Teaching Career Diversity Through Informational Interviews

  The content and format of career diversity within humanities departments follows no single model. As curriculum committees and graduate program chairs consider whether or not to make coursework or training mandatory, where to situate it within the arc of the program, and how to connect students with resources beyond the unit or department, it can be helpful to identify models implemented at other institutions. One approach – by Dr. Purnima Dhavan, Director of Graduate Studies at the University of Washington’s history department – featured in the July 2018 issue of […]

Humanities for All

A project of the National Humanities Alliance, the Humanities for All database showcases “higher ed-based publicly engaged humanities initiatives, presenting a cross-section of over 1400 undertaken over the past decade from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico.” Projects are organized by discipline, theme, geography, and type of institutional and community partners. There’s plenty of material for students investigating a range of humanities options, for scholars interested in models of how to add a public facet to their research, or anybody who wants to learn more about the […]

Mobilizing the Humanities for Diverse Careers

  This piece from Anne Krook encourages humanities graduate departments to focus “on two problems whose fixes are within our own control.” She identifies the problems as as, first, training “students in too narrow a range of dissertation lengths and types” and second “most often implicitly and explicitly devalu[ing] non-academic job outcomes.” Departments and advisers might, instead, consider shorter dissertations, how to “teach students to write for broader audiences in a wider variety of venues,” and how to train “faculty to value and support the non-academic jobs that we know […]

Recap: A Tool Kit for Doctoral Student Career Planning

In May 2017, the MLA’s Connected Academics Initiative published a guide for PhD programs and faculty about doctoral student career planning. This past January, at the MLA conference in New York, Kalle Westerling attended a Connected Academics Initiative event on “Doctoral Student Career Planning.” Designed for faculty and advisors in academic institutions—especially those who wanted to advise their students about careers different from those of the traditional humanities career-track – this piece presents a writeup of the three panelists and a transcript of the Q&A.

Preparing for Humanities Careers: Suggestions for Doctoral Students and Departments

By Matthew Woodbury, Doctoral Candidate, Department of History As a historian, when asked to explain what I do, one reply is to say I study change and continuity over time. This month that methodological approach takes a personal turn; there are a few changes on my horizon as I reach the final weeks of my doctoral studies and finish a research assistantship with Rackham Graduate School’s Humanities PhD Project. Like the end of a calendar year, the conclusion of an academic year is an appropriate moment to celebrate successes, consider […]

American Historical Association’s Career Diversity Faculty Resources

The American Historical Association has identified five core skills of historical training – communication, collaboration, quantitative literacy, intellectual self-confidence, and digital literacy. Resources on the AHA’s career diversity resources for faculty page offer examples of class activities and projects that faculty could consider incorporating into existing syllabi or as inspiration for an new course or workshop.

Resources for Philosophers

Part of the mission statement of the American Philosophical Association is the “professional development of philosophers at all levels.” Beyond Academia is an APA publication intended to provide guidance in the form of resources, information, and advice to philosophers who are interested in exploring a wide range of humanities careers. Along with brief suggestions to departments, his resource includes links to resources for a broad range of career opportunities; data on careers outside the academy; and biographical essays of philosophers who have successfully found ways to use their philosophical training […]

What role should departments play?

In this post, Dr. Kristina Markman and Dr. Michael Ryan discuss what role departments have in preparing students for humanities careers. Dr. Markman and Dr. Ryan emphasize the importance of what language departments use when discussing non-faculty trajectories, addressing a perceived “stigma” attached to employment outside the professoriate, and the need for students and departments to work together to prepare doctoral students for a broad range of post-graduation outcomes.

Promising Practices in Humanities PhD Professional Development

This report presents findings from the 2016-2017 Next Generation Humanities PhD Consortium that is useful for faculty and administrators interested in professional development. Funded by the NEH and facilitated by the Council of Graduate Schools, the document outlines lessons learned, suggests some practices encouraging career diversity, and includes some ideas about how to go forward with professional development.

Next Steps for Career Diversity: Diving into Graduate Education

In the December 2017 issue of Perspectives, the American Historical Association’s news magazine, Executive Director James Grossman discussed next steps for the AHA’s Career Diversity Initiative. An overarching goal for the AHA’s Career Diversity for Historians Initiative is addressing discrepancies between what is taught in history doctoral programs and the work that history PhDs actually do. Developing skills in communication, collaboration, quantitative literacy, intellectual self-confidence, and digital literacy can have great utility for both new professors and non-traditional careers.