STEM Peer Professionalization Groups

The OCS STEM Peer Professionalization Group (PPG) is a peer mentoring program, which pairs small groups of graduate students from STEM-related fields who are interested in actively developing their professional and career plans. This program combines small group meetings with large on-campus and off-campus events each semester to provide a format that is flexible for the busy schedule of graduate students.

Goals

  • Consistently engage graduate students in career and professional development activities
  • Increase communication, networking, and resource/knowledge sharing amongst graduate students
  • Advance students’ career preparedness and skills, including career awareness, professional narratives, informational interviewing, networking, and more
  • Provide a format that is both flexible and effective
  • Increase the awareness of the career resources around campus

Outcomes

  • Self-assessment of skills, interests, and values
  • Identified career interests and goals
  • Abilities and opportunities to build up your peer and professional social networks
  • Interview and job application skills
  • Confidence to tackle the non-academic job market

How it Works

  • One Topic of Focus for each meeting, through September to December during the fall semester
  • Meeting schedule and content are both flexible based on the career interests of groups
  • The Topic of Focus is released on this webpage, and simultaneously through emails and OCS Yale uConnect
  • ~1 hour of individual activities related to each topic, to be completed before peer group meetings
  • ~1 hour peer professionalization group meeting with additional group activities and discussion
  • Attend at least 2 additional workshops, career lab, panels, treks, or other career-related activities per semester, preferably with group members

How to Sign Up and be Matched in a Group

  • Sign-ups on Yale uConnect.
  • Group members will be matched based on the following criteria in order: career interest, time preferences.
  • A point of contact person is designated upon group formation. The point of contact is mainly responsible for scheduling small group meetings and logging activity.

Tips

  • Scheduling group meetings: the best practice is to set a recurring date monthly that works for everyone (e.g. 4-5 pm the last Monday afternoon every other week).
  • Group leadership and cooperation: point of contact is responsible for holding the group together, but definitively every group member’s commitment and enthusiasm is the key to make the most out of this program.
  • Group communication: Zoom is recommended to facilitate small group meetings.

Voices from PPG Members:

“Having a small group of like-minded individuals to bounce things off of was the best part of this program. It made not knowing what I want to do after Yale feel more okay.”

“Our group is very supportive and I feel very comfortable sharing confusion, experience, questions, and thoughts with my group members.”

“We were very well matched in terms of interests. In fact, we formed a team for the YGCC (Yale Graduate Consulting Club) case competition (with 2 other people outside our group) and won!”

After completing the program, ALL members who participated in the satisfaction survey said they prefer to work in a group than individually!

Career Resources

Community Spotlights

  • Associate Director and Innovation Program Leader Corporate Innovation at Bayer
  • Industry Analyst GE Appliances' Silicon Valley Innovation Center
  • Research Scientist Merck Research Laboratories
  • Chief Operating Officer NousCom
  • Associate Consultant ‎Adivo Associates LLC
  • Medical Writer Infusion Communications (Ashfield Healthcare Communications)
  • Data Scientist and Software Engineer HERE Technologies
  • Withrow Farny Curator of Vertebrate Paleontology and Associate Vice President for Science & Research Cincinnati Museum Center
  • Science Policy Analyst IDA Science and Technology Policy Institute (STPI)
  • Science Data Librarian Stanford University Libraries

CONTACT & LOCATION

Phone
(203) 432-0800
Address

55 Whitney Avenue, 3rd Fl.
New Haven, CT 06510

SERVICE HOURS

  Academic Year Summer Hours
M 8:30am - 5pm 8:30am - 4:30pm
T 8:30am - 5pm 8:30am - 4:30pm
W 8:30am - 5pm 8:30am - 4:30pm
TH 8:30am - 5pm 8:30am - 4:30pm
F 8:30am - 5pm 8:30am - 4:30pm

The office is closed weekends, holidays, and recess days.