Career Strategy Fellowships Study Abroad Summer Session CAREER LINK

PhD Pathways

You are here

Your PhD has equipped you not only with specialized expertise in your discipline, but also with transferable skills that may be applied to a range of careers. At Yale, there are many ways to learn about the diverse paths that PhDs and others have taken outside of the academy, and to explore opportunities open to PhDs.  Start by taking advantage of these resources:


  • GSAS Alumni Spotlight Series: Alums describe their path to a fulfilling non-faculty career and how their Yale PhD contributed to their success.
  • VersatilePhD: Concerned about the academic job market? Thinking about non-academic careers? OCS subscribes to this resource that demystifies non-academic careers and reveals many professions that can utilize the skills you are developing in graduate school.
  • ImaginePhD: Take advantage of this free, online career exploration and planning tool specifically for PhD students and postdoctoral scholars in the humanities and social sciences!  
  • Carpe Careers:  Experienced career advisors from universities in the US and Canada share a wealth of valuable advice for PhDs and postdocs in this blog published by Inside Higher Ed.
  • OCS Events: OCS offers extensive programming designed to expose students to a broad spectrum of careers, including career education panels, employer information sessions, and industry networking events. See the Yale Career Link for a full calendar and to register. 
  • Yale Career Network: Interested in connecting with a Yale alum to explore career interests and learn more about a particular industry or company? The Yale Career Network is searchable database of 20,000+ alums across all Yale schools interested in networking with fellow alums and students.  
  • Common Good and Creative Careers: Interested in Nonprofit, Government, Education, Arts (Architecture/Design, Entertainment, Fine and Visual, Literary, Theater and Performing) or Communications careers? Take advantage of the special programming and advising offered through this OCS initiative.
  • Where Do I Go from Yale?: The Graduate School Alumni Association’s annual career mentoring workshop every Spring showcases career paths taken by graduate school alums, in academia and beyond, help graduate students think creatively about turning their PhDs into meaningful careers. 
  • Careers, Life and Yale: By sharing career and life experiences, alums help students develop career plans and life skills. These events offer insight on a variety of career paths, along with networking, mentoring opportunities, interviewing and job search skills.

For additional information on career paths, employers and industries, visit the Resource Database to search discipline-specific resources available online.  A sampling is listed below.

Resources for Humanities and Social Sciences PhDs

Get started with ImaginePhD — a free, online career exploration and planning tool specifically for PhD students and postdoctoral scholars in the humanities and social sciences! ImaginePhD users are able to:

  • assess their career-related skills, interests, and values
  • explore careers paths appropriate to their disciplines
  • map out steps for degree completion alongside career and professional development

Developed by Graduate Career Consortium member experts from over 50 universities, ImaginePhD offers a unique platform that teaches PhDs about popular job sectors, search strategies, and how to transfer skills across settings. Like the related GCC member project myIDP, with 100,000+ users, ImaginePhD has the potential to transform PhD career planning.  

In addition, take a look at these resources:


Resources for STEM PhDs