The OPTIONS Program

The OPTIONS Program

"I have a graduate degree - now what?"

The OPTIONS Program supports engineering graduate students and postdoctoral fellows explore diverse career options.

It consists of the Cohort Program and complementary events.

The OPTIONS rograms

Cohort Program

The Cohort Program is an opportunity to take a deep dive into career management with a supportive community of like-minded graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. Facilitated by faculty and professional development experts, the program provides an opportunity to clarify your interests and aspirations, develop job application materials, and explore career pathways. We offer three different Cohort Programs to address the specific needs of the U of T Engineering community.

Complementary Events

The Complementary Events are open to all engineering graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. These events provide an introduction to the school-to-work transition, tools to develop skills critical to the success of a professional, and a venue to network with engineering alumni.

EventDayTime (ET)LocationRegistration
Negotiating Job OffersTuesday May 3012:00 - 1:30 pmGB202
Step Into Tech - Roles in Sales, Customer Success, and Account Management for TechnologistsTuesday June 612:00 - 1:30 pmOnlineRegistration open
Interviewing for WorkTuesday July 2512:00 - 1:30 pmGB202Registration open

Negotiating Job Offers

Tuesday May 30, 2023 | 12:00 – 1:30 pm | GB202

In this session, you will learn about approaches to negotiating job offers effectively. Specifically, you will:

  • Discuss factors to consider when negotiating job offers
  • Consider what aspects of an offer can be negotiated
  • Walk through a framework to prepare for negotiating and gain resources to help with this preparation
  • Explore and identity other factors that might impact on the negotiation process

Facilitator: Mary McAuliffe, Career Educator, Career Exploration & Education


Step Into Tech - Roles in Sales, Customer Success, and Account Management for Technologists

Tuesday June 6, 2023 | 12:00 – 1:30 pm | Online | Register here

Join us for a session on careers in technical sales for engineers. We will address the following:

  • What is technical sales and customer success?
  • How to find your fit in technical sales or customer success?
  • How to make your next move?

This session will be led by Uvaro, a community-based career success company that offers training and support for those interested in technical sales and other commercialization roles. There are more than 87k high-paying, open jobs in North America that could use your skills. We will also be joined by engineers working in technical sales who will share their career experience.


Interviewing for Work

Tuesday, July 25 | 12:00 – 1:30 pm | GB202 | Register on the event form

In this session, you will receive a brief review of interviewing strategies, including practice giving and receiving feedback on your interview techniques. Specifically, you will:

  • Describe strategies for effectively preparing for interviews and techniques for responding to different types of interview questions.
  • Practice responding to interview questions and giving feedback to interview responses.
  • Discover resources and services to support you during the interview process.

It is highly recommended that you review the 15-minute Interview Preparation Module Course before attending.

Facilitator: Joanne Lieu, Graduate Professional Development Coordinator, Office of the Vice Dean, Graduate Studies


Signature Complementary Events

The Signature Complementary Events are open to all engineering graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. These highly popular events require a longer time commitment (i.e., full-day), and are sometimes offered a couple times a year.


"The OPTIONS Program provided a how-to guide on exploring next steps. I am more confident to reach out to individuals in different positions to learn about their career paths. I left the program with a better understanding and ability to market my skills and strengths gained throughout my education."


"The OPTIONS Program helped me understand my skills from childhood to adulthood by realizing common patterns. It aided me to widen my career possibilities as opposed to the classic ‘industry vs academia’ approach."

(PhD, ECE)

"The OPTIONS program gave me the tools to reflect on my career story from different marketable perspectives. The course helped me to define, schedule, and practice clear and concise actions to create job opportunities aligned with my core values. The introspection was guided by instructors with different fields of expertise. This exposed me to more job possibilities and a better understanding of the path to follow as I transitioned from academia to industry."

(Postdoctoral Fellow, CHE)

"I was in the middle of my career exploration when I joined The OPTIONS Program. For me the program highlighted the possibilities outside of the more “well traveled” career paths and I felt empowered to explore these. Through the program I was able to recognize my skills and how they are of great value for my chosen direction in life."

(Postdoctoral Fellow, AER)