Building career skills during your research PhD at the MacDiarmid Institute
The Career and Relevant-to-Industry Skills Programme (CRISP) is designed for MacDiarmid Institute PhD students to explore and develop the skills which will lead to success in their future careers. The diverse, non-academic range of skills on offer is relevant to a range of employment settings, from start-ups to industrial R&D, and from public institutions to professional services companies. Many of these skills are also useful in academia, particularly for PhD students and postdoctoral researchers. We anticipate that future employers will recognise CRISP as a valuable addition to your CV.
Participants in CRISP will earn a ‘badge’ for participation in each opt-in module. The MacDiarmid Institute will record and attest to the badges obtained by each student. There will be approximately 15 modules on offer in total over a 2-year period, and we have set a goal of 8 badges for achievement of a full CRISP programme. There will be no formal assessment, and badges do not constitute formal qualifications.
Modules will be delivered as face-to-face themed workshops e.g. 2-3 modules may be available over a 2-day period in one location. Students are not expected to attend all available modules within a workshop, and some modules may be delivered in parallel. Each module will typically take half a day or a full day. A small amount of preparatory and follow-up material may be delivered online.
The modules offered will develop skills that are broadly relevant to many career choices. They have been selected through analysis of our alumni data, as well as feedback from a range of potential employers of materials science graduates. We have consulted with start-ups, multinational R&D intensive companies, investors, professional services companies, and government agencies.
Workshops will be interactive, allowing participants to develop an understanding of how to apply new skills to their own areas of research, or enable them to bridge between their scientific discipline and a related field.
Eligibility and selection. Any PhD student affiliated with the MacDiarmid Institute is eligible to participate. Attendance may be subject to capacity limitations. Selection for workshops will consider timeliness of the application (i.e. first-come first-served), travel and emissions logistics, and equity. Due to the rolling nature of the programme, those who miss out on any particular module will have the chance to apply for later modules, and potentially a later version of the same module.
To get involved. Familiarise yourself with the information here, keep an eye on communications from the Institute (e.g. through our weekly Update, newsletters, social media and/or MESA communications) and bookmark this webpage.
You are encouraged to select 8 or more module options within a 2-year period. It does not matter when you start this 2-year period: topics will roll over on a continuing basis. Mix and match the skills in a way that supports your career aspirations, or to explore things you don’t know about.
Programme scheduling will be flexible - for example, much of the information for workshops 2 and beyond is still to be developed at present. Obviously it is not ideal to decide on which modules to apply for when future modules remain uncertain. Our goal is to release as much information as possible to help you plan your participation, and our present planning is listed below (for further progress, see see the FAQs and more information document).
Workshop 1: “The Science / Commercial Interface”
12-14 October 2021 in Wellington. Available modules are:
(Provisional) Workshop 2: “Skills for an R&D Professional”
February 2022, during the MacDiarmid Institute Symposium. Modules (TBC) may include:
(Provisional) Workshop 3: “Communication and Other Skills for the Public Sector”
Mid-2022. Modules (TBC) may include:
(Provisional) Workshop 4: “Start-Ups”
Late 2022, during the MacDiarmid Institute Symposium. Modules (TBC) may include:
Early 2023: No workshop due to AMN10 conference.
(Provisional) Workshop 5: “Teams and leadership”
Mid-2023. Modules (TBC) may include:
Late 2023: Workshops will recommence in a rolling 2-year cycle.
Downloadable as a PDF here.
For any further information, please contact contact us at MI-CRISP@vuw.ac.nz