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Professional Development Series

Events in the Professional Development Series can help students evaluate and prepare for the range of career options open to master's- and PhD-prepared professionals. This series is designed to broaden graduate students’ career perspectives and develop competencies in communication, self-awareness, professional adaptability, leadership, and professionalism.

Programming is offered on a two-year cycle and change each semester; over the course of two years, the series includes opportunities to learn about career paths in each of the five major career sectors available to alumni of The Graduate School: academia, business, entrepreneurship, government, and nonprofit.

Summer 2021 Events

Summer Kickoff Series

Prepare to make progress on your professional development this summer! Any Graduate School student who attends at least three of the five Summer Kickoff Series workshops can earn a free code to complete the CliftonStrengths assessment and identify your top five strengths as a way to continue building your self-awareness and communication skills.

Summer Kickoff Series graphic with workshop titles and dates


  • Monday, May 10, 2021
    2:00 pm to 2:45 pm

    What Can I Do with a Graduate Degree? Identifying My Transferable Skills

    This workshop will help you identify the transferable skills you’ve already developed in graduate school or your postdoc experience, brainstorm opportunities to continue growing your skills, and connect with tools to help you plan for further development.

  • Tuesday, May 11, 2021
    2:00 pm to 2:45 pm

    Research Tools for Exploring Your Career Options

    Turn your research acumen to the task of exploring your career options. This workshop will introduce key tools that help you identify potential career alignment opportunities and learn about them in depth.

  • Friday, May 14, 2021
    2:00 pm to 3:30 pm

    How Do You Lead People Who are Not Like You? A Myers-Briggs Type Workshop

    Have you ever wondered how your personality preferences shape the way you interact with other people? If you prefer quiet time alone to interacting with a group, might that preference shape your style as a leader—and the way it’s received by those with the opposite preference? What if you like to be highly organized with checklists but your colleagues prefer to fly by the seat of their pants? This interactive workshop will help you learn about your behaviors and preferences by considering the way that people with the opposite personality preferences might perceive you, impacting your effectiveness as a leader.

Core Competencies

  • Tuesday, May 11, 2021
    11:00 am to 12:00 pm

    Fulbright and Grants Abroad for Graduate Students: An Information Session

    Get professional or research experience abroad for 6-12 months! Staff from Nationally Competitive Scholarships at Duke will tell you about all you can do around the world with a Fulbright and differentiate the types of grants available. All Duke students and alumni should apply through an on-campus process with deadlines beginning in early summer. Come learn about the possibilities that a Fulbright offers and how Duke can help you develop your strongest application.

Careers Beyond Academia

Past Events


Melissa Bostrom, PhD
Assistant Dean for Graduate Student Professional Development
Duke University Graduate School