Proposal Title

Preparing Humanities PhDs for Academic and Professional Success

Start Date

23-3-2018 9:15 AM

End Date

23-3-2018 10:15 AM

Location

RM 460

Author(s) Bio

Chella Vaidyanathan is the European/World History and Philosophy Librarian at the Robert W. Woodruff Library of Emory University. Prior to joining Emory, she was the Curator of 19th-21st Century Rare Books and Manuscripts in the Department of Special Collections and Archives at the Sheridan Libraries of Johns Hopkins University and also the Academic Liaison Librarian for History, Anthropology, Africana Studies, Latin American Studies, and Islamic Studies (2010-2016). From 2007 to 2010, she worked as the History, Political Science, and Government Documents Librarian at the University of Miami. Erica Bruchko is the United States History and African American Studies Librarian at Emory University’s Robert W. Woodruff Library, a position that she has held for the past seven years. She has a BA in History and Anthropology from the University of South Carolina and a PhD in History from Emory University. Scott Libson received his PhD in history from Emory University in 2016. His research focused on American Protestant missions and global philanthropy. Prior to graduate studies, he was Assistant Head of Collection Management in the Columbia University Libraries. He has also worked in archives and in a digital scholarship center. He holds a bachelor’s degree in archaeology from Columbia University a master’s degree in church history from Yale University. Louis Fagnan is a PhD candidate in History at Emory University. His research focuses on politics and race in the post-Civil War Deep South. He has a BA and MA from McGill University.

Presenter Status

Academic Librarian

Presentation Type

50 minutes (Open format, explain in Description below)

Description

Recent efforts within academia increasingly focus on developing programs to transform professional development and career planning within humanities Ph.D. programs. Scholarly associations such as the American Historical Association (AHA) and Modern Language Association (MLA) took initiatives to help students build skill-sets that meet the demands of various job markets not traditionally associated with humanities PhDs. The 2013 AHA report, The Many Careers of History PhDs: A Study of the Job Outcomes, Spring 2013, stated that history PhDs worked in wide range of professions including law firms, government offices, publishing houses, libraries, etc. [https://www.historians.org/jobs-and-professional-development/career-diversity-for-historians/career-diversity-resources/the-many-careers-of-history-phds]. Granting institutions have likewise committed resources to transforming graduate education and making the Ph.D. more versatile with the “Mellon Humanities PhD Interventions Project” [http://news.emory.edu/stories/2017/02/er_mellon_humanities_phd_grant/campus.html]. Besides this new project, the Laney Graduate School funds the long-standing Woodruff Library Fellowship program. This program helps PhDs gain practical work experience related to their areas of interest and subject expertise within the Woodruff Library, Emory Center for Digital Scholarship, and Rose Library. Often subject librarians and, in general, the libraries, are overlooked as potential partners in this crucial conversation. This panel explores how the fellowship program and a pilot initiative by two history subject librarians support graduate students on the job market. The fellowship program helped advanced graduate students gain a wide variety of skills suitable for non-traditional job markets. With the launching of the new initiative in January 2017, the history librarians worked closely with graduate students helping them in diversifying their skill-sets to succeed academically as well as professionally. Their outreach efforts included conducting professionalization workshops, meeting individually with graduate students to brainstorm potential career opportunities, setting up mock interviews, and providing meaningful feedback on their professional portfolios. The end goal of this pilot initiative is to help the Ph.D. candidates apply their subject expertise and research skills in both traditional and non-traditional career settings. In the process, students identify and develop new skills that make them more competitive in the current job market. Part of this presentation will also focus on the experiences of Emory history PhDs who have benefited from the Woodruff Library Fellowship program and the pilot initiative led by Emory University’s history librarians. They will chronicle their work with librarians and archivists, the skills that they acquired through these partnerships, and the practical aspects of preparing for non-traditional careers. They will also look back on the totality of their graduate studies and identify circumstances during coursework, teaching, and dissertation writing that either expanded or narrowed their perception of career possibilities. As librarians become more involved in the professionalization of humanities PhDs, these will be ideal moments for intervention. After the panel presentation, attendees will be able to:

