It takes more than an advanced degree to succeed in today’s increasingly competitive job market. In addition to offering USC Dornsife Ph.D. students a broad and deep training in both disciplinary and interdisciplinary fields, the Dornsife Ph.D. Academy provides training in leadership principles, financial management, public speaking, communication, and other cross-cutting skills.

Beginning in their first year of graduate school, Ph.D. students across USC Dornsife will participate together as a cohort across a wide variety of fields in activities designed to prepare them for their future careers – inside or outside of the academy. After completing the five-year program, Dornsife doctoral students will have a unique set of skills and training, in addition to their deep disciplinary expertise that will set them apart from those graduating from other universities.

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Ph.D. Academy Mission

To prepare Dornsife Ph.D. students to:

  • excel at graduate education;
  • stand out among their peers; and
  • become leaders in their chosen professions


The Ph.D. Academy curriculum focuses on 5 themes to set up students for success throughout their doctoral program. The curriculum focuses on a different theme for each year of their program.

Program Exploration

Find resources in the Humanities, Natural Sