Graduate school doesn’t last forever, which means that as you approach your defense date you must also consider how to navigate an impending job market. For students interested in research careers, a logical next-step may be to acquire a post-doc, which affords more time after school to expand research skills. Although many psychology students now choose a post-doc as their next career move, the specifics as to how to actually land one are often unclear.
Because this process doesn’t need to be as mysterious as it usually is, below we’ve compiled some tips to help students navigate the post-doc market. Since we’ve already written on the topic of landing a health services psychology (HSP)-oriented post-doc, here we cater more to readers specifically interested in research-specific options.
It is easy to be caught up in all of the excitement of convention; who wouldn’t be excited to meet their idol, talk about their research, or learn a new practice technique? While it is easy to get caught up in all of the running around (sometimes quite literally, especially if you do the Ray’s Race 5K), it is important to invest in self-care throughout convention.
Here are a few tips for self-care so you can impress the socks off of your new networks, rock your presentation, and clear your mind to learn optimally:
Plan ahead: The best way to combat stress is to plan ahead. Use the convention app to plan out what programs you want to see. Furthermore, reserve time for rest.
Build in some down time: Four days of psychology is a lot. Your hard work should be balanced with a little indulgence. Take a nap, watch some Netflix, and explore the city! This will reinvigorate you to be at the top of your game when you participate at convention.
Don’t forget to build in time for friends too: Convention for me is an opportunity to bond with my cohort members and new friends I have made along the way. There are a lot of great food options or activities to do with friends. Going solo this year? Stop by the APAGS social to meet other graduate students.
By Kate Hibbard-Gibbons, MA, Counseling Psychology Doctoral Student, Western Michigan University
“The Running Psychologists Annual “Ray’s Race” 5k Run and Walk is back again to celebrate its 39th year! Ray’s Race is an APA tradition that was started by former APA President and CEO, Ray Fowler. It is a great opportunity for getting some exercise during the convention, networking with colleagues, and seeing a beautiful part of Washington, DC. This year the race will be held at Anacostia Park! The gradPSYCH blog has featured a few posts regarding the importance of self-care for graduate students. Ray’s Race presents a wonderful opportunity for self-care and to get re-energized! Graduate students have truly enjoyed this race and are excited to share their experiences. Please read a couple of these experiences: Continue reading →
The APA Convention brings together hundreds of established psychologists, professionals and students to make meaningful connections, learn and grow. As you prepare for the upcoming convention, now is the time to start preparing.
Since the convention is fast approaching, take the opportunity to identify your goals and set an agenda to get the most out of your experience. Here are a few tips to help you connect and grow your network at the APA Convention, or any other professional setting for that matter:
Pump up your social media profile. Make sure your LinkedIn profile is updated with a professional headshot picture. Having your profile with the most-up-to-date information will ensure you can best promote your experience and accomplishments. Use Twitter or Facebook to follow and meet the speakers and workshop presenters before you attend. Also, as you meet people at the convention, you can tag them and make positive comments about workshops, discussions and the convention itself.
Update your CV or resume. Take advantage of sprucing up your CV or resume with current professional experience and research. The convention offers a space for you to distribute your CV or resume during the Career Fair hub, within the Exhibit hall. During this interactive experience, you will be able to engage potential employers and seek professional development opportunities.
Create business cards. Having business cards with your contact information may prove to be beneficial. Although, some people may prefer to enter information into their mobile devices, you should plan to have a business card available. Make sure to keep the design simple and professional with the essentials of your name, email address, phone number, and the name of your school and/or position. Sharing your business card will make a lasting impression.
Practice your “elevator pitch”. As you meet others while networking, you will be asked questions such as: who are you? what do you do? why are you attending the APA Convention? So, rehearsing your answers ahead of time will help you to prepare your thoughts. Going a step further, practice introducing yourself to people in the mirror. Be friendly and limit your introduction to a brief 30 seconds. Since presenters and others may be time-limited, there won’t be much of a chance to chat.
Attending the APA Convention is essential to staying in touch with current industry trends, networking, and getting face-to-face interaction that social media can’t replace. Therefore, if you are going to spend the money to attend, plan in advance to ensure you’ll get the most out of your time at the event.
See you there!
Editor’s Note: Check out these previous posts about attending the 2017 APA Convention.
It’s time for the next installment of Dear me, future psychologist, a gradPSYCH Blog exclusive in which a prominent psychologist writes a letter to his/her 16-year-old self. We hope you enjoy these letters and glean some invaluable wisdom and guidance as you decide whether to enter graduate school in psychology, as you navigate the challenges of graduate school, and as you make decisions about your career and life.
This letter is from John C. Norcross, PhD, ABPP, an internationally recognized authority on clinical psychology and psychotherapy. Dr. Norcross is Distinguished Professor of Psychology at the University of Scranton, Clinical Professor at The Commonwealth Medical College, and a board-certified clinical psychologist. He has published more than 400 scholarly publications and 20 books, including the 5-volume APA Handbook of Clinical Psychology, Psychotherapy Relationships that Work, Insider’s Guide to Graduate Programs in Clinical & Counseling Psychology, and Systems of Psychotherapy: A Transtheoretical Analysis, now in its 8th edition. He served as president of several APA divisions and international organizations, receiving multiple professional awards, such as APA’s Distinguished Career Contributions to Education & Training Award, Pennsylvania Professor of the Year from the Carnegie Foundation, and election to the National Academies of Practice. For more info, please visit Dr. Norcross’s website.