Graduate & Postdoctoral Professional Skills (GPPS)

GPPS - Graduate & Postdoctoral Professional Skills banner

gps-careerThe GPPS Career Pathways and Options workshops offer graduate students and postdoctoral fellows support and resources for exploring the versatile career options open to graduates, discovering and communicating their skills and expertise, and planning for the future. We offer training and support tailored to a variety of career paths: the professoriate, academic administration and staff, business, entrepreneurship, non-profits, and government.

Session Descriptions

Leveraging your STEM PhD outside of academia (for York PhD students and Postdocs)

Leveraging your STEM PhD outside of academia (For York PhD students and Postdocs only) Are you interested in a career outside of the academy? Do you want to learn more about how to navigate the world of post-academic careers as a PhD? During this session, connect with professionals in science, technology, engineering and math professions (STEM) and learn more about hiring practices, employer expectations and how to leverage higher education while exploring available career opportunities.

During this panel, professionals will share examples of the range of opportunities available within their fields, the particularities of applying as a PhD and talk about how to translate the skills developed in academia to non-academic careers. The panel will be followed by an open forum where PhD students will have the opportunity to ask the panelists their own questions.

Host: The Career Centre & Faculty of Graduate Studies
Date:  January 2018
Registration information coming soon.

Leveraging your PhD outside of academia (for York PhD students and Postdocs in the Social Sciences & Humanities)

Leveraging your PhD outside of academia (For York PhD students and Postdocs only). Are you interested in a career outside of the academy? Do you want to learn more about how to navigate the world of post-academic careers as a PhD? During this session, connect with professionals in areas such as government, think tanks, and non-academic research and learn more about hiring practices, employer expectations and how to leverage higher education while exploring available career opportunities.

During this panel, professionals will share examples of the range of opportunities available within their fields, the particularities of applying as a PhD and talk about how to translate the skills developed in academia to non-academic careers. The panel will be followed by an open forum where PhD students and postdocs will have the opportunity to ask the panelists their own questions.

Host: The Career Centre & Faculty of Graduate Studies
Date:  February 2018
Registration information coming soon.

gps-communicationThe GPPS Transferable Professional Skills workshops offer intensive or exploratory workshops on skills which are applicable within the academic world and its job market, but which are also highly desirable within the non-academic and alternative academic job markets. These workshops focus on skills which may be used to enhance your research but which may simultaneously enrich your work in other contexts and be emphasized with great results on a résumé as well as on a CV.

Session Descriptions

Eight-Step Editing: For Graduate Students & Postdocs

Eight-Step Editing provides participants with a practical and versatile “toolkit” to help improve the texts they write and/or edit. The techniques can be applied to a wide range of informational documents, including reports, memos, summaries, proposals, observations, analyses, instructions, web content, and more. Using a step-by-step process, the program identifies the most common factors in writing that become obstacles for readers. It not only helps you recognize the problems, it shows you quick and simple techniques for fixing them.

Eight-Step Editing combines theory with practice. Participants gain an understanding of the principles underlying each of the eight steps, and then apply those principles in exercises. Some of the exercises will be generic, on the assumption that if participants can apply a learning to other people’s writing, they can also apply it to their own. Other exercises could be taken directly from materials provided by the client.

Elizabeth d'Anjou (presenter) has over 20 years of experience as a freelance editor with a diverse clientèle, including textbook publishers, government ministries and nonprofit agencies. Her particular strengths include careful copy editing, translating jargon into accessible prose, and adjusting language level, including plain-language editing and consulting. A third-generation editor, she teaches copy editing for Ryerson University’s Publishing Programme and developed its new online grammar course. She is is in demand as a presenter of communications workshops for corporate, government and nonprofit clients as well as for the Editors’ Association of Canada.

Host: Faculty of Graduate Studies
Date: Thursday, November  16, 2017
Time: 12:30 - 4:30pm
Location: 626 KT
Please register for this workshop.

