The University of Iowa

Graduate Success Workshops

*Starting 3/11/20, all newly requested workshops (temporarily) will be held virtually by Zoom web conferencing due to the campus coronavirus response.  The workshop topics listed below are still available in Zoom format.  


The Graduate College offers workshops that can be requested by University of Iowa student groups (formal organizations or informal groups of students), faculty, departments, or other campus organizations. 

These workshops can be a productive addition to orientations, seminars, courses, research group meetings, and more. They introduce students to the basics of professional and career development topics (like application documents, the job search, and more), freeing up faculty to address field-specific issues in more detail.

To request one of the workshops below, please email Vivian Sheridan at

StrengthsFinder Leadership: This workshop draws on the StrengthsFinder assessment tool to help students better understand their own unique strengths as leaders in an academic and/or work context. (Not available during Spring 2020. Please check back at a later time.)

Improve Your Teaching Through Research: Learn about the three-tier framework (Associate, Practitioner, Scholar) for developing your teaching, while earning nationally-recognized, micro certifications through the national Center for the Integration of Research, Teaching and Learning (CIRTL) Network.

Mapping your Graduate Experience: This session explores how to use an Individual Development Plans (IDP) to stay on track, communicate with your advisor, and understand your skills, interests, and values.

Grant Writing 101: Students will learn the basics of where to look for grants, how to craft a persuasive proposal, and how to “think like a reviewer.” Please specify STEM (NIH/NSF type opportunities covered) or humanities/social sciences (ACLS/Mellon type opportunities covered).

Resumes & Cover Letters: Develop effective materials for job searches beyond academia. This workshop will discuss the structure, writing style, and tone characteristics common to successful application materials.

Career Exploration: Learn about the broad range of careers available to PhDs and get useful strategies for connecting with people you don’t know. Students in this workshop will use self-assessments and partner discussion to identify target career sectors for additional exploration.

Please note all workshops:

  • are 60-90 minutes in length,
  • require at least 5 students to attend, and
  • (for Spring 2020) attendees to have access to the Zoom web conferencing platform