Jacqueline Jones, University of Texas at Austin
LuAnn Jones, National Park Service
Laura J. Mitchell, University of California, Irvine
Matthew Powers, Stratfor Global Intelligence
The Professional Division is pleased to sponsor this panel as part of our “mini-conference” on alternative careers for history PhDs, to be held as part of the 2013 Annual Meeting. This session focuses on challenges faced by directors of graduate studies and department chairs as they consider ways to reshape departmental cultures and graduate curricula to reflect the fact that increasing numbers of graduate students will not be able to get—and in some cases will not want—tenure-track teaching jobs.
Many tenured faculty see their primary graduate-education role as one of preparing their students for life and work in the academy. Too often these faculty express disappointment when a student does not get, or does not want, a teaching job. To what extent should graduate-program curricula reflect the new realities of the job market, and the notion of the PhD as a “malleable degree”? Should programs become more flexible in their requirements, and more open to encouraging students to take courses such as public speaking and statistics (for example)? How can we inform our students of employment opportunities in a wide variety of fields?