Professional & personal development

This section describes the variety of resources available to graduate students for advice and counsel—whether for individual concerns, career planning, support for student groups on campus, or informal discussions about the day-to-day life of a graduate student—with folks “in the know.” Looking for even more resources? See the Professional development page on the MIT Student Resources site.

Upcoming events

To hear directly about many upcoming events, sign up for the Global Education and Career Development (GECD) Graduate Career News list and the Graduate Student Council Professional Development e-mail list.

 Become a graduate community fellow for 2015-16

Interested in joining a cadre of graduate students who work on projects and assignments that enhance graduate community in unique ways? Limited openings are still available for 2015-16 Graduate Community Fellows. Receive a monthly stipend while you gain experience. Positions will be filled on a rolling basis. Open positions include:

  • Violence Prevention and Response Programming Development
  • Graduate Orientation: position available for summer/fall 2016

For additional information, please see the positions website. Apply now!

Cover Letters

Thursday, February 4th
2:00 – 3:00pm
MIT Room 32-144

Come learn the essential components of a strong cover letter from a career expert as you prepare for upcoming career fairs. All GECD events are open to MIT undergraduates, graduate students, postdocs, and alumni. Advanced registration requested via CareerBridge.

Breaking the Mold Conference

Date: February 5th, 2016

Don’t miss the first conference of the Spring semester. Come join us for a half day Breaking The Mold conference on February 5 from 9 am to 2 pm at the MIT Media LabWe will pivot our focus from what institutions are currently doing to increase diversity in the workforce, to what they should be doing in the future. Hear from leading academic experts in public policy from both HKS and MIT on groundbreaking research they have been doing to increase diversity. Learn more about the conference or purchase tickets now!

European Career Fair

Date: February 6th, 2016

Registration for the MIT European Career Fair 2016 is now open until January 28. The European Career Fair (ECF) is an annual recruiting event at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology which is organized by the MIT European Club in partnership with the European Commission, the MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives, the German American Business Council,  and the German Academic Exchange Service. Our mission is to connect employers from all over Europe with the most talented students and young professionals in the US.

It is our 20th anniversary and the ECF will continue to serve the Boston area universities and colleges by providing opportunities for students at all levels to connect with European companies and non-profit organizations. This career fair is the largest of its kind in the United States with an average of 4000 submitted résumés and 100 companies from the Research, Technology and Finance/Business sector. Past participating companies are amongst others:

Bayer, Roche, BMW, Shell, Volkswagen, Siemens, McKinsey, Boston Consulting Group, Total, Audi, Novartis, Allianz, Deutsche Bank, Munich RE, IBM, Philips, Generali, Merck, BASF, SAP, Sennheiser, Thales Group and many more.

For questions contact:

MIT RoboCon Call for Presenters

Dates: February 12 and 13, 2016

The first annual MIT RoboCon will be held on MIT campus at the Stata Center on February 12 and 13, 2016. MIT RoboCon is a student-organized, student-run conference intended to foster technical cross-disciplinary interactions between students, postdocs, and other roboticists in the community. This is a great opportunity to meet other roboticists at MIT, start collaborations, and present your work to the robotics community. The conference will feature invited keynote talks, sessions for MIT robotics students and postdocs to present research highlights, and intimate breakout sessions to facilitate discussions about topics such as advice on finding a robotics job and the future of robotics.

On Saturday morning, we will also be hosting an informal Women in Robotics networking event. This morning session will be for those who identify as women and will give attendees a chance to meet other women in robotics in an informal setting. This event intends an inclusive definition of “woman;” we welcome trans women, genderqueer women, and non-binary people. A light breakfast will be provided. The small group sessions later in the day will be focused on discussion and are open to all genders.

MIT RoboCon is primarily targeted for robotics researchers at MIT and would not be possible without participation and content from YOU! We strongly encourage you to share your research results with your MIT colleagues through a talk, poster, or demo. Please indicate your interest to do so via the presenter registration form by February 1, 2016. General registration is open until February 8, 2016.

