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Rita B. Leahy Career Series

Rita B Leahy Lectures logo

During 2019-2020, the first annual Rita B. Leahy Career Series will bring current doctoral students and Maryland alumni together to meet and explore career opportunities for PhDs.  Two sessions will take place each semester. All will be held from 4:30-6:00 PM in the University Career Center & The President’s Promise, Room 3134 of the South Wing of Hornbake. The speakers' opening remarks will be simultaneously broadcast via Webex. The networking part of the program will not be on Webex so in person attendance is preferable.

Spring 2020

Careers in Consulting for PhDs - Thursday, 3/5/20

There are many types of consulting opportunities for PhDs including large management consulting firms, working for a boutique consulting firm,  freelance work or starting your own consulting company.  This is especially true if your PhD and work experience is relevant to industries such as pharma/biotech, information technology, finance, and human resources.

Confirmed Panelists: Kenyatta Albeny, PhD, Comparative Literature & English, 2015, Consultant, Technical Writer, Savan Group

Careers for PhDs in the Federal Government
 Wednesday, 4/8/20

There are plenty of available options for those with PhDs in one of the many departments, agencies, and research labs of the federal government in and outside of Washington, DC. PhDs find opportunities at the National Institutes of Health, National Science Foundation, Dept of Agriculture, Department of Defense, and Department of Education, just to name a few of the many organizations under the federal umbrella. 

Confirmed Panelists: Neil Mansharamani, PhD, Communication, 2014, Writer, Department of Transportation


About Dr. Rita B. Leahy

Photograph of Rita B. LeahyRita Leahy received her PhD in Civil Engineering from the University of Maryland in 1989. She is very grateful for her education at Maryland because it put her in touch with organizations and people who had a big impact on her life and career. Dr. Leahy feels it is very important for Ph.D. students to understand the different career options that are available to them and to build a professional network. In 2018, Dr. Leahy created a fund in the Graduate School to support the professional development of doctoral students and the creation of an annual speaker series featuring UMD alumni working in exciting and meaningful careers outside of the academy. 

Dr. Leahy’s own career path is a testimony to the power of networking - developing and maintaining connections with individuals.  These connections along with an unstoppable spirit of openness took her career in directions she never could have predicted. She believes that success in life is “finding something that you love to do and finding someone willing to pay you to do it.”  According to Dr. Leahy, success is where preparation and opportunity meet.