Four Minority-Serving Institutions Selected to Join CGS’s PhD Career Pathways Project
    July 5, 2018



    Contact: Katherine Hazelrigg   (202) 461-3888/


    Washington, DC – The Council of Graduate Schools today announced that four federally-recognized Minority-Serving Institutions (MSIs) will join an existing coalition that are working to gather and use data about the careers of PhD students and alumni. A grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF grant #1661272) has been supporting data collection about PhD careers in STEM fields.


    The universities selected to receive awards to participate as funded project partners are:

    • Howard University
    • North Carolina A&T State University
    • University of Arizona
    • University of Nevada, Las Vegas


    In addition to the 33 universities participating in the project as grant recipients, 31 additional institutions are participating in the project as affiliate partners.


    Over the course of the multi-year project, universities will collect data from current PhD students and alumni with surveys that were developed by CGS in consultation with senior university leaders, funding agencies, disciplinary societies, researchers, and PhD students and alumni. The resulting data will allow universities to analyze PhD career preferences and outcomes at the program level and help faculty and university leaders strengthen career services, professional development opportunities, and mentoring in doctoral programs.


    “We are thrilled to include four doctoral-granting, MSIs to our PhD Career Pathways project. We know that PhD students aspire to a wide variety of careers, including academic research and teaching,” said CGS President Suzanne Ortega. “We need to gain a better understanding of what the career pathways for our alumni look like. Our university partners are leading the way for the entire community of doctoral institutions.”


    Universities from across the country will be able to compare their data on PhD career preferences and outcomes with CGS’s national dataset. Universities will also be able to use the data to communicate the career trajectories of PhD alumni to current and prospective students, helping them to make more informed selections of PhD programs. By analyzing the processes of survey administration, CGS will identify promising practices for implementing the surveys and share them with graduate schools nationwide.


    The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation is supporting the PhD Career Pathways project focused on the humanities. This supplemental grant from NSF will support the data collection in STEM fields at the previously mentioned four MSIs.


    The Council of Graduate Schools (CGS) is an organization of approximately 500 institutions of higher education in the United States and Canada engaged in graduate education, research, and the preparation of candidates for advanced degrees. The organization’s mission is to improve and advance graduate education, which it accomplishes through advocacy in the federal policy arena, research, and the development and dissemination of best practices.


    Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.


    CGS is the leading source of information, data analysis, and trends in graduate education. Our benchmarking data help member institutions to assess performance in key areas, make informed decisions, and develop plans that are suited to their goals.
    CGS Best Practice initiatives address common challenges in graduate education by supporting institutional innovations and sharing effective practices with the graduate community. Our programs have provided millions of dollars of support for improvement and innovation projects at member institutions.
    As the national voice for graduate education, CGS serves as a resource on issues regarding graduate education, research, and scholarship. CGS collaborates with other national stakeholders to advance the graduate education community in the policy and advocacy arenas.  
    CGS is an authority on global trends in graduate education and a leader in the international graduate community. Our resources and meetings on global issues help members internationalize their campuses, develop sustainable collaborations, and prepare their students for a global future.