Runway Startup Postdoc Program

Application deadline February 15, 2016

Recently completed your PhD and want to harness your deep tech expertise to start a company?  Want to do it in New York City and get funding from day one?  If so, consider the Runway Startup Postdoc Program. Runway provides an impressive package valued at $150,000 that includes a salary, research budget, housing allowance, space, mentoring, business education, unique and simple IP model and more. In addition, the Startup Postdoc receives significant benefits & corporate support valued at $320,000.

Registration for the fourth cohort in the startup postdoc program is now open.  More details and the Call for Applications are available here.


Multiple dates for panels

Every year Versatile PhD runs an online series of panel discussions in the asynchronous discussion forums on the site. Each discussion focuses on a specific non-academic career that is open to PhDs, and features 4–6 PhDs or ABDs currently working in that career.

Panel discussions coming up in this academic year:

Nov. 16–20: “University Administration for STEM” in the STEM forum
Jan. 25–29: “Careers in Business” in the Humanities/Social Science forum
Feb. 22–26: “Careers in Software Engineering” in the STEM forum
Mar. 14–18: “Careers in Technical Writing” in the Humanities/Social Science forum

Visit this website to access the Versatile PhD online community.


Application deadline February 29, 2016

Applications are now being accepted for the 2016 Summer Internship Program for graduate students at the Congressional Budget Office. CBO summer internships provide excellent opportunities to experience and observe the budget process and policymaking at the federal level. The internships are located in Washington, D.C. Interns contribute to CBO’s work in program areas such as budget and tax policy, health care, national defense, the environment, education, retirement and other income assistance, regulation, and public investment.

Students should be pursuing graduate academic programs in economics, public policy, health policy, financial management, mathematics, statistics, or a related program. At this time, undergraduate students are not being considered. US citizens and non-citizens who are permanent residents of the United States seeking citizenship are eligible for consideration. Before applying, non-citizens should refer to the agency’s information on citizenship requirements to determine employment eligibility.

Students must submit a cover letter, resume, contact information for two references (academic and/or employment), and an unofficial copy of transcripts which includes coursework for the spring semester (first-year graduate students MUST submit both an undergraduate transcript and a graduate transcript). A complete application must be submitted through CBO’s online application by the deadline of February 29, 2016 to be considered (no exceptions). Graduate students interested in doing policy work this summer are strongly encouraged to apply.

cambridge to cambridge (C2C)

Dates: March 4-5th, 2016

Cambridge 2 Cambridge (C2C) is a two-part international cybersecurity challenge between MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab (CSAIL) and the University of Cambridge. C2C will engage participants to explore creative ways to combat increased global cyber attacks, influence policy trends and develop products unimaginable until now! C2C will feature two parts: a team-based ‘capture-the-flag’ style hackathon and a “Shark Tank” format start-up competition. The hackathon will include teams of students from MIT and Cambridge University who will compete in a 24-hour session at CSAIL beginning at 5pm on March 4, 2016. The event will be comprised of a graduated set of exercises in binary exploitation, web security, reverse engineering, cryptography and forensics in a scored CTF competition. There will also be several open interactive activities as well. The kick-off reception for C2C will be held at MIT’s Ray and Maria Stata Center in Cambridge, MA, at 2:00 p.m., hosted by MIT’s CyberSecurity@CSAIL to support initiatives advancing cybersecurity technologies. Winners from both competitions will be announced on March 5, 2016, and prizes of over $70,000 will be awarded! The event timeline is as follows:

March 4:

2:00 p.m. Kick-Off event

5:00 p.m. 24-hour Hackathon begins

March 5:

9:00 a.m. Introduction to Start-up competition

10:00 a.m. Presentations begin

5:00 p.m. Hackathon concludes

5:30 p.m. Winners from start-up competition and hackathon are announced

6:00 p.m. Reception

If you are interested in attending either event, register for the Cambridge 2 Cambridge Start-Up Presentations and Hackathon Conclusion and/or register for the Cambridge 2 Cambridge Kick-Off Event.

