The OPTIONS Program

OPTIONS = Opportunities for PhDs: Transitions, Industry Options, Networking, and Skills

The OPTIONS Program is an initiative by the Vice-Dean, Graduate Studies and the Institute for Leadership Education in Engineering (ILead) to support U of T Engineering PhD students and post-doctoral fellows who wish to explore career options.

Take a deep dive into career management with an eleven-week, non-credit program. Facilitated by faculty and professional development experts, participants will develop their capability and discover meaningful career pathways.

The OPTIONS Program covers the following themes: 1) job market conditions for engineering PhDs and post-doctoral fellows; 2) unique skills and strengths participants bring to the workplace; 3) strategies for landing a job; and 4) preparation for being on the job. For more details, click here.

The program will take place on Mondays from 10 am – 12 pm between Sept 25 and Dec 11 (exclusive of Oct 9). If this time does not work for you, please note that we hope to offer this program in the winter semester at a different time.

The OPTIONS Program is open to PhD students (who have completed qualifying and/or comprehensive exams) and post-doctoral fellows who want to develop their personal/professional skills and explore career options. Involvement in the program requires participants actively engage in discussions and support their peer’s career preparation.

Participants who complete the program will receive a certificate of completion.

Apply for The OPTIONS Program here.


Complementary Events

In addition to the eleven-week program, there will be two to three complementary events per semester open to all PhD students and post-doctoral fellows. These events provide a sneak peek into the school-to-work transition and skills critical to the success of a professional.

The OPTIONS Program Kickoff - Wine and Cheese Networking Monday Sept 115:10 - 6:30 pmGB202
Engineering PhD to Management Consulting: Gain career story insights and case interview skillsMonday Oct 2312:30 - 4:30 pmMcKinsey & Company
Alumni Mixer - Dining Etiquette TutorialMonday Nov 206:00 - 8:30 pmFaculty Club, U of TRegistration open

The OPTIONS Program Kickoff – Wine and Cheese Networking

Monday Sept 11 | 5:10 – 6:30 pm | GB202

Are you unsure about your career plans? Do you want to explore career alternatives? Join us at The OPTIONS Program Kickoff – Wine and Cheese Networking. Come and learn about this new program for PhD students and post-doctoral fellows who want to explore career possibilities. You will meet and network with students who are also wrestling with their plans post-academia while enjoying wine and delicious food!

Engineering PhD to Management Consulting: Gain career story insights and case interview skills

Monday Oct 23 | 12:30 – 4:30 pm | McKinsey & Company

Join us for a Career Stories panel, moderated by Mark Franklin (Practice Leader, CareerCycles and Instructor, Engineering Careers (APS1030)), to hear the journeys of PhD graduates now in consulting. After the panel, Graham O’Neill (Manager, Canadian Recruiting, McKinsey & Company) will lead a session on ‘Case Interviewing,’ a key step in the consulting recruiting process. At the event, we will be joined by other McKinsey consultants and there will be informal time for meeting and networking.

Dress: Smart casual (no suits)

Learn more about the panelists here.

Alumni Mixer – Dining Etiquette Tutorial

Monday Nov 20 | 6:00 – 8:30 pm | Faculty Club, U of T

Do you know which fork to start with? Is it okay to take pictures of your food? Join us at U of T’s Faculty Club for a dining etiquette tutorial with alumni. Learn the ins and outs of table manners so you can be ready for your next interview or meeting over a meal! You will also have the opportunity to meet PhD alumni who have worked in a variety of careers outside the academy.

Learn more about the Faculty Club’s dining etiquette tutorial here.

Register now!

Contact Information

Teresa Didiano
Special Programs Coordinator, ILead