Paula Chambers, PhD, has been a leading voice in PhD career development since 1999 when she founded the first online community for humanities PhDs interested in non-academic careers.
In 2010, she founded Versatile PhD, which helps doctoral students and postdocs envision, prepare for and excel in non-academic careers.
Today Dr. Chambers makes campus visits, presenting to graduate students, postdocs, faculty, staff and administrators on how PhDs can prepare for non-academic careers.



This exciting hands-on 90-minute workshop helps students & postdocs re-see their academic accomplishments through non-academic eyes, learning to articulate their real value to non-academic employers.


This one-hour presentation helps faculty be better mentors to doctoral students around non-academic careers. Faculty will receive a simple three-point plan that won’t significantly add to their already-too-high workloads.


In this one-hour presentation, I present new primary research on what specific skills and behaviors during grad school become key factors in new PhD graduates getting non-academic jobs, successfully “making the leap” into non-academic careers.


In this 30-minute, briskly-paced presentation, I define “career climate,” connect it to your university’s mission and strategic plan, and suggest ways to improve your career climate over time by measuring, tweaking and measuring again.


Your campus culture will benefit the most from a full-day visit, during which I have contact with multiple campus populations. A full day visit includes 1-3 major presentations plus as many minor presentations or face-to-face meetings as you can pack into a 10-hour day, such as meetings, panels, luncheons, roundtables and receptions.

For greatest impact, I recommend you have me interact with as many constituencies as possible in my 9 hours: students, faculty, staff, postdocs, deans, even donors if donor cultivation is desired.


“Paula was both engaging and personable as she discussed the variety of opportunities which are open to Ph.D.s and graduate students. Her passion for helping all of us find our ideal career was apparent to everyone.”

Brice Russ

Ph.D. student, Linguistics, Ohio State University, now Social Media Producer for AAAS

“The most informative and eye-opening presentation I have attended during 7 years of PhD study.”

Kazuya Toyama

PhD Student, Chemistry, University Nebraska, Lincoln, now a patent agent