The OPTIONS Program is an initiative to support all engineering graduate students and postdoctoral fellows to explore diverse career options.
Purpose & Content
Take a deep dive into career management and join a supportive community of like-minded MASc students exploring career possibilities. The Cohort Program is an eight week, non-credit program facilitated by faculty and professional development experts. The program provides:
- Eight, two-hour, live sessions
- A short instructional video on resumes and cover letters for viewing on your own time
- Two career management tools to develop an individualized, career exploration plan
- A one-on-one, 30 min meeting with a career coach (optional)
- Personalized feedback on your resume and cover letter
- A mock interview, personalized feedback on your interview skills, and access to an interview preparation toolkit
- An informational interview with an alumni and a database of informational interview questions
- A Peer Success Team to support your career exploration
Review the schedule before submitting an application to ensure you can attend all eight sessions. Click here. Some sessions occur in-person while other sessions occur online.
If you will experience a visa delay and might not be able to attend the first session on October 3 in-person, please contact Joanne at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to the programming, resources, and one-on-one meeting listed above, participants who complete the program (attend six of eight sessions) receive a digital certificate of completion approved by the Vice-Dean, Graduate Studies and the OPTIONS’ Faculty Convenor.
- U of T Engineering MASc student
- Strong interest in developing personal and professional skills beyond technical knowledge
- Curious about career exploration
- Eager to participate in group discussions
- Willingness to be part of a team and support your peers’ career preparation
This is an interactive program (not a traditional lecture). You will participate in interactive activities and small group conversations. For online sessions, you will need to use your audio to communicate with peers and (if possible) video.
All eight sessions occur live from Tuesday, October 3 to Tuesday, November 28 from 2 – 4 pm ET (exclusive of November 7). Some sessions occur in-person while other sessions occur online.
By applying to The OPTIONS Program, I commit to attend all eight sessions. Why?
- This program is designed as an integrated sequence of sessions, and you will benefit most by attending all eight sessions. We recognize some session titles or descriptions might not resonate with you. We ask that you bring curiosity, patience, and an open-mind. Since 2017, we have delivered eleven OPTIONS cohorts to over 200 graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. The MOST common feedback we receive from participants is that the individual sessions build on each other to form a comprehensive, structured career management experience.
- You are joining a cohort of 30 participants, and within this cohort you are placed in a Peer Success Team of four to five participants. Over eight sessions, you will work with the cohort and your team to complete program activities and discussions. By applying to this program, you are committing to the cohort and your Peer Success Team that you will attend all sessions.
- You commit to participate and engage in conversations with your peers. In particular, for online sessions you will need a quiet space and access to your audio to participate in group discussions (and, if possible, your video). During an online session, you should not be completing work outside the program, commuting, etc…
- The Vice-Dean, Graduate Studies and the Troost Institute for Leadership Education in Engineering invest a significant amount of resources and time in developing and delivering this one of a kind program to you FREE OF CHARGE. We ask that you commit to attend all eight sessions AND, although not required, take advantage of the one-on-one meeting, videos, and toolkits to make this experience work for YOU!
- We receive more applications than the program can accommodate. By committing to this program, you are taking a spot from another student.
Most importantly, this program is here for YOU to develop your personal effectiveness, clarify your career aspirations, and have a meaningful learning experience with a supportive community of peers and instructors. There is no homework, only optional activities to accelerate your career exploration, and no grades. We recognize life happens and there might be unexpected situations that might mean you have to miss a session. That is okay! Remember, you must attend at least six of the eight sessions to receive your certificate.