Success during and after graduation

People trained in the humanities who study Shakespeare’s poetry, or Cezanne’s paintings, say, have learned to play with big concepts, and to apply new ways of thinking to difficult problems that can’t be analyzed in conventional ways.

Graduate Careers and Professional Development

The uOttawa English Department offers careers guidance and professional development training for both MA and PhD students. This takes many different forms and is designed to help graduate students prepare for a wide range of careers both within and beyond academia. Ottawa is an excellent staging post for careers in government, technology, the non-profit sector, media and the arts, education, and many other professional fields. We regularly host visiting speakers in our professional development seminars and our location at the heart of Canada’s national capital region allows us to offer excellent career opportunities through our MA Co-op program, which enables students to gain paid work experience in government, industry and the arts while studying for their degree. Recent graduates have gone on to work at Shopify, the Ministry of Defence, N.G.O.s, etc. Several of our PhD students have also gone on to tenure track positions at the University of Toronto, Leiden University, Khalifa University and more.

Support for life after graduate studies

All MA and PhD students are required to take Research Methodology (ENG 6302) and Professional Development (ENG 6303). These courses equip students with skills in research methods, grant writing, teaching and course design, conference presentations, public speaking, and publishing. Visiting speakers from a range of both academic and non-academic professions provide insights on how to prepare for careers post-graduation.   

A dedicated job placement officer helps PhD candidates in their final year prepare letters, references, and applications, and conducts mock interviews and job talks to ensure they have the best possible chance of competing for the few tenure track jobs that become available each year.  

MA students following the MRP or coursework pathways can now participate in the Co-op program, which enables them to earn money and gain valuable work experience and contacts while they study. The Co-op office can match candidates with employers in government, business, media and arts organizations across the national capital region.  

There are a number of resources on campus that graduate students have access to while studying. The Career Development Centre hosts regular career fairs, can help review resumes, offers career counselling, and has a number of job search tools. Also, the Entrepreneurship Hub  on campus provides free sessions if you want to learn about entrepreneurship, social media, and networking.