Your Career Compass


Next retreat: Fall semester, 2024
Location: TBD

Your Career Compass Workshop

  • designed specifically for graduate students
  • are offered every term
  • are facilitated by a career education specialist from Career and Volunteer Services
  • have limited seating so sign up early

How much time will this take?

Adapted for the former 3-part series workshops (2 hours each), this retreat will be condensed into 3 hours in-class time. You’ll undertake some small activities on your own time before the retreat. You may choose how much additional time you wish to invest in career-life clarification and intentional exploration and some of the complimentary exercises you’ll be introduced to the session. 

What career-life questions are you asking yourself?  

Gain clarity about what really matters to you in your career pursuits and create your personalized plan to help you reach your future potential.  

Graduate Studies in partnership with Career and Volunteer Services offers a three-hour career clarification and exploration workshop for graduate students to help guide you through your decision-making.

Whether you would like to narrow your career options inside or outside of academia, this session will guide you to chart your own course.

What’s in it for you?

  • A half-day intensive workshop with your peers

  • An evidence-based approach to telling and understanding your story

  • Tapping into events and experiences in your life up to now to clarify your values, strengths and interests

  • Discovering new career-life possibilities

  • Creating action plans to guide your next steps and change management strategies to help navigate uncertainties

  • Substantive takeaways and tools that you may return to again and again


Our Professional Development Wayfinder and Career Compass are designed to not only make the most of your graduate student experience, but to also discover the skills you've built in order to pave your own career journey.

Learn more about why this is important in Ph.D.s should separate their degree from a singular career path and consider new narratives

Planning for life after grad school when you're about to graduate (University Affairs, March 2021) outlines some of the things that Your Career Compass Workshops helps you to navigate, regardless of the stage you're at in your graduate student journey.

Read about how Your Career Compass Workshops can be useful for you in considering the right Postdoc position for you.

If you have questions or trouble registering please contact us at

If you are not able to make one of the sessions, let the facilitator know and we can help catch you up!

Getting Started

Pre-requisites: None

Hour One

Use an evidence-based method of exploring and understanding your personal story/ies to:

  • take stock of your current situation, interests and strengths
  • explore your values and priorities
  • identify future career possibilities inside and outside of academia

Connecting the Dots & Prioritizing

Pre-requisites: Session 1

Hour Two

Distill and prioritize what matters most to you and craft a statement that will guide you professionally. In addition, you will map out your current network and identify possible new connections.

Taking Action & Moving Forward

Hour Three

Develop action plans and learn about networking strategies to confidently make well-informed career, work, and life choices.

tools you will have access to through Your Career Compass

Clarification Sketch

A snapshot of your desires, strengths, assets, and possibilities from your significant career and life events and experiences; essential bits of data that help you frame choices for creating your inspired next move with confidence.


Capture the essence of who you are, what matters to you, and how you want to be in the world in your own words. Use this tool to navigate our unpredictable and changing world, in conversations, and have concrete language for your LinkedIn Profile, resumes and cover letters.

Exploration Plan

An interactive worksheet to help you notice clues and identify intentional actions which will set you up to strategically explore possible future scenarios.