Join The Graduate School for a series of conversations with alumni reflecting on the role that their Duke education played in their careers, facilitated by faculty and current students. These 30-minute virtual conversations focus on six key questions:

  1. Tell us about your background. What was your path to your current role?
  2. Can you tell us about your organization and describe a typical day for a Ph.D.-level hire? 
  3. What do you see as the value that doctoral training has added to your professional trajectory?
  4. Beyond strong research skills, what other skills, experience and/or training are important for success in your field?  
  5. Are there any skills, training, or experiences you wish you’d had in graduate school to prepare you for your current career path?
  6. What can students who would like to work in this field (or explore it further) do to prepare?

Richard Colvin, M.D., Ph.D.
Senior Leadership Insights: A Conversation with Richard Colvin, M.D., Ph.D., Chief Medical Officer, bluebird bio

Tuesday, February 27, 2:00 to 2:30 pm

What leadership challenges lie in the gene therapy industry? Join us for a conversation with M.D. and microbiology & immunology Ph.D. alumnus Richard Colvin to hear what leadership looks like at the intersection of medicine and business. Dr. Colvin will be joined in conversation by Dr. Christopher Kontos, Professor of Medicine and Director of the Medical Science Training Program.

Jothy Rosenberg, PhD
Senior Leadership Insights: A Conversation with Jothy Rosenberg, Ph.D., Executive Chairman, Dover Microsystems

Monday, October 23, 11:00 to 11:30 am

How does a self-described "incorrigible entrepreneur" build a career that begins in academia and leads to founding nine companies? Join us for a conversation with computer science Ph.D. alumnus Jothy Rosenberg, who lives by the motto "Who says I can't?" in his professional and personal endeavors. Dr. Rosenberg will be joined in conversation by Dr. Rong Ge, Cue Family Associate Professor of Computer Science and Director of Graduate Studies, with time for attendee questions.

Recordings of Past Events

Evelyn Murphy ’61, Ph.D.’65
Founder and President, The WAGE Project, Inc.
Tuesday, May 25, 2021

Lisa Yvette Waller, Ph.D.’97
Head of School, The Berkeley Carroll School
Tuesday, June 1, 2021 

Adam Sharkawy, Ph.D.’97
Co-Founder and Managing Partner, Material Impact
Monday, July 12, 2021 

Ron Temple, ’90
Managing Director and Head of U.S. Equities and Co-Head of Multi-Asset Investing at Lazard Asset Management
Thursday, September 2, 2021 

Bob Beckler, Ph.D.
Chairman and CEO at TemperPack
Friday, October 15, 2021

Susan Wood, Ph.D.
President and CEO of VIDA Diagnostics
Tuesday, November 16, 2021 

Chini Krishnan, Ph.D.
Founder and CEO,
Thursday, January 13, 2022 

Tomiko Brown-Nagin, J.D., Ph.D.
Dean of Harvard Radcliffe Institute
Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Lori Lehman, Ph.D.
Former Vice President, Gilead Sciences
Wednesday, March 23, 2022

Darryl Webster '82, J.D. 
Senior executive and advisor to biotech and life sciences companies
May 26, 2022

Dennis Gilmore, Ph.D.
President, Crosslynk Research Consulting
Tuesday, January 31, 2023

Wanda Wallace, Ph.D.
Managing Partner, Leadership Forum
Tuesday, February 21, 2023

Heather Megosh, Ph.D.

Global Director of Strategy and Operations for the Social, Healthcare and Public Entities Practice at McKinsey & Company

Monday, May 22, 2023


Help Us Plan Future Conversations

We welcome suggestions of other Graduate School alumni in leadership roles to be featured in future events.


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