Professional Development


Dal GradPD is your go-to place to learn about professional development designed for your specific needs as a graduate student. Together with partners across the university and external providers, the Faculty of Graduate Studies (FGS) assembles an ongoing schedule of free workshops and events aimed to help you prepare for your career, whether you’re pursuing a professional life in or outside of academia.

Dal GradPD is based on the skills our grad students report they want most and that our alumni and employers say are essential for life after grad school. Guided by survey feedback and best practices, we developed the four pillars of the Dal GradPD program dedicated to building skills in Communication, Career Intelligence, Health and Wellbeing, and Leadership. Workshops are designed specifically for your needs and offered exclusively to graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.

Upcoming Dal GradPD workshops and experiential learning

Date Time (all times Atlantic) Workshop/webinar Partner Pillar(s)
September 23 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. Women in Entrepreneurship Speaker Series Dal Innovates Leadership (Experiential learning)
October 6 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Managing big writing projects Dalhousie Writing Centre Health and Wellbeing (Workshop)
October 7 10:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Career Development and Leadership Graduate Student Masterclass with Deep Saini (register by September 27 at 9:00 a.m.) Dalhousie University President's Office Leadership (Workshop)
October 8 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Bring an inclusive mindset to your teaching Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL) Leadership (Workshop)
October 12 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Responsible conduct of research: Session 1 (register by October 11 at 4:00 p.m.) Professional & Research Education Program (PREP) Leadership (Workshop)
October 12 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. LinkedIn for academics Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL) Leadership (Workshop)
October 13 12:00 p.m. to 1:00 p.m. Entrepreneur 101 (register by October 12 at 4:00 p.m.) Dal Innovates Leadership (Workshop)
October 20 11:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Working with and supporting international TAs in navigating intercultural differences Centre for Learning and Teaching Communication (Workshop)
October 20 1:00 p.m. Imposter Syndrome: Little fish, big pond (register by October 19 at 4:00 p.m.) Student Health and Wellness Health and Wellbeing (Workshop)
October 22 11:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Responsible conduct of research: Session 2 (register by October 21 at 4:00 p.m.) Professional & Research Education Program (PREP) Leadership (Workshop)
November 3 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. No time to be human: Self-care for graduate students (register by November 2 at 4:00 p.m.) Student Health and Wellness Health and Wellbeing (Workshop)
November 10 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Understanding levers of change in academia Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL) Leadership (Workshop)
November 17 1:30 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Literature reviews: Discover best practices (register by November 16 at 4:00 p.m.) Writing Centre Communication (Workshop)
November 24 2:00 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. Make connections of your teaching and learning Centre for Learning and Teaching Career intelligence (Workshop)
November 29 - December 10 Various times Graduate Teaching Dossier Retreat Centre for Learning and Teaching Leadership (Workshop)
December 1 2:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. Getting the most from feedback (register by November 30 at 4:00 p.m.) Writing Centre Leadership (Workshop)


Dal GradPD certificate option

To help you navigate your PD journey, we’ve created a free certificate program to recognize your efforts and help you identify the opportunities to take you where you want to go. Check out our Dal News story for more information on the certificate program, including a Q-and-A with Dal GradPD designer Dr. Mabel Ho.

The certificate consists of four parts:

  • Individualized development plan workshop: In this session, you’ll zero in on the skills and experiences you need to achieve your professional goals and map your plan to get there. IDP workshops will be held every month, so don't worry if you missed an earlier session. Asynchronous videos of IDP workshops will also be available in Brightspace.
  • Pillars workshops: Participate in two hours of workshops from each of the Dal GradPD pillars: Communication, Career Intelligence, Health and Wellbeing, and Leadership. You can select from options provided by Dal GradPD partners or find other opportunities you think will best suit your goals. 
  • Experiential learning: Take on four hours of hands-on experience from each pillar. Write a blog, go to a networking event, practice a time management strategy, organize an event – the possibilities are vast and the experiences priceless. 
  • Professional identity workshop: Wrap up the certificate with this session that will empower you to articulate the value of the skills you've gained at graduate school to prospective academic or non-academic employers. 

Any workshops or experiential learning you've undertaken since September 2020 can be used toward the certificate with the submission of a written reflection. Workshops covering multiple pillars will count toward one pillar of your choosing.

When the program is complete, you’ll receive a certificate signed by the Dean of the Faculty of Graduate Studies and recognition on your transcripts. More importantly, you’ll have developed a plan for where you want to go with your career and assembled the professional and personal skills you need to get there.

Have a question about Dal GradPD or its certificate program? Email GradPD@dal.ca