Career Services Upcoming Events & Recordings 

Alumni Career Mentor Event Series

The Alumni Career Mentor Event Series invites MAPSS, CIR, and Computation alumni from different career sectors back to campus. They come to talk about their current positions and how they got there to introduce you to a range of career possibilities and provide experience-based insight to help guide your future endeavors. The talks are followed by a Q&A session.  

  • Spotlight on Social Impact Careers: Beth Spurgeon |  Division Manager of Corporate Responsibility and Executive Director of the USA Foundation at ArcelorMittal | Beth is the Division Manager of Corporate Responsibility and Executive Director of the USA Foundation at ArcelorMittal, the world’s leading steel and mining company. She spearheads ArcelorMittal’s corporate responsibility and sustainability initiatives across the Americas region. In the U.S., she oversees ArcelorMittal’s community investment, including national and local nonprofit partnerships in the company’s focus areas of STEM education, environment, and health and safety. She also manages sustainability initiatives, stakeholder engagement, and employee volunteerism and giving. Prior to working at ArcelorMittal, she spent nine years in the social impact sector working at nonprofits ranging from grassroots to national organizations. Beth earned her B.A. in Sociology from Ithaca College in 2003 and an M.A. in Social Science from The University of Chicago in 2004. You can find the recording here
  • Spotlight on Data and Decision Sciences: Sushmita Gopalan | Decision Scientist at Grubhub | Sushmita is a Decision Scientist in the Systems Analysis team at Grubhub in Chicago. She graduated from the MACSS program in 2018 and was a Data Scientist at the Northwestern Neighborhood and Network Initiative at Northwestern University, until she made the transition to industry with Grubhub in March 2020. She is a co-organizer and on the board of R-Ladies Chicago, a support and advocacy group for women and non-binary R programmers. You can find the recording here.
  • Spotlight on Development Research and Policy: Dr. Christina Kwauk | Fellow at Brookings | Christina Kwauk is a fellow in the Center for Universal Education at Brookings. She manages the Echidna Global Scholars Program, chairs the Girls CHARGE initiative, and leads the CHARGE Working Group on Life Skills Education and Assessment. She has also advised the Obama Foundation’s Global Girls Alliance. Her research focuses on girls’ education in developing countries, gender equality in education, the intersections between climate change and girls’ education, and 21st century skills and youth empowerment. Christina is a co-author (with Gene Sperling and Rebecca Winthrop) of What Works in Girls’ Education: Evidence for the World’s Best Investment, and has published numerous policy papers on girls’ education and academic articles on gender, education, and sport for development. She has conducted field research in Asia and the Pacific Islands, and was formerly a consultant for Save the Children and the East West Center. Christina holds a PhD in Comparative and International Development Education from the University of Minnesota and an MA in Social Sciences from the University of Chicago. You can find the recording here.
  • Spotlight on Product Design: Ishani Sharma | Lead Product Designer at Salesforce| Ishani is a Lead Product Designer at Salesforce, building commerce tools for merchants who want to run e-commerce businesses. She graduated from the MAPSS program in 2014, and started her career in User Experience as a user researcher and transitioned into a designer role. She loves thinking about the intersection of business, technology, and design, keeping users and their needs at the heart of it. She is based out of San Francisco, and in her free time, you can find her hiking, gardening, or cooking! You can find the recording here.

Employer Coffee Chats

Virtual Coffee Chats allow students to join employers and CS staff as they casually discuss professional trends over a cup of coffee. Employers provide exclusive information about their company cultures, industry trends, and best practices in career advancement. Virtual Coffee Chats may be live or pre-recorded.

  • Christina Coughlin | Assistant Commissioner | NY State Education Department | Christina Coughlin, Assistant Commissioner of the NY State Education Department, shares anecdotes on working through crisis (9/11 and COVID-19), maintaining relationships, and activating your academic skills in non-academic work. The recording is available here.
  • Elise Lockwood | Qualitative Research Director | DORIS Research | Elise Lockwood, Qualitative Research Director at DORIS Research provides her unique insights on what it takes to be a successful qualitative researcher and how to sharpen your skills in design thinking as a grad student with limited experience. She even explains why students should look into improv classes. The recording is available here.
  • Kelsey Cohen | Director of Operations | Bloomscape | Kelsey Cohen, Director of Operations, at Bloomscape – a start-up headquartered in the Detroit metro area – leads a discussion detailing her journey to locating her professional “superpowers”, navigating pivots in her career, and advice on choosing between start-ups and established businesses. She highlights her recent transition from being a data-driven marketing leader to finding a home in operations and scaling up her impact in a blossoming industry. The recording is available here.
  • Jean-Luc Marcelin | Partnerships and Talent Acquisition Specialist | United Nations Development Programme | In this two-part series, Jean-Luc Marcelin starts off by detailing his 20+ year journey with the UN system. He candidly shares what it takes to get into the UN system and how to be a productive member once there. During the second part of the series, Jean-Luc details the various threads needed within the “tapestry” of your resume/CV and answers student’s questions.

Part One recording available here

Part Two recording available here

  • Jordan Mazer | Director of Talent Acquisition | Riot Games | Jordan Mazer, Director of Talent Acquisition at Riot Games provides the insider scope on the top qualities he looks for in a candidate, difference between competing gaming companies, and the amazing work Riot Games is doing to help those in need during COVID-19. Jordan wraps things up by answering questions from SSD MA students and sharing what’s next for Riot Games. The recording is available here.
  • Jennifer Tani | Director | The Posee Foundation | Having a “posse” can be a vital tool to achieving success. Jennifer Tani, Director of The Posse Foundation- Chicago sheds some light on how creating intentional networks of accountability leads to the creation of academic opportunities and professional development. Jennifer candidly shares how she taps into her network and how future non-profit directors can prepare to be effective leaders, The recording is available here

  • Shanshan Ding, PhD |Director of Data Science | Hinge  | While others have plotted their course towards academia or industry, Shanshan Ding, PhD has decided to do both. Currently the Director of Data Science at Hinge and Adjunct Instructor at Columbia University, she shares how both environments complement each other and contribute to her success. She highlights data science trends and possible connections between data science and compliance law in the future. The recording is avaialable here.

  • Vanessa Shelby | Senior Manager, Qualitative Research | Explorer Research | Vanessa Shelby, Senior Manager of Qualitative Research at Explorer Research leads us of through the journey of “starting something new.” During the discussion she talks about implementing neuroscience technology into qualitative research, the future of market research as a result of social distancing, and how students can start building their online portfolios now. The recording is available here.

Career Workshop Series (CWS)

The Career Workshops Series is a set of interactive workshops facilitated by Director of Career Services , Shelly L. Robinson, PhD. Topics vary from quarter to quarter and focus on key area of career development including exploration, job search, networking, document preparation, interviewing and more.

  • Job Search Techniques & Negotiation Tips | This session will cover actions you can take to empower yourself and work your career plan even in uncertain times. Links are available to the recording and the handout.

Special Events 

Academic to Applied Research: How Your Social Science Skills Translate After Graduation | Have you ever wondered how your social science research experience might APPLY in the business world? Join us for a panel event, hosted by Ipsos UX and Career Services, and hear from seven former academic researchers about translating their experiences to the applied world, leveraging their academic degrees on the job market, and what it is like to work in UX as a social scientist. Academia and applied research may be different, but they are not as black and white as you might think!  You can watch the recording here.

GRADUCon Panels

The 11th annual GRADUCon was held on Friday April 3rd, 2020. In light of recommendations with COVID-19, we moved all panels and the keynote address online for GRADUCon 2020. Click below to hear audio recordings of the individual panels!

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