Teach at Tufts University Next Fall

Application deadline: March 11, 2016

The Experimental College invites you to be a Visiting Lecturer for the Fall 2016 semester. You will have the opportunity to design undergraduate elective courses
, explore interdisciplinary subjects
, examine contemporary issues and ideas, use innovative teaching methods
, and teach evening classes. Advanced graduate students are always looking for opportunities to teach in their area of expertise, and the Experimental College at Tufts University is a place where that can happen. Up to twenty-five instructors are selected each semester to teach at the Experimental College, and they can attest to the unique and rewarding experience of designing and teaching a course to highly motivated undergraduate students.

The ExCollege offers a full range of largely new courses every semester­ – on an elective basis – to Tufts undergraduates. The courses are intended to provide an alternative to the traditional departmental curricula by presenting interdisciplinary or contemporary subjects. Classes are usually kept to less than twenty students and are highly discussion and participation oriented. An applicant whose proposal is approved will become a Visiting Lecturer for the semester, will receive a stipend, and will have access to university facilities.

Advanced graduate students and adjunct faculty are encouraged to apply online by March 11, 2016.

Data Science fellowship opportunity

March 21 – May 13, 2016

The Data Incubator is an intensive 8 week fellowship that prepares Masters, PhDs, and postdocs in STEM + social science fields seeking industry careers as data scientists. The program is free for Fellows and supported by sponsorships from dozens of employers across multiple industries. In response to the overwhelming interest in our earlier sessions, we will be holding another fellowship.

There will be both an in-person (in NYC, DC, SF) and online section of the fellowship. There is a common application for both the online and in-person sections. All sections will be from 2016-03-21 to 2016-05-13. Anyone within one year of graduating from a masters or PhD program or who has already obtained a masters or PhD is welcome to apply. Applications from international students are welcome. Everyone else is encouraged to sign up for a future session.


Learn more about Data Science: Sign up for our Free Online Miniclass, Data Science in 30 Minutes. We’ll demo some of the most common techniques used in industry, from clustering to streaming, on Wednesday, January 6, 2015 from 5:30 PM to 6 PM.  RSVP here to receive a free invite:  Space is limited.

boston startup job fair

April 5th, 2016

Join us on  April 5th, 2016 at the Microsoft NERD Center (1 Memorial Drive, Cambridge, MA 02139).

The Startup Job Fair has become a nationwide event resource to connect a region’s hottest startups with top talented job seekers over the past six years. The Boston Startup Job Fair aims to connect talented job seekers with the best Boston area startups.  This event will bring together undergraduates, graduate students, and seasoned professionals to one event exclusively for startups.

Register now! There is a $5 registration fee.

MIT-SUTD Collaboration and LeaderShape Institute

May 31 – June 5, 2016

The LeaderShape Institute is an intense 6-day leadership program guaranteed to expand your skills in leading with integrity. The Leadership Institute is interested in recruiting Cluster Facilitators and an On-Site Coordinator for May 31, 2016 – June 5, 2016. This is a wonderful opportunity to work with students from MIT and the Singapore University of Technology and Design. Room and board provided plus competitive compensation.

The On-Site Coordinators serve as an important member of The LeaderShape Institute team. They will carry out logistical and conference management tasks which are crucial to the success of the program. The On-Site Coordinators will work alongside the facilitators to help ensure success while staying one step ahead of the curriculum so that all of the details are organized at the beginning of each program piece. He or she works in partnership with Lead and Cluster Facilitators to ensure the success of the program and is responsible for organizing the materials for both faculty and participants. If you are interested, please contact with your resume.

You can read about our latest alumni working at the New York Times or Palantir.  For additional information, checkout our blog, Venture Beat article, or Harvard Business Review piece.