The second-ever 2018 Scientists Exploring non-Academic caReer CHoices (SEARCH) Symposium, to be held on April 21st in Lawrence, Kansas, is a collaborative effort between the Molecular Biosciences (MB) and Ecology & Evolutionary Biology (EEB) Graduate Student Organizations (GSOs) at the University of Kansas. This collaboration was born from a common desire of students in both departments to learn about career opportunities for PhDs outside of traditional academia.
The three goals of the SEARCH Symposium are to:
1) Inform trainees of the diversity of science careers by hosting scientists in diverse occupations including policy, biotechnology/industry, science writing, and government/law.
2) Prepare trainees for non-academic careers by discussing professional skills that students can develop while in graduate school or during postdoctoral training.
3) Foster connections between trainees and local scientists through a networking event featuring companies seeking advanced-degree job applicants.
To accomplish these goals, the MB and EEB GSOs are inviting over a dozen scientists to speak as part of an all-day symposium at KU. An expected 150 participants will have the opportunity to attend at no cost. Many career fairs and job search/training seminars are geared toward undergraduates, and this symposium aims to fulfill these goals in a manner tailored specifically to graduate students. The SEARCH symposium will focus on careers available to those with advanced degrees generally in biological sciences, but many similar careers options are applicable to broader science-related fields, such as health/science policy, patent law, government/independent research, and science writing. Graduate students and post-doctoral researchers from any science-related field are welcome!
As one of our objectives is to foster connections between graduate students and bioscience industry, a networking session will be held during the SEARCH symposium to help facilitate these interactions. This networking hour will host local science and technology companies with the hope that these businesses will attract and retain talented and passionate scientists and help expand the bioscience presence in the greater Kansas City area.
Together, the career diversity represented by area companies and more than a dozen speakers at our symposium will enlighten graduate students to the numerous science careers available and help to put them on the path to be successful scientists after graduation. Help support this opportunity for students!