Career Planning

Center for Academic and Future Faculty Excellence (CAFFE)

The Center for Academic and Future Faculty Excellence (CAFFE) was created by a National Science Foundation Innovation through Institutional Integration grant. The CAFFE serves as a mechanism to combine planning for discipline-specific training with planning for professional development specific to faculty careers. This “parallel mentoring” approach serves to generate individual development plans for graduate students and postdocs. More information about the CAFFE program is available at


PREP (Planning, Resilience, Engagement, Professionalism) is MSU’s career and professional development model framed around four professional skills. It is designed to help you plan for a successful doctoral and postdoc experience and a smooth transition into your future in or beyond the academy. The PREP model is organized around our career matrix, which allows you to plan according to where you are in your program or job search. For more information, visit:

We offer a full calendar of workshops throughout the year around the PREP career stages and skills. For a yearly schedule, visit

Career Success

MSU’s Career Success is the online gateway to resources, programs, and events that will help you get from where you are now to where you want to be professionally.

At you can: assess your professional skills; explore career skills and professional pathways for a range of career options; create and customize professional development plans that can be saved, revised, and shared with others; and develop portfolios to assist in your job search.

The website offers extensive sections on academic and non-academic career preparation, teaching development, wellness resources, and conflict resolution.

PhD Career Services

Part of the MSU Graduate School and the Career Services Network, PhD Career Services provides a variety of online resources, as well as workshops and one-on-one advising, to support the many paths graduate students and postdocs choose to pursue, including careers in universities, government, industry, and non-profits. Our website contains sections on career exploration, preparing for a variety of career paths, and the job search – including résumé, cover letter, and interviewing tips – as well as career resources for international students and LGBTQ students, and information for employers and MSU PhD alumni. Visit:


MSU BEST is a professional development program for postdocs and Ph.D. students in biomedical science and engineering fields. Funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), MSU BEST helps students better understand the possible career landscape for biomedical Ph.D.s, and to develop the competencies and experiences needed to be competitive in seeking jobs in areas such as law, regulatory affairs, government agencies, private industry, entrepreneurship, and many others. The program includes one year of professional development workshops, seminars, panel discussions around careers, networking sessions, and other experiences to support career exploration. This competitive program also requires two “externships,” or short-term “internship” experiences to provide work experiences and exposure for BEST trainees to experience expanded career opportunities.