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PhD Career Pathways Conference 2019

Friday, April 19, 2019, from 9:00 am - 2:00 pm, Colony Ballroom, Stamp Student Union


This FREE day-long conference is specifically for current doctoral students and postdocs from all disciplines and is designed to to educate attendees about the wide variety of career paths that exist for them. In addition to learning about career possibilities for PhDs, attendees will have multiple opportunities throughout the day to connect and get valuable advice from UMD graduate alumni working in the MD/DC/VA area.  

Conference Schedule

9:00-9:30 am             Check-in and Breakfast (Colony Ballroom)
9:30-9:50 am             Opening Remarks  
10:00-11:15 am         Session 1 (Four Panel Choices)
11:15-11:45 am         Networking Session
11:45 am-1:00 pm     Session 2 (Four Panel Choices)
1:00-2:00 pm             Networking Lunch

Panels (updated 4/16/19)

Check the panelists' bios here (.doc) or here (.pdf)

Session 1: 10:00-11:15 AM

Communication, Writing & Editing Careers - Graduate education provides research and analytical skills, as well as subject matter expertise, that can be vital preparation for a wide range of careers in communications, journalism and writing/editing. 

Abby Robinson (Assistant Dean of Communications, CMNS-UMD)
Carol Corneilse (Principal, Good Hope Consulting)
Sarah (Ahlbrand) Ellinwood (Associate Analyst/Medical Writer, Verge Scientific Communications)
Stanley Dambroski (Public Affairs Specialist, National Science Foundation)

Scientific & Technical Career Pathways: So Many Possibilities - This panel includes a diverse mix of scientific and technical professionals and organizations. The tech and science world has opportunities for PhDs in a wide range of disciplines.

Amanda Forster (Materials Research Engineer, National Institute of Standards and Technology)
Anand Ramanathan (Data Scientist, Capital One)
Chandria Jones (Sr. Study Director, Westat)
Katrina Groth (Assistant Professor, University of Maryland, College Park)
Kenneth Bell (Manager of G&HES, Betchel Power Corporation)

Serving the Public Good in Social Justice Careers: Are you interested in using your knowledge and expertise to solve big complex issues threatening humanity? Hear how PhDs are out there tackling topics of national and international importance such as health, poverty, food and water security, education and equity.

Heather Creek (Manager, Survey Research Support, The Pew Charitable Trusts)
Kelly Quinn (Program Coordinator at Community Engagement Center, University of Maryland Baltimore)
Lauren Doamekpor (Senior Associate, Guidehouse)
Regina Davis Moss (Associate Executive Director, American Public Health Association)

Administrative Jobs in Higher Education - This panel will include various University Administrators, who will discuss their career paths from gaining the PhD to entering into their current positions.

Beth Brittan-Powell (Director, Joint Research Collaborations-Division of Research, University of Maryland)
Darragh McNally (Assistant Vice Provost, UMUC Center for Innovation in Learning and Student Success)
Dave Eubanks (Associate Director, College Park Scholars)
Iadviga Zhelezinskaia (Geosciences Lab Manager, Montgomery College)

Session 2: 11:45 AM-1:00 PM

Professional Pathways in Non-Profit Agencies - A conversation with PhDs who are locally based in the Washington DC area and employed in interesting positions in government agencies and other non-profits.

Dennis Doster (Black History Program Manager, Prince George's County)
Phuong Hoang (Research Faculty, National Intelligence University)
Robin Bloodworth (Data Analyst, Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute)
Tiffany Jones (Director of Higher Education Policy, Education Trust)
William Kenlon (District New Music Coalition)

Use Your PhD to Protect the World - From climate change to issues surrounding conflict and international security, this panel will discuss career paths and organizations that address these critical issues.

Crystal Upperman (Research Associate, Global Commission on Adaptation)
Kiersten Johnson (Monitoring and Evaluation Advisor, United States Agency for International Development-Bureau for Food Security)
Maira Bezerra (Associate Scientist, Conservation International)
Sue Lin (Director, Quality Division in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Health Resources and Services Administration)

Research Outside of Academia - Expand your knowledge about possible career paths and organizations that utilize those quantitative and qualitative research data collection and analysis skills you have developed during your doctoral education.

George Stantchev (Computational Scientist, Naval Research Laboratory)
Keisha Wilson McDowell (Principal Investigator/Engineering Consultant, DuPont Engineering Research & Technology)
Sarah Blankenship (SRCD/AAAS Policy Fellow, Administration for Children and Families)
Sidra Montgomery (Researcher, Insight Policy Research)
Stefanie Brodie (Transportation Planning and Policy Research Specialist, District Department of Transportation)

Faculty Jobs Beyond the Research University Do you enjoy teaching at the university-level more than doing research? Learn more about teaching career paths other than tenure track R1 positions.

Dina Kurzweil (Director & Assistant Professor, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences)
Dylan Roby (Associate Professor & Associate Chair of Health Services Administration, UMD School of Public Health)
Ethan Eagle (Keystone Instructor, University of Maryland)
Pallavi Guha (Assistant Professor, Towson University)


2019 Conference Planning Committee Members:

Conference Graduate Assistants: Thiago Pacheco (Office of Postdoctoral Affairs) and Jeffrey Yeung (Graduate School Office of Professional & Career Development)

College of Arts and Humanities
 Ralph Bauer
College of Behavioral and Social Sciences: Jenny Kilberg and Rachel Venaglia (BSOS DGSAC)
A.J. Clark School of Engineering Career Services: Veronica Perrigan
International Students & Scholar ServicesGabriela Martinez Gillespie
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs: Blessing Enekwe (Conference Co-Chair)
College of Computer, Mathematical, & Natural Sciences: Zakiya Whatley
School of Public Health: Nancy Gray Smith 
School of Public Policy: Bryan Kempton
Teaching & Learning Transformation Center: Marissa Stewart
The Graduate School: Amanda Strausser,  Mary Carroll-Mason
University Career Center & The President's Promise:  Susan Martin (Conference Co-Chair), Michelle Watson