Getting the Most Out of GradCON

How to Get the Most Out of GradCON!

GradCON 2017​ Saturday, November 11th 
Graduate Student Career Options Conference

On Saturday, ​November 11th, come ​meet 35 graduate school alumni​, from all divisions within the University,​ ​as they speak about their career paths and how they connect the skills​ and knowledge​ they learned at Brown to a​ tremendous​ variety ​of ​often unpredictable, always interesting, and​ wonderfully​ satisfying career opportunities.

  • ​Meeting​ alums in your Brown network​ is a major benefit of being in the Brown community​!
  • Expand your thinking about career opportunities, ​make real networking connections, and ​get ​concrete advice from Brown alums who have been in your shoes​!​

Wh​y GradCON 2017?

  • ​Talk about career tracks, current and past employers, work culture, decision making, successes, and yes, missteps​.
  • ​Learn how ​alums ​​fuse skills​ and talents​ ​​ - transferable skills - ​ within careers in ​a ​​myriad of work sector​s​​​.
  • Hear what employers are looking for.
  • ​Get advice on how to best use your time at Brown ​to be ​positioned for ​opportunities​ ​after Brown​​.

Who is coming?

  • ​Grad alums are coming from around the country​ (and one international)​.
  • Some have masters degrees, and some have doctoral degrees.
  • Some are recent graduates and some are seasoned and experienced professionals​.
  • Some work for large organizations, some for themselves​, and everything in between.​
  • Some ​work ​in business, some for the common good, some with government.
  • Some ​love numbers and some ​love words.
  • Some are educators, some are advocates, some are researchers, ​some are communicators, ​some are educators, some develop policy, ​some analyze, ​and some lead ​teams and ​organizations.
  • ​Alums who all make an impact. ​
  • Alums who all understand the unique value of GradCON 2017.

Check out this link to the panelists with their complete bios:

What is the format and the schedule for the day?


  • 9:00-10:00 am: Student Breakfast, Kasper Multi-purpose Room
  • 10:15-11:45 am: Alumni Career Panels, Panel #1 (all panels run twice)
  • 12:00-1:00 pm: Networking Lunch, Kasper Multi-purpose Room​ (​registration required)​
  • 1:15-2:45 pm: Alumni Career Panels, Panel #2
  • 3:00 - 4:00 pm: Closing Wine/Beer Networking Reception, Brown Faculty Club
  • 3:00-4:00 pm: LinkedIn PHOTO BOOTH! Free for everyone!​
  • BioSciences Research: Science Center, 3rd floor, SciLi
  • Higher Education: Faculty Club, 2nd floor
  • International: Bert 015, ​​85 Waterman, entry on Waterman St​
  • Arts/Culture: Maddock Alumni House 38 Brown St
  • Data Science, AI, Physical Sciences: Writing Center, 5th floor, SciLi, Room 520
  • Business/Consulting: Sheridan Center, 7th fl, SciLi, Room 720
  • Government/Policy: CareerLAB, 167 Angell St, next to Paragon Restaurant
  • Writing/Communications: Faculty Club, 2nd floor
  • Health Policy/Consulting: Sayles Hall, Main Green
What can I attend?
  • OPEN: All graduate students are welcome to attend the ​S​tudent ​B​reakfast, two ​Alumni ​​C​areer ​P​anels, and the ​C​losing ​W​ine/​B​eer ​Networking ​Reception. ​Registration is requested for these events.​ ​ ​
  • ​LIMITED: Attendance at the lunch is limited. You will receive confirmation of your registration.​ (You can check on Saturday to see if there are empty seats.)

Should I only attend panels and network with alums from my ​d​ep​artment or ​d​ivision in the University?

  • No! Think widely and broadly about your interests, and read the bios beforehand.
  • Alumni from the humanities might be working for an employer in the sciences, and vice versa.
  • Our alums have worked for many employers - you might find an employer of interest via a career arena you never considered.

What can I expect to get out of the day?

  • ​Expect to discover how ​your skills​, passions, and expertise​ are​ applicable and​ transferable.
  • ​Expect to become more comfortable with networking​​ and talking with alums​.
  • ​Expect to ​learn ​​next ​steps toward successful job searching​ in various fields​.
  • Expect to talk to a lot of interesting people.
  • ​E​xpect to introduce yourself (excellent practice for continued networking and eventually for interviewing).
How can I prepare?
  • ​Review the bios of the panelists and​ decide​ who you want to seek out during the day​.
  • ​Review the schedule to figure out​ ahead of time​ which events you want to attend​.
  • Be ready with your elevator pitch -- a brief (approx​imately​ 30 sec​ond​) introduction about your background, your work in the context of non-academic careers, and what skills you're developing​ and hope to utilize​.
  • Practice your ​short introduction! ​Talk about ​interests, areas of knowledge, and skills​ employers might be seeking.​ ​
  • Prepare questions for the alumni panelists​ - What do you want to learn? What is confusing to you? ​
  • Now is the time to ask!​
Should I bring anything? What is the dress code?
  • ​The dress​ code is​ business casual (but please don't feel like you need to purchase new clothes).
  • Bring something to take notes with if you're so inclined​.
  • It isn't necessary to bring a resume.

How can I follow up with alumni?

  • The bio books will have emails, but ​you are welcome to​ ask for business cards.
  • The alumni are generously giving their time, so feel free to send a follow up email ​with a thank you.

Need help getting organized?

  • Come to Grad Walk-ins at CareerLAB! Monday, 12-1pm; Tuesday, 5-6 pm; Wednesday 4-5pm, and Thursday, 3-4pm at the Writing Center, 5th floor, SciLi
  • ​Come to practice your ​​elevator speech​, or ​to ask other questions

In summary...​

  • The CareerCON logo says it well: Connections, Conversations, Confidence. 
  • This unique and valuable opportunity is at your door step. 
  • Enjoy, have fun, learn, and apply the advice from alums who have been where you are!