Following the creation of the Diversity and Climate Action Plan in January 2019 (see, the department recognized the need to empower our entire research community (junior faculty, senior faculty, and graduate students) with scientific leadership and management skills to facilitate an inclusive culture.

For the first time in the summer of 2019, we rolled CHEM 593 (which was CHEM 590c then), Advanced Professional Development for Chemists, to address the senior graduate trainees’ need for scientific leadership and management training preparation for their future careers. 

The course is delivered in a workshop style format that is focused on experiential learning. Facilitators, experts in their fields, lead student dialogue, and help students solve complex problems they encounter in their research careers. 

Course learning outcomes include:

  • Exposing graduate students to career development skills for various types of careers beyond just the professoriate;
  • Providing students with leadership and management skills necessary for them to be successful during their Ph.D. and beyond;
  • Developing cultural competence and awareness and the challenges plus opportunities of working with diverse scientific teams;
  • Equipping students with resources and tools for mental resilience throughout the rest of their Ph.D. and beyond;
  • Understanding sexual harassment in academia and how to be agents of change;
  • Developing conflict resolution strategies in chemistry research labs;

 The class meets weekly every Spring semester for 1 hr. 20 mins.

Please note that the workshops are continually evolving, considering the students' needs and the department's direction in creating an inclusive culture. Examples of topics covered in the course include:


Career Preparation & Development Skills Individual Development Plans
  Clifton Strengths workshop
  Understanding Transferable (Non-technical) Skills in Research
  Story Telling Research
  Tips & Guidelines on How to Publish



Community, Culture, and Climate Skills Managing Day-to-Day Lab Conflicts
  The Power of Language
  Managing Up
  Sexual Harassment and Power Differentials in the Sciences
  Mental Health and Resilience in Graduate School


For more information on the course, email Dr. Lloyd Munjanja at