The Versatile PhD is a web-based, socially positive business that helps universities provide graduate students with non-academic professional development. Our mission is to help graduate students and PhDs envision, prepare for, and excel in non-academic careers.
We want doctoral students to be informed about academic employment realities, educated about their non-academic career options, and supported in preparing for a wide range of careers, so that in the end, they have choices. The key concept here is versatility: the ability to apply skills, abilities and interests in a wide variety of positions and fields.
The Versatile PhD website contains free content available to all, and premium content available by institutional subscription. The free content, which anyone may access simply by registering on the site, includes a supportive community of over 90,000 likeminded souls, access to member-posted job listings and the member directory (although SmartJobs requires an institutional subscription), and the public pages of the PhD Career Finder, an interactive tool that lets users explore careers based on their academic discipline.
The subscription-only resources consist of premium content and a Power Search feature to identify non-academic contacts.
The premium content, located under “Real Life Examples” on every career page in the PhD Career Finder, presents detailed inside information about each career represented, offered by PhDs and ABDs actually in those careers: their stories, advice, inside information about their fields, even the resumes and cover letters they used to get their first jobs in these fields. All premium content is 100% original; nothing is copied or aggregated from other sites. Nearly all authors are members of the Versatile PhD community and can be contacted by PM through the site.
The Power Search feature offers a way to identify possible non-academic contacts. Students can search for multiple criteria simultaneously – for example, historians working in the nonprofit sector in New York City – thus paring down a community of over 80,000 to just a few individuals who can reasonably be contacted for informational interviews.
Options for Success is a six-module career discovery course with specific action items for success in your career search, while our blog and SmartJobs initiative unearths ideas, trends and actionable opportunities to pursue.
The Versatile PhD, LLC, is a California limited liability company, founded by Paula Chambers in 2010 after eleven years of managing the free community in its original form, as a listserv called WRK4US. Ownership changed hands in 2018. Todd Maurer is now President of VPhD. More on the Versatile PhD’s staff and founder here.
Thank you for visiting, and may we all endlessly discover how versatile we are.