From Doctoral Study to College Administration!

Dear Commons Community,

Jennifer S. Furlong, director of the office of career planning and professional development at the Graduate Center of the City University of New York,  and Julie Miller Vick, retired senior associate director of career services at the University of Pennsylvania, have an advisement piece in today’s Chronicle of Higher Education, for doctoral students considering a career in higher education administration.  Here is an excerpt:

…Julie: Next, start to reorganize your CV into a résumé. You’ll want to both shorten your CV, and reorganize it so that the experience most relevant to the job opening is at the top. (Take a look at our 2013 column, “From CV to One-Page Résumé.”)

Jenny: In recent decades, more degree programs have been created in various aspects of higher-education administration. Some of your competition for administrative jobs will be candidates with master’s degrees in education with a focus on higher education. So it’s not as easy as it used to be for a Ph.D. with little work experience to obtain an administrative position. But that doesn’t mean you can’t be a strong candidate for an administrative job if you have framed your work experience specifically to the opening, so the employer can see and understand how you might fit the job.

Julie: This is also where networking helps. As we say so often, talk with people who are doing the administrative work that interests you. Learn what they or their supervisors look for when they hire. Think about both the work experience and skills you have, and be able to talk about them in relation to the kind of job you want.

There are a wide variety of administrative positions in academe, and as they require different skills and backgrounds, not all of those jobs will be right for you. But you won’t find out which are without exploring and networking…. 

Good practical advice. 



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