University of Wisconsin–Madison

2019 Workshops

Constructing a satisfying career is a lifelong endeavor. This conference will give you the skills you need to establish and maintain the career you want, no matter where you are today.

Beyond the PVL: Determining if positions are right for you

April McHugh

This session is focused on those interested in making a job change.  We will talk about using your assessment results related to interests, skills, values and personality to find that next great job fit.  In addition, we will look at reading PVL’s for details, figuring out if the position is a good fit and staying positive during your search.

“Do the job before getting the job: a practical guide to jump-starting your career at UW–Madison.”

Xiujuan Jane Zhang

Learn how you can reach your dream job by doing the job first. Xiujuan Jane Zhang, an enterprise business analyst/honorary fellow in Wisconsin School of Business, discusses how learning by doing is critical to leadership development.

Xiujuan started her career development late after her children became teenagers. Being a problem solver, she decided to focus her career in business analysis and project management, leading projects on campus and in the communities. In this session, Xiujuan will share concrete steps of developing yourself, identifying business problems, building teams and delivering values to others and the organization. It is all about being curious, asking questions and doing things before even being asked. She is now a bi-cultural leader, senior business/data analyst and part-time career advisor for international students.

Decoding Decision-making: Cultivating a toolkit for less regret

Kristina Vack

Chicken or Fish? Move or Remodel? Quit or Stay? Decision-making seeps into every part of our daily lives. Many people struggle with tough choices because they really, really don’t want to have any regrets. While no one gets it right 100% of the time, it can be useful to have a toolkit for guidance in critical moments. In this session we will review top decision-making books and discuss key takeaways from experts in the field. Participants will expand their decision-making toolkits with tips and techniques on how to be more proactive.

Professional paths for research staff at UW–Madison

Sharon Blohowiak, Kyle Hanson, Lynn Haynes, and Laur Rivera

UW–Madison is a highly decorated and respected research institution with many dedicated research professionals. Lab managers and staff are a big reason why the UW is so successful in advancing research discoveries and breakthroughs. But how can research staff advance their own careers and discover their passions?

A panel of research staff from various departments and at different stages in their careers will discuss how or where to find opportunities on and off campus, how to navigate a career in research and how their past experiences shaped their current choices. Many panel members belong to the UW Lab Management Community of Practice, an organization that provides activities for employees in lab management roles.

Stayin’ Alive: Will More Education Keep Me Afloat?

Ace Hilliard

Should I go back to school and finish my bachelors? Will a professional degree help me further my career? Are there other opportunities to help me fulfill my goals that are not full time academic programs? This session will help you holistically identify if adding more education to your resume will keep you afloat and what is the best decision for you. We will explore scenarios and signs that are commonly indicated that non-traditional adults are ready to return to school, factors you would want to consider when adding any form of education to your already busy life, as well as final tips for going back into the classroom.

“I‘m retiring…now what?”

Sybil Pressprich

Although many people look forward eagerly to retirement, this major life transition can be unexpectedly challenging to negotiate. How will you remain active? Who will be your circle of friends? What will you do with your time? All these unknowns can be daunting. This session will look at how retirement has changed in recent years and provide a better understanding of the ‘new retirement’. We will also learn about strategies and tools to help you assess your priorities, explore your options, and evaluate your ideas as you develop a plan for a rewarding third quarter of your life.

Tapping Into the Four Tendencies at Work

Maureen Muldoon

“One of the daily challenges of life is: “How do I get people—including myself—to do what I want?” By asking the one simple question, “How do I respond to expectations?” we gain exciting insight into ourselves. And when we know how other people respond to expectations, we understand them far more effectively, as well. We all face two kinds of expectations—outer expectations (meet work deadlines, answer a request from a friend) and inner expectations (keep a New Year’s resolution, start meditating). Our response to expectations determines our “Tendency”—that is, whether we fit into the category of Upholder, Questioner, Obliger, or Rebel.” ~ Gretchen Rubin

  • Attend this workshop to self-identify your own and others tendency
  • Learn through individual reflection and from other participants to get ideas for how to:
  • Make better decisions, meet deadlines, meet our promises to ourselves, suffer less stress, and engage more deeply with others.

Career and Development Conversations: Helping Managers Help You

Christopher East and Brenda Salvo

Career development conversations come up around the dinner table or with good friends, but they hardly ever happen with the manager. Why is that? Maybe the manager feels they cannot meet the employee’s expectations or the employee does not know how to initiate the conversation. Sounds a little like an 8th-grade dance, doesn’t it? Career development conversations can and should be initiated early and often with your manager. Join us in this interactive session where we introduce strategies to adopt as you discuss your professional goals with your manager during formal performance discussions or informal development conversations. Participants will have the opportunity to view and practice conversations during this session. Do not sit on the sidelines, be the person who grabs a partner and starts to dance.

Better Networking: Advancing Career and Life with Real Connections

Keith McHugh

“To go far, go with others” an African proverb advises. Networking isn’t just for business and sales. The benefits of networking can touch many facets of our lives including our career. It’s not just extroverts, either. Quiet types also have strengths that can be put into play when it comes to going for distance with company. This session will cover the whys and the hows, the obvious and the obscured, and the outrights and the insights to networking. This is perfect for networking Rookies, introverts, and anyone else seeking a little motivation to connect with others.

Conference Debrief Discussion

Elizabeth Schrimpf

In this group setting, Staff Career Counselor Elizabeth Schrimpf will facilitate a discussion around individual self-discovery based on conference takeaways. There will be no formal program in this workshop, only an opportunity for attendees to process their experience in a group setting and think critically about post-conference actions to support career growth. Follow-up activities, materials, and support references will be available.

Sorting Out Your Needs: Understanding Values

Elizabeth Schrimpf

What are your values and how do they affect your career? Often, identifying and discussing values can feel awkward and uncomfortable; you are either getting too personal or keep things general and end up with half-hearted, meaningless buzzwords. Without realizing it, many of us have already started to effectively identify and communicate values through pop culture, by identifying with groups and characters from fictional places. In this fun, creative and interactive workshop, participants will learn about how values define workplace habits and engage with a well-known fictional values system (Hogwarts Houses from the Harry Potter series) to examine their own personal values sets and identify ways those values affect their work. Finally, participants will use their values to write a personal mission statement that can be used in a variety of ways for career development. **No prior knowledge of the Harry Potter Series is necessary to participate in this workshop.**

Luck is the Residue of Design: Focusing on the skills you have (or want) and the things you need in life to get lucky in your career change.

Dija Selimi

The idea of changing careers is terrifying because all you know is that you are unhappy. Sometimes the reasons are clear – we realize we don’t like the trajectory or certain aspects of our current career. Sometimes the reasons are a misdirection – we love our work but we’re in a difficult environment or navigating challenging work relationships.

Making a career transition involves understanding these reasons, identifying what you need and what you bring to a career, and clearing the obstacles to make change happen!

Strategies for integrating transferable or “soft” skills into your training programs

Matthew Hora

In this workshop Dr. Hora will discuss the theoretical and empirical background to two of the most valuable transferable or “soft” skills desired by employers – communication and self-regulated learning. With a focus on developing training approaches that fit your unique disciplinary or professional context, Dr. Hora will review some common strategies for incorporating these skills into employee training, onboarding, or professional development opportunities. In this interactive workshop, participants will articulate how these skills are used in their professions, practice some strategies, and brainstorm new ideas with other participants about how to best integrate these skills into their existing training programs.

Find your Super Powers

Moira Kelly and Sybil Pressprich

This session will help you identify the skills at which you are most competent AND the skills you most enjoy using. Sometimes referred to as your “power skills”, knowing what you enjoy and do best can help you clarify your professional goals, write a better resume, or discuss your best attributes during an interview. Join us for this active learning session and get in touch with your super powers! (max. capacity 30—first come first served).

No More Rejections! Write a Resume that Pops!

Christopher East

Is your resume up to date? Are you describing your work and involvements at the highest level? Have your shared your skills strengths and possible areas for skill development with your supervisor? Join Christopher, organizational career development specialist, Learning & Talent Development as he shares effective resume writing techniques, preparing for the screening process, and understanding the value of community involvement.

After this program, you will be able to:

  • Identify the essential elements of a good resume
  • Understand the search and screen process
  • Write effective work descriptions
  • Strategies on how to grow your skills in the workplace

Connecting the Dots: Designing Life & Career

Heather Ferguson

Career development doesn’t start and end with formal schooling, and your career reflects just a portion of your life’s work. While others may oversimplify your role or focus too heavily on your current job (“So…. what do you do for a living?”), you know that is just one piece of the puzzle.

Whether you have multiple interests, need a change of pace, feel stuck in a linear career path, or just want a fresh look at your goals, this workshop is for you! Attend this session for an opportunity to [re]focus on making intentional career decisions and reflect on the role of work in your life.

Building on Your Strengths Using Appreciative Inquiry

Don Schutt

A more affirming career development process can be achieved by combining life-planning concepts with the Appreciative Inquiry process. Using this approach, career development processes emerge as Appreciating, Envisioning, Co-constructing, and Sustaining. This also shifts the focus of the planning process toward a strength-based whole person, whole life approach. Join this session to participate in an Appreciative Interview and learn more about a strengths-based approach to career development using Appreciative Inquiry.

Smart GAINs

Elizabeth Schrimpf

How do you feel about goal setting? Once your goals are set, how confident are you in planning, communicating and maintaining progress toward your goals? The GAIN Model is an innovative approach to framing plans that support goals of all types – short-term, long-term, SMART and not SMART. In this interactive workshop, participants will learn about the GAIN Model, understand how it differs from and relates to SMART goals and have the chance to both frame one of their personal goals and see how GAIN can be used in a variety of goal-related conversations. You will leave not only with a new way to think about your goals, but also some strategies for sharing them and evaluating your progress.