Project Management

Although collaborative project management is an increasingly core and critical skill in academic and non-academic careers alike, many people with graduate degrees have no explicit or formal preparation in managing collaborative projects, large or small. This one-day practical training session will explore some of the project management skills and tools that can help optimize work performance in a range of professional contexts. The workshop will introduce a standard approach to managing a project, as well as easy-to-use project management tools. Participants will be taken through a 10 step project planning process and receive hands on training in the use of Project Charter, Work Breakdown Structure, Resource Planning, Gantt Chart, and Risk Management tools.

Presenter: Laura Isabella has been with York University for over 7 years in the Talent Acquisition & Development department as the Talent Management Consultant. She is a seasoned corporate adult educator specializing in facilitation, project management, coaching, career planning and leadership development.

Host: Faculty of Graduate Studies & Talent Acquisition & Development
Date: Thursday, March 29, 2018
Time: 9:00 am - 4:00 pm
Location: 280N YL
Please register for this workshop.

gps-managementThe GPPS Writing Success Workshops help you advance through the writing-based milestones of a graduate degree and the steps that come after, whether those steps lead to an academic book contract or a career outside of academia. Learn tricks and access supports as you work through dissertation roadblocks, and learn tips for research organization that will help you in completing your dissertation and other projects.

Session Descriptions

Eight-Step Editing: For Graduate Students & Postdocs

Eight-Step Editing provides participants with a practical and versatile “toolkit” to help improve the texts they write and/or edit. The techniques can be applied to a wide range of informational documents, including reports, memos, summaries, proposals, observations, analyses, instructions, web content, and more. Using a step-by-step process, the program identifies the most common factors in writing that become obstacles for readers. It not only helps you recognize the problems, it shows you quick and simple techniques for fixing them.

Eight-Step Editing combines theory with practice. Participants gain an understanding of the principles underlying each of the eight steps, and then apply those principles in exercises. Some of the exercises will be generic, on the assumption that if participants can apply a learning to other people’s writing, they can also apply it to their own. Other exercises could be taken directly from materials provided by the client.

Elizabeth d'Anjou (presenter) has over 20 years of experience as a freelance editor with a diverse clientèle, including textbook publishers, government ministries and nonprofit agencies. Her particular strengths include careful copy editing, translating jargon into accessible prose, and adjusting language level, including plain-language editing and consulting. A third-generation editor, she teaches copy editing for Ryerson University’s Publishing Programme and developed its new online grammar course. She is is in demand as a presenter of communications workshops for corporate, government and nonprofit clients as well as for the Editors’ Association of Canada.

Host: Faculty of Graduate Studies
Date: Thursday, November  16, 2017
Time: 12:30 - 4:30pm
Location: 626 KT
Please register for this workshop.

Writing Winning Proposals for Postdocs

Learn the secret of writing a compelling proposal that wins, whether that proposal is for funding for research or for a project outside the academic sphere. Proposal writing skills are highly applicable and necessary to a broad range of careers, and may be incorporated as a point of emphasis on either an academic CV or a non-academic résumé. This interactive workshop will get into the nuts and bolts of the main proposal types determined by  participants' interests: the research funding proposal, and the non-academic project proposal.

Host: Faculty of Graduate Studies
Register: Coming Soon
Date: Winter 2018
Location: TBA

gps-knowledgeThe GPPS Knowledge Transfer Strategies workshops help graduate students and postdoctoral fellows develop the skills and knowledge they need to perform effective research and analysis and to ensure that their research secures funding and has an impact, whether that’s through teaching, community engagement, scholarly or popular publication, or online. We offer resources and workshops on performing and managing research, applying for scholarships and fellowships, completing your major graduate degree requirements with the most success and the minimum level of stress, and translating your research to students, academic audiences, and the wider world.

Session Descriptions

Knowledge Mobilization: Planning and Practice

What Knowledge Mobilization (KMb) practices seem to work effectively? How can we determine effectiveness? How can we connect need to practice? An effective KMb strategy helps make research relevant to professional practice and policy development. Using examples from York University and beyond, in this workshop Michael Johnny, Manager, Knowledge Mobilization and Krista Jensen, Knowledge Mobilization Officer from York’s award winning Knowledge Mobilitzation Unit in Innovation York will engage participants in a discussion of the building an effective KMb strategy.
Host: Faculty of Graduate Studies & the Knowledge Moblization Unit
Date: Postponed - new date TBD
Time: TBD
Location: TBD
Please register for this workshop.

Understanding and Negotiating Intellectual Property (IP)

What is intellectual property? Why is it important? What issues do you need to consider in protecting your intellectual property? How can you commercialize your intellectual property? As a graduate student or postdoc, do you have intellectual property rights? How are these rights determined within the university or when working in partnership with an outside organization or business? How do you negotiate intellectual property rights with supervisors? If you are looking for answers to any or all of these questions, this workshop can help.
Host: Faculty of Graduate Studies & Innovation York
Date: Thursday, November 2, 2017
Time: 1:30-3:00 pm
Location: 626 KT
Please register for this workshop.

Practise Your Conference Presentation Skills

Presentations at conferences can be exciting, and also anxiety provoking experiences, especially if you’ve never given a conference paper before. Don’t wait until you’re faced with giving a paper to an audience of the top scholars in your field! Come work out the jitters, and hone your presentation skills, by giving a sample ten-minute paper to a group of experienced (and friendly!) retired York faculty members. They’ll provide you with detailed feedback on how to perfect those essential conference presentation skills like volume, pace, body language, eye contact, and effective use of visual aids.

Host: Faculty of Graduate Studies & YURA (York University Retirees Association)
Date: November 2017
Registration information coming soon.

Communicating Assertively

How many times have you wanted to express yourself more clearly, but you hesitated out of fear that you would be misunderstood, rejected or even punished? Have you ever felt trapped in a situation and felt your only option was to lash out in anger in order to be heard? The consequences of choosing either of the above options can be quite destructive for any relationship. On the job, they can lead to real breakdown and dysfunction. There is a middle ground. It is called assertiveness, a way of simply saying how you feel and asking for the things you need that still respects and preserves the rights of others. Positive and complete interpersonal communication skills must involve direct and honest expression of one's needs, feelings, and opinions without threatening others. Assertiveness is an important step towards control over one's own life and towards building positive relationships with others.

This course will help you build the skills you need to express yourself constructively and effectively in any situation. It focuses on specific techniques to communicate assertively in a variety of situations.

Key Learning Points:

  • Clarify the different styles of communication
  • Identify personal barriers to communicating assertively
  • Say "no" without feeling guilty and without giving offense
  • Learn different strategies to be assertive without being personal

Host: Faculty of Graduate Studies & Talent Acquisition & Development
Date: December 2017
Registration information coming soon.

Complementary Mitacs Workshops

Networking Skills

You’ve all heard the saying “you are only as good as your network,” but have you ever wondered how to get one? This full day workshop is designed to provide insight and interaction along with the know how to build and stabilize business relationships through effective networking. We will cover who-what-where-when and why to network and participants will have the opportunity to practice what they learn. Details on the actual networking exercises will be determined by the location of each event. Activities will be customized to reflect the interests of the participants.

When: Wednesday, November 2, 2016
Time: 9:00am – 5:00pm (Registration starts at 8:45am)
Where: York University - York Lanes
Room: 305
Password to complete the registration: MitacsNet1102
More Details and Registration: https://step.mitacs.ca/en/workshop/2016/11/networking-skills-toronto-november-2

The GPPS Program overall aims to connect you with people, organizations and resources that will help you develop your professional plans and goals and strategically meet those goals. These workshops will help get you connected, as will this list of links, groups and resources on campus and beyond.

Complementary Mitacs Workshops

Career Professionalism

From first impressions to making a lasting impression, this one-day workshop will provide you with tips, tricks and tools from dressing the part to knowing how to apply effective communication techniques and professional behaviour when working closely with others.

When: Tuesday, October 3, 2017, 9 am – 5 pm (Registration starts at 8:45 am)
Location: 305 York Lanes
Registration through Mitacs.