BioSurvival Skills

The BioSurvival Skills program helps students and postdocs develop skills that they will need to succeed in their future careers.  Past topics have included grant writing, presentations, and CV writing.  Is there any skill you would like help developing?  Contact Pam Carpentier.

Upcoming Events

Job Search Series

Mondays, 10am, McGaw 1-401 (Chicago)

Join BioProfessionals and Northwestern Career Advancement as we take you through the steps of searching for a job outside academics. In four sessions, we will cover Exploring Careers Outside Academics (Feb 26), Networking and Informational Interviewing (March 19), Cover Letters and Resumes (April 23) and In-Person Interviews (May 21).

Past Events

CVs, Resumes and Cover Letters

Tuesday, November 14, 4-5:30, Pancoe 3103 (Evanston)

BioProfessionals is pleased to present a BioSurvival Skills Workshop on Cover Letter and Resume Writing.  The workshop will be led by Elysse Longiotti, Assistant Director, Student Career Advising at Northwestern Career Advancement.  Whether you are about to start your job search or a first year graduate student, it is always a good time to make sure your CV or resume is polished and up-to-date.  If you have never thought about what you would write in your cover letter, now is a good time to start.  Elysse will discuss the best practices for drafting cover letters and resumes, drawing on real life examples. Please RSVP if you plan to attend to Deborah Klos Dehring (

Tips for Writing a Competitive NRSA

Wednesday, November 1, 2018, 4-5:30, Ward 5-230 (Chicago)

Sally McIver, PhD (Assistant Director of NUIN) will present tips and guiadance for preparing a competitive NRSA application.  The session will end with a Q&A with faculty member Geoff Swanson, PhD, who has served on NRSA study sections.

Exploring STEM Careers

Tuesday, October 3, 2017, 4-5:30pm Pancoe 3103 (Evanston)

Whether you have planned out your career path or haven’t started to think about your options, this workshop is for you!  We will walk through the variety of databases you have access to in order to conduct a targeted search based on industries and organizations of interest. Learn how to access various industry-specific career guides and thousands of company profiles to help you answer questions like: Who are the companies to be aware of? What are the current industry employment trends? What are the typical roles available to someone with your level of experience? This workshop will be led by Elysse Longiotti from Northwestern Career Advancement.  Wondering if any of the upcoming BioOpportunities featured careers might be a good fit for you?  Come and learn more!

Job Search Series:  Interviews

Wednesday, June 21, 2017, 4-5:30, Gray Seminar Room (Chicago campus)

We'll talk about ways to prepare for and ace your in-person interview.

Job Search Series:  Resumes and Cover Letters

Wednesday, May 17, 2017, 4-5:30, Gray Seminar Room (Chicago campus)

We will use real life examples of resumes and cover letters tailored to jobs outside academics to show you how to emphasize your fit for new positions.

Working With (Not Against) Your Data

Monday, May 15 and Monday, May 22, 2017, 9-11am, Cook 3118A/B (Evanston campus)

This two day workshop will provide best practices of collecting, analyzing, and managing your data in a reproducible manner.  Discussions led by Dr. Erik Andersen, Molecular Biosciences and Dr. Leah Welty, Biostatistics Collaboration Center.

Job Search Series:  Networking and Informational Interviews

Wednesday, April 19, 2017, 4-5:30, Gray Seminar Room (Chicago campus)

We will discuss tips for networking in a variety of contexts (professional meetings, networking events, online), as well as how to land and conduct informational interviews.

Job Search Series:  Exploring Careers Outside Academics

Wednesday, March 22, 2017, 4-5, Gray Seminar Room (Chicago campus)

We will discuss the types of jobs available to PhDs outside academics, how to research them, and how to find what might be a good fit for you.

Tips on Writing a Competitive NRSA

Tuesday, November 1, 2016, 3:30-5, Baldwin Auditorium (Chicago campus)

Sally McIver (Assistant Director of NUIN) will discuss tips for writing your NRSA fellowship applications.  She will be joined for a Q&A by faculty member Geoff Swanson, who serves on NRSA study sections.

Tailoring Your Application for the Job Description

Wednesday, June 1, 2016, 9:30-11, Kellerman Classroom (McGaw 2-322, Chicago campus)

Mearah Quinn-Brauner (Northwestern Career Advancement), Kristen Mighty (Office of Postdoctoral Affairs) and Pam Carpentier (DGP) will show students how to tailor a resume and CV based on the job description.  This will be a hands on workshop using a real CV and job descriptions.

Informational Interviewing: Researching Careers for PhDs

Monday, March 21, 2016, 4-5pm in Searle Seminar Room (Chicago)

Presented by Mearah Quinn-Brauner from Northwestern Career Advancement

At this workshop, you will learn about informational interviewing, a method of exploring careers and connecting with people and get pratice using Linked In to find and reach out to peole in career fields of interest to you.

Networking Workshop

Monday, December 7, 2015, 12-1 in Cook 3118 (Evanston)

Presented by Mearah Quinn-Brauner from Northwestern Career Advancement

Cover Letters and Resumes

Thursday, November 19, 2015, 3:30-5, McGaw 2-322 (Kellerman classroom)

Come learn about drafting cover letters and resumes for non-academic jobs from Mearah Quinn-Brauner, PhD, Assistant Director, Student Career Advising.  Learn from real examples of materials that landed PhDs their jobs outside of academia.

Networking Workshop

Thursday, June 4, 2015, 4-6pm in Lurie Cafe

Presented by Mearah Quinn-Brauner from Northwestern Career Advancement.

Negotiations Workshop

March 20, 2015, 4pm in Ward 5-230

You have a job offer, now what? In this workshop on negotiation we will discuss strategies for advocating for yourself in an informed and effective way. Topics covered will include determining your “worth,” negotiating things other than salary, and negotiation etiquette.  Presented by Mearah Quinn-Brauner at Northwestern Career Advancement.

Tips for Getting Your Paper Published

January 22, 2015 4-5
Searle Seminar Room (Chicago)
Pamela Carpentier, Assistant Director of the Driskill Graduate Program and former associate editor at The Journal of Cell Biology, will discuss choosing a journal, writing a cover letter, communicating with editors, and more tips for getting your paper published.

Writing Fellowships for Foundations

November 12, 2014, 1:30-2:30
Cook 3118 (Evanston)
Michael Kelly from Foundation Relations will discuss targeting fellowship applications to foundations.

December 11, 2014, 4-5
Gray Seminar Room, Lurie Buidling (Chicago)
Traci Galbaugh from Foundation Relations will discuss targeting fellowship applications to foundations.

Tips for Writing a Competitive NRSA Application

October 28, 2014, 4-6 pm
Baldwin Auditorium, Lurie Building (Chicago)

November 4, 4-6pm
Pancoe 1-401 (Evanston)

Sally McIver, Assistant Director of NUIN, presents tips for writing your NRSA application with a special emphasis on writing a training plan.  She will be joined by faculty who have served on NRSA study sections to discuss their experiences.

Workshops with David Anderson

Resume Building and Cover Letters

Geared towards people preparing to find a job soon and thus will focus on how to translate existing skills into a resume for an industry job.

October 9, 2014
9:30-11 Pancoe 4103, Evanston

October 10, 2014
11:30-1 Baldwin Auditorium, Lurie Building, Chicago

Developing Skills for Industry

October 9, 2014
1:30-3, Pancoe 4103, Evanston

October 10, 2014
11:30-1 Baldwin Auditorium, Lurie Building, Chicago