  1. Identify similar outreach opportunities on their campus
  1. Brainstorm practical ways for creating meaningful partnerships with university administrators, faculty, and graduate students
  2. Initiate new programs for supporting efforts to diversify professional opportunities for humanities PhDs

Comments

Professional development for humanities Ph.D. students is a hot topic thanks to increased focus from scholarly associations, universities, and foundations. This panel explores how Emory University’s Woodruff Library Fellowship program and a pilot initiative by two history subject librarians support graduate students on the job market. The fellowship program has helped advanced graduate students gain skills in various fields. The new initiative, begun in January 2017, helps Ph.D. students diversify their skill-sets to succeed academically as well as professionally. The end goal is to help graduate students understand the value of their subject expertise and research skills in various settings while also identifying and developing new skills to make them more competitive in the current job market.

Part of this presentation will also focus on the experiences of Emory history PhDs who have benefited from the Woodruff Library Fellowship program and the pilot initiative. They will chronicle their work with librarians and archivists, the skills that they acquired through these partnerships, and the practical aspects of preparing for non-traditional careers.

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Mar 23rd, 9:15 AM Mar 23rd, 10:15 AM

Preparing Humanities PhDs for Academic and Professional Success

RM 460

Recent efforts within academia increasingly focus on developing programs to transform professional development and career planning within humanities Ph.D. programs. Scholarly associations such as the American Historical Association (AHA) and Modern Language Association (MLA) took initiatives to help students build skill-sets that meet the demands of various job markets not traditionally associated with humanities PhDs. The 2013 AHA report, The Many Careers of History PhDs: A Study of the Job Outcomes, Spring 2013, stated that history PhDs worked in wide range of professions including law firms, government offices, publishing houses, libraries, etc. [https://www.historians.org/jobs-and-professional-development/career-diversity-for-historians/career-diversity-resources/the-many-careers-of-history-phds]. Granting institutions have likewise committed resources to transforming graduate education and making the Ph.D. more versatile with the “Mellon Humanities PhD Interventions Project” [http://news.emory.edu/stories/2017/02/er_mellon_humanities_phd_grant/campus.html]. Besides this new project, the Laney Graduate School funds the long-standing Woodruff Library Fellowship program. This program helps PhDs gain practical work experience related to their areas of interest and subject expertise within the Woodruff Library, Emory Center for Digital Scholarship, and Rose Library. Often subject librarians and, in general, the libraries, are overlooked as potential partners in this crucial conversation. This panel explores how the fellowship program and a pilot initiative by two history subject librarians support graduate students on the job market. The fellowship program helped advanced graduate students gain a wide variety of skills suitable for non-traditional job markets. With the launching of the new initiative in January 2017, the history librarians worked closely with graduate students helping them in diversifying their skill-sets to succeed academically as well as professionally. Their outreach efforts included conducting professionalization workshops, meeting individually with graduate students to brainstorm potential career opportunities, setting up mock interviews, and providing meaningful feedback on their professional portfolios. The end goal of this pilot initiative is to help the Ph.D. candidates apply their subject expertise and research skills in both traditional and non-traditional career settings. In the process, students identify and develop new skills that make them more competitive in the current job market. Part of this presentation will also focus on the experiences of Emory history PhDs who have benefited from the Woodruff Library Fellowship program and the pilot initiative led by Emory University’s history librarians. They will chronicle their work with librarians and archivists, the skills that they acquired through these partnerships, and the practical aspects of preparing for non-traditional careers. They will also look back on the totality of their graduate studies and identify circumstances during coursework, teaching, and dissertation writing that either expanded or narrowed their perception of career possibilities. As librarians become more involved in the professionalization of humanities PhDs, these will be ideal moments for intervention. After the panel presentation, attendees will be able to:

  1. Identify similar outreach opportunities on their campus
  1. Brainstorm practical ways for creating meaningful partnerships with university administrators, faculty, and graduate students
  2. Initiate new programs for supporting efforts to diversify professional opportunities for humanities PhDs