Professional Development refers to training outside discipline-based graduate coursework and is the continuous process of acquiring new knowledge and transferable skills related to one’s area of professional employment. Effective professional development programs prepare Master’s and Doctoral students for a wider range of employment opportunities and help bridge the gap between graduate education and the workforce.

TAMU Graduate Student Professional Development Competencies- All graduate students should develop key skills or competencies to prepare for success upon graduation from TAMU with an advanced degree. Based on graduate student professional development literature, peer institution best practices and feedback from graduate program directors, advisors and students, the Graduate and Professional School has identified four key competencies that cut across academic disciplines and degree programs:

  1. Academic Development-Preparing research proposals, abstracts and conference posters; seeking publication and degree completion; developing life skills including stress management and support networks.
  2. Leadership and Communication Development-Improving skills in oral and written communication, collaboration, self-awareness and mentoring; understanding diversity and the demands of a global workforce.
  3. Instruction and Assessment-Enhancing knowledge in areas such as designing courses and delivery methods, assessing learning and reflecting on practice; engaging in teaching opportunities beyond initial teaching experience.
  4. Career Development-Expanding career path knowledge and job searching skills; improving networking and marketability; developing entrepreneurial skills; professionalism. Career paths are identified along two dimensions:
    • Within academia
    • Outside academia in government, industry/business or non-profit

PD Competencies

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