Career Outcomes of PhD Alumni

Career outcomes for BSD alumni

To see a larger version visit BSD Alumni Job Functions

These pie charts represent both self-reported data and extensive research on our alumni outcomes.  To best categorize the career trajectories of our alumni, we have adopted the 24 myIDP categories devised by the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) as a framework for the individual development plans (IDP) of postdoctoral fellows in the sciences. These 24 categories include a spectrum of career opportunities for PhDs in addition to principal investigator at a research-intensive institution. We have spectrally color-coded these categories in the figure to the right from dark gray (Administration) rotating clockwise to light purple (Unknown); these categories also feature business, entrepreneurship, public policy, science communication and teaching--among other categories. 

Our data are complete for alumni who are 0-15 years post graduation, and we continue to gather data on alumni who are further into their careers.  Our 10-15 year post PhD data may therefore show a bias towards alumni who have pursued well-documented careers, such as those in academia.  The majority of our graduates transition into postdoctoral training but many pursue a wide range of other careers either immediately or subsequent to further training.

We believe that the academic community should recognize that a large number of trainees desire and would greatly benefit from extracurricular training that will support their professional development and eventual career trajectory.  At the University of Chicago we are offering such training through the NIH-funded myCHOICE program.