  Our event programming exposes STEM graduate students to non-academic career paths and provides multiple networking opportunities with professionals outside traditional academic or industry research fields.  These programs include a main event in the spring, Non-Traditional Careers for STEM PhDs, as well as a year-round monthly series, Coffee Breaks with PhDs.

Classical Studies

Graduate students from the Classical Studies department are hosting a pedagogy-focused professional development colloquium in Spring Semester 2017. The colloquium will bring together two faculty members from outside Duke (from both a research university and a teaching-focused institution), faculty from inside Duke, and graduate students in Classical Studies and related fields. The objective is to provide a setting for graduate students to critically and communally discuss, with faculty at Duke and other kinds of institutions, best practices in teaching Classical Studies within the contemporary university and college. Since Classical Studies courses ask students to learn languages and to read and write about ancient literature, history, and archaeology, we will address our objective through faculty-led workshops on language instruction, writing pedagogy, and curriculum development. Our intention is that graduate students in Classical Studies and related fields will come out of the workshop better equipped to teach and to talk about their work as scholar-teachers, whether they seek work within or beyond the academy after graduation.

Electrical and Computer Engineering

As part of its ongoing attention to matters of diversity and inclusion, Duke ECE Graduate Program would like to create a program that allows underrepresented minority and female students an opportunity to interact with a support network of peers and faculty on a regular basis. The goal of the program is an increased sense of community and enhanced professional development for students, ultimately resulting in lower attrition rates for URM and female students and increasing diversity among the student population.

Pathology

As a committee composed of staff, faculty, alumni, and students, we propose to develop a mentoring and professional development program with events that focus on building and strengthening the community of pathology students, staff and faculty and providing networking and development opportunities for PhD students with pathology graduate alumni while teaching transferable skills. In order to launch an effective longitudinal program we are applying for the 2017 Professional Development Grant as partial funding for the major events in the first year of the initiative. Specifically, We plan to use the funds to cover expenses for a Research Triangle Park networking and business etiquette dinner in which current Pathology students will benefit from interactions with alumni mentors. 

Philosophy

The Department of Philosophy will invite speakers with PhDs in philosophy who lead successful careers outside academia for an event focused on pursuing non-academic careers. Through a day of panel discussion, talks and workshops, graduate students from philosophy and the humanities will have the opportunity to engage with guests who have leveraged their graduate education to meet the demands of a non-academic job market.

Political Science

Women in Political Science (WiPS) aims to supplement professional training of women in the applied social sciences by facilitating networking, career skills, and mentorship among early-career women. We do so by hosting mentorship workshops  to connect student with female scholars and alumnae outside academia in order to facilitate the transfer of strategies to negotiate career issues that disproportionately affect women.  Our Duke-hosted events are open to students and postdocs in applied social science fields throughout the Triangle.

Romance Studies

This proposal seeks funding for a series of writing workshops aimed at graduate students who are non-native speaker of English (English as a Second Language - ESL) in the humanities and social sciences at Duke University. The workshops invite ESL graduate students to strengthen their academic writing skills and raise the quality of their submission materials for job market applications inside and outside academia. The aim of these workshops is to give the ESL graduate students a concrete professional development experience tailored to their specific needs by helping them to improve their English writing skills and craft a winning academic or non-academic job application or a grant proposal.