Designing A "Both/And" Career: Moving in and Out of An Academic Career

Tuesday, March 30, 2021 - 11:00am to Wednesday, March 31, 2021 - 11:55am

Gone are the days when earning a Ph.D always, and solely, led directly to a career in academia. With the deluge of information being retained by modern organizations, many are in dire need of Econometric assistance—whether they realize it, or not! PhD careers outside of Academia can be tremendously rewarding, albeit they also come with their own set of challenges. While the day-to-day work in academia (outside of teaching) is not too dissimilar from collaborating on research with colleagues, the recruiting, interviewing, and negotiations gates in Industry are categorically different from those in Academia.

Richard Saouma, Ph.D., will share his own journey in and out of academia, and show how a focus on skills development and meaningful work helps reframe what it means to have a “successful” Ph.D. Career.

Richard Saouma is currently the Associate Dean of Professional Master Programs at Broad where he continues to serve as an Associate Professor in the College’s Accounting department. Before arriving at MSU, Richard was an Assistant Professor at the UCLA Anderson School, the Director of Corporate Strategy at Microsoft, and later served as a Visiting Professor at the Eccles School at the University of Utah. 

In his talk, Richard will discuss the two-year journey between the day he decided to leave academia and the first day on the job at industry, highlighting a series of common blind-spots that prolonged said journey. He’s also happy to discuss Economist/Social-Scientist roles in the tech-sector and how different firms and government agencies either discourage or promote academic research.

Richard earned his PhD at the Stanford GSB (Economics), after completing his undergraduate degrees in Economics and Applied Math at UC Berkeley and an internship at the Federal Reserve Board of Governors in Washington DC.