Postdoctoral Fellows are among the most active researchers at York University and are a vital part of our community. In addition to the mentorship of supervisors and other faculty members, the Faculty of Graduate Studies (FGS) offers professional development opportunities, events, and resources to Postdoctoral scholars that enrich their professional development and help build networks on campus.
Postdoctoral Fellows can be proactive about their future careers by taking advantage of the Graduate and Postdoctoral Professional Skills (GPPS) program. This convenient tool hosts a variety of resources, which help postdocs grow and meet their career plans and goals. GPPS offers support in six broad areas: Career Exploration and Planning; Communication; Health and Wellness; Managing Time and Resources; Research Dissemination; and Teaching. The opportunities and resources available in the different areas help postdocs gain a well-rounded experience at York as well as obtain a set of robust development opportunities, including help with coordinating research projects, navigating publication opportunities, securing funding, and much more.
The workshops and resources offered by GPPS can be organized and kept track of through the Individualized Development Plan (IDP). The IDP is a useful tool, which prompts postdocs to start strategizing about the next steps within and beyond the academic world. The easily accessible framework encourages active participation in professional skills training and career management by motivating Postdoctoral researchers to conduct a holistic review of their current expertise and identify future short-term and long-term goals. The development of the plan is often a collaborative process that draws on the knowledge and feedback from supervisors and colleagues at the university. By sharing the IDP with others, postdocs can gain insight into how the skills acquired as part of their position at York may translate into other contexts.
Additionally, Postdoctoral Fellows have the opportunity to benefit from resources and workshops offered by the Career Centre, York’s Teaching Commons as well as York University Libraries, which hosts the Learning Commons. Workshops range from discovering new research tools to successful grant writing to teaching development opportunities. Postdocs should also consider attending sessions by Mitacs, Beyond the Professoriate (BTF), and the National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity (NCFDD) which are taught by professionals and are structured around cultivating and improving important professional skills.
Postdoctoral scholars can also connect with research centres and institutes focusing on research related to their areas of inquiry. Connecting with these units can provide valuable opportunities to network, participate in research events, and possibly become an official affiliate. A list of research centres and institutes at York can be found on the website for the Vice-President of Research & Innovation.
Professional development events and opportunities are listed in the monthly Postdoctoral Fellows edition of the FGSnews newsletter, which distributes information about funding, events, and opportunities of interest to our postdoctoral community. For general questions about postdoctoral affairs and resources on campus, please contact the Postdoctoral Services & Professional Skills Coordinator.
A photo of postdoc viewing webinar