Three Minute Thesis (3MT) Competition

Can you present your research in just three minutes? PhD students are invited to enter this year’s Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition to hone their public speaking skills and earn cash prizes.

This year’s 3MT will take place in-person on Friday, May 19 from 12:30 to 2:00 p.m. in UChicagoGRAD’s headquarters, located on the 3rd floor of the bookstore. A reception with a light lunch will follow.

In a 3MT competition, participants prepare a three-minute presentation about their research using only one static slide. It’s a great opportunity to showcase your work to a broader audience. A judging panel will award $2,000 total, with $1,000 to the first-place winner.

Any PhD student currently working on a research-based project may participate. The focus of your presentation should be your original research, pitched in an engaging way to a general audience without losing sight of the significance and impact of your work.

If you are interested in participating, please register for and attend the info session on Thursday, April 27, 3:00 to 4:00 p.m. at UChicagoGRAD HQ. Questions? Contact Kathrin Kranz (


Graduate students and postdocs visit employer sites through UChicagoGRAD career exploration treks

Graduate students engaging with a panel of staff members at the Art Institute of Chicago on the Cultural Institutions and Museums Trek.

UChicago graduate students engaging with a panel of staff members at the Art Institute of Chicago during the most recent Cultural Institutions and Museums Trek.

In 2022, UChicagoGRAD brought back its successful in-person employer site visits (“treks”). These treks bring groups of 10–12 graduate students and postdocs to organizations to learn about the work the organization and its staff are doing, how staff transitioned into their positions, and what tips they have for students excited about pursuing similar work opportunities. In turn, host organizations raise awareness of their work and mission and meet talented graduate students and postdocs who have demonstrated a sincere interest in exploring internships and employment opportunities at the organization. By hosting treks, organizations can also build an ongoing relationship with UChicagoGRAD, which can help organizations recruit advanced degree talent and develop a presence on campus.

Two recent treks brought students to the Evozyne Headquarters in Chicago’s Lincoln Park neighborhood and to Cultural Institutions and Museums in Chicago, including The Haitian American Museum of Chicago, Chicago Cultural Alliance, Chicago History Museum, and The Art Institute of Chicago.

At Evozyne, PhD students and postdocs learned about the broader biotech industry as well as the specific mission of Evozyne to make novel proteins that help solve problems in therapeutics and sustainability. The visit included a tour of the labs, a scientific and corporate overview of the company, and a panel discussion with staff, including a recent UChicago alum.

During the Cultural Institutions and Museums Trek, students learned about not only the organizations and their workspaces but also various career trajectories. As with every trek UChicagoGRAD has organized, student and employer feedback underlined the value of site visits and treks. One student shared that she “felt most energized” learning about opportunities through the treks, while another expressed that the “meetings were extremely enlightening and inspiring.” Organizations shared what a pleasure it was to meet with a small group of engaged and curious graduate students, and that they appreciated learning more about UChicago talent in an informal setting.

UChicagoGRAD facilitates several employer site visits and treks every year. If you are curious about learning more or interested in hosting UChicago graduate and postdoc talent for an on-site visit, please be in touch with Kathrin Kranz, Director of Experiential Learning and Outreach, at

Reflecting on your career journey and looking ahead to 2023

Once the bustle of the quarter winds down, you might find yourself reflecting on the professional highs and lows of the past year: the paper that was an unexpected success, the experiment that did not go to plan, or perhaps the prestigious internship opportunity that you managed to land. Whether you feel on track to meet your professional goals or bewildered at the prospect of life after graduate or postdoctoral study, UChicagoGRAD has a range of resources, opportunities, and workshops available to help.

2 tips for setting yourself up for success in 2023:

Career advising appointment: check. Even if you have met with a career advisor in the past, consider making an appointment for next week or in January. With academic and professional backgrounds that align with those of the populations they serve, UChicagoGRAD’s career advisors understand the graduate and postdoctoral experience and the distinct value that rigorous advanced-degree training brings to the wider world.

Focus on the flora. If you have a discrete project that needs to get done over the break, consider a focus app like Flora (free), which is based on the Pomodoro method of focusing on the task at hand for 25 minutes, followed by a 5 minute break. Repeat four times and then take a longer 15-30 minute break. Apps like Flora can help discrete projects stay that way. For help optimizing your work/life balance and satisfaction—especially as you manage both current work and career development—you might also consider a Sounding Board appointment with UChicagoGRAD’s Lizanne Phalen.

Are You on the Academic Job Market?

Are you applying to faculty positions and postdocs? UChicagoGRAD is here to help you put together strong academic job market applications and prepare you for your academic job interviews. Join our workshops, set up a 1:1 advising appointment, and check out our online resources. 

Upcoming Workshops 

Join us for a new workshop on Wednesday, September 15, 12:30-1:30 p.m. (CT). Tailoring Your Academic Job Market Applications will explain how to read academic job advertisements to pick up on important clues about a hiring department’s priorities. Moreover, it will provide you with practical advice on how to use this information to put together tailored CVs and cover letters for different and positions and institutions. RSVP here. 

On Wednesday, September 29, 12:30-1:30 p.m. (CT), Preparing for First-Round Interviews for Faculty and Postdoc Positions, will provide an overview of how to prepare for first-round. We’ll discuss some strategies to help you prepare for and excel at interviewing for university faculty postdoc positions. Among others, we’ll cover practical aspects to consider with Zoom or telephone interviews, what search committees are looking for, and how to prepare effectively for the most common questions. RSVP here. 

If you are looking to prepare for Campus Visits, join us on Wednesday, October 6, 12:30-1:30 p.m. (CT). We will discuss an overview of the campus visit process, how to prepare for on-campus interviews, and how to navigate social events like a group dinner with faculty. We will also discuss some tips and strategies for preparing and delivering your job talk. RSVP here. 

1:1 Advising Appointments 

Interested in discussing your job market strategy, workshopping your application materials, or preparing for an upcoming interview? Set up an advising appointment with an advisor on GRAD Gargoyle 

Your dedicated career advisor can help you think through your job market strategy and provide feedback on your CV, cover letter, research statement/proposal, and teaching statement. Simply select “CAREERS” in the scheduling interface and you will see available appointments with your advisor. 

Looking to prepare 1:1 for an upcoming interview or presentation? Choose “GRADTALK” in the appointment system and set up a meeting. 

To discuss questions related to diversity and inclusion, set up a “DIVERSITY” appointment and meet with Dana Bozeman, who will also be able to think about and review your diversity statement. 

Online Resources  

For information about academic job documents, check out the GRAD job document resources. If you’re thinking about interviews for faculty positions and postdocs, have a look at the interview resources, which also include links to different interview workshops. 


Questions about the academic job market and resources for applying for faculty positions and postdocs? Email Kathrin Kranz (  

The World Needs Humanists

Engage with PATHS (Professional Advancement and Training for Humanities Scholars) through Courses, Career Conversations, Networking Opportunities, and Career Treks

PATHS (Professional Advancement and Training for Humanities Scholars) is an NEH-funded initiative that prepares UChicago Ph.D. students in the humanities and humanistic social sciences to make an impact in the world. PATHS programs and resources help participants chart a course for their professional training toward careers in academia, industry, nonprofits, and government.PATHS Fall 2018 Programming at a Glance

  • Short Courses: These multipart thematic courses help you build vital professional skills. Examples include instruction in networking, conferencing, and digital literacy.
    • Building Social Connections: A Sociological Perspective  (Conferencing 101 Short Course #1) Wednesday, November 28, 5:00–6:15 p.m.
    •  “What Do You Work On?”: Starting Conversations at Conferences (Conferencing 101 Short Course #2) Tuesday, December 4, 5:00-6:15 p.m.
    • How to Deliver a Compelling Conference Presentation (Conferencing 101 Short Course #3) Thursday, December 6, 5:00–6:15 p.m.
  • Career Conversations: These exploratory sessions approach larger career questions (for example, “What Can I Do with My Humanities Ph.D?”) from a number of distinct perspectives. Often, we welcome guest speakers with extensive experience in the featured industry/profession to share knowledge and answer your questions—an invaluable experience.
  • Treks: Have you wondered what it would be like to work in a publishing house, a museum, a high school, or another place of work that interests you? Go and see! Treks are the perfect opportunity to visit spaces of work and engage in discussion with professionals and like-minded graduate students.
    • K-12 Career Exploration Trek to the University of Chicago Lab School, Monday, December 10, 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.

To receive updates about upcoming PATHS events, subscribe to the PATHS newsletter by emailing