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Making the Case for Multiple Mentors

Higher education necessitates academic mentorship. At the graduate level, it is often compulsory. But what about mentorship for those on non-academic career paths? As academic mentorship is a cornerstone of academic success, I propose that non-academic mentors are equally as important for career success outside of the academy. Given that less than 20% of PhD holders in Canada will find tenure-track positions (Conference Board of Canada, 2015), I think it’s time to mentor up. (more…)

Summer Withdrawals & How to Defeat Them

Back to school – we all know the feeling. Whether you spent your entire summer travelling and relaxing, or whether you were slaving away at a job, internship or volunteer position, there’s a certain panic that accompanies the end of summer and the transition back to school life. The chilling expectation of winter weather aside, fall semester can be intimidating in a way that winter semester often isn’t: your brain isn’t functioning like it used to, you’re reading slower, your handwriting is way messier and there is no reading week to look forward to. Fall semester, however, is the best time to get active both on and off campus! Here are some ways to maximize your first few months back: (more…)

Happy Academic New Year!

September is my favorite time of year. It’s always hard to say goodbye to summer but the fall season also brings some of my favorite things – crisp autumn leaves, hoodie weather, football, savory pies… and a feeling of fresh beginnings fueled by a recently completed 7 year stint in graduate school.

“New Year” Challenge: How Will You Work Career Planning into Your Schedule? (more…)

PhD to Industry: Transferrable Skills

As the job market landscape for PhDs continues to shift, with more and more PhDs opting for non-academic career paths, there is much work to do in supporting PhDs in honing “core competencies” in a way that makes them employable and competitive for industry positions. I’ve spent the past few years working to identify and translate the skills developed during a PhD in the context of industry and government needs, and found that I have the skills, I just needed to work on communicating them to potential employers. (more…)

Feeling Like an Imposter? Don’t Let it Ruin Your Job Search

Imposter’s syndrome – that feeling that sooner or later, everyone around us will realize we are a fraud…that we’re not as good at this as everyone thinks…that we are not qualified and don’t belong here…

Many of us have experienced these thoughts and feelings at some point, with research identifying imposter’s syndrome in students, faculty, corporate employees, and management alike. Whether we are just embarking on our career path or stepping-up along the way, experiencing imposter’s syndrome can influence our decision-making process if we’re not careful. (more…)

Adieu School Year 2018-2019 and Summer is Coming

Source: https://reporter.mcgill.ca/mcgill-named-of-one-canadas-greenest-employers-for-2019/

I felt really bad for stopping posting for a while since the life has become really crazy involving all the courses and research you need to do as a second-year PhD student. It’s also a fruitful year that I got a project finished and started working on the second one intensively. I’m glad that so far my School Year 2018-2019 has gone well. (more…)

To Do Before the Dreadful 7th of January

And head into the new year with this commercial in mind. Like seriously, was it made especially for students like us who have “no time for anything” yet spend hours mindlessly scrolling on our phones?

  • Subscribe to a new podcast.

Get hooked! Find one you’ll want listen to on your way to class or on your way home from that long day. You’d be surprised how relaxing it could be and how it could give you the ability to say “Hey, I really didn’t know that!” on a weekly basis.

My personal favorite: Past Present

(more…)

Book Review: Mind Gym, Part 2

In this post, I am going to cover how different concepts from Mind Gym[1] can be applied by students. You may be familiar with some of them from other ‘self-help’ type books, from workshops on time or stress and anxiety management, or already use them without giving them names. I am going to give overviews of the power of positive thinking, motivation and fear of failure, and SMART goals. All of these contribute to getting ‘in the zone’ and succeed at everyday tasks or activities. (more…)

Book Review: “Mind Gym”, Part 1

You might find Mind Gym: An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence[1] in the sports section or the self-help section, depending on the bookstore. Published in 2001, Mind Gym was written by sports psychologist Gary Mack to show regular people how the mind influences athletic performance. The book is organized into 40 chapters which end with short exercises to improve the mental habits which help performers succeed. Mack demonstrates the impacts of stress and motivation on success using examples from sports. However, his recommendations apply to elite athletes and regular people alike. (more…)

Research in Industry vs. Academic Research

Credit to: Japan Chemical Daily

It is not that easy to get an internship in a company, especially when there are more restrictions on international students. As I wrote in my very first blog, I went to an interview to get an R&D internship in a renowned enterprise in the fine chemical industry. It was a hard interview but fortunately I nailed it. Without this experience, I would not decide to do a PhD after a master, and it was so different from doing academic research. (more…)

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