Your involvement with WISC gives you many additional opportunities that most graduate and postdoctoral research programs at Columbia do not offer. In addition, there are many ways that you can personally benefit from getting involved.
Getting involved with WISC gives you opportunities to:
Demonstrate interest in the broader impacts of research and science
Your involvement with WISC shows your committed interest in improving diversity in STEM. Not only is this advantageous for applying for fellowships, but also for job applications in both academia and non traditional careers. With WISC, you show that you are passionate about important and longstanding issues in STEM education and diversity.
Meet new people from departments across Columbia and the greater NYC area
Attending WISC events gives you the opportunity to meet people outside of your research program and your lab. If you take on a leadership role, you’ll work closely with people from many departments, establishing connections and making new friends. In addition, you can also meet many of the wonderful faculty and staff on campus that can help you learn more about Columbia. You can also attend events around the city as an ambassador for WISC, putting you in touch with both students and professionals from all different backgrounds.
Learn about resources available to people pursuing careers in STEM
There are tons of resources out there for graduate students, postdoctoral researchers, and young professionals in STEM. The NYC area has many groups that offer networking opportunities, book clubs, career workshops, and outreach programs. However, the most challenging part is finding out about them! WISC collects information about events and other organizations in one place for you to find them easily. If you take on a leadership role, you can be the first one to know. You’d be surprised at how many opportunities there are both on and off campus.
Practice leadership skills that are applicable to a wide range of careers
Taking on a leadership role shows that you work well with others, that you can manage groups of people, that you have strong communication and organizational skills, and that you can take initiative. These skills are essential and transferable to all STEM careers, from managing a laboratory to managing a classroom to managing deals with other companies.
Practice skills for alternative careers in STEM Want to show that you have skills in writing, marketing, recruiting, social media, finance, grant writing, event management, web design, or education? Getting involved in a leadership position with WISC gives you these opportunities to show that you can do more than research! Not only is it fun to do something other than research, but these experiences can be directly applicable to many careers, especially non-traditional ones.