Academic Advice

List of resources provided during our Panels of Discussion that took place during the Fall of 2022.


Academic funding: navigating the ocean of grants


Why look for grants?

How to find opportunities?

List of Resources:

For international postdocs and faculty in the US:
For international postdocs and faculty in Europe:

Finding an academic position: navigating the job market


The application package

Networking and word of mouth

Knowing your target department

Finding work-life balance


Academia can complicate achieving work-life balance. Apart from a heavy workload, an academic career often comes with stressors such as precarity, having to move often, and mentors who have not experienced the same issues and thus may not be able to empathize. In addition, COVID-19 and its effects threw off what little balance academics had achieved, with disproportionate effects on women and minorities. Some career stages can be more stressful than others – for example, a postdoc can be more uncertain and precarious, while a permanent position can allow for better life planning.

Academic institutions and their resources can be leveraged to improve your work-life balance. If resources are not available, ask! Make yourself heard and ask that institutions and conferences provide facilities such as nurseries, lactation rooms, and on-site childcare. Any parental leave should be taken in consideration when you’re being assessed for jobs – so make sure to list it under “career breaks” at the start of your CV.

Nothing will change unless people hold institutions accountable and demand reasonable standards of support. This includes choosing wisely who you work with! At the interview stage, carefully assess expectations, attitudes and work culture. Remember that an interview works both ways: you are assessing the department and interviewers as much as they are assessing you.

While working towards institutional changes, leverage other sources of support. Parent support groups can be a helpful resource. Having a supportive partner also helps, though resolving work-life tensions should not be left entirely to families. It is also essential to carve some time out for yourself and activities that improve your well-being, such as work or creative hobbies. Get rid of the guilt that can unconsciously lurk in the background: work never ends and it’s important to set healthy boundaries.

Last update at: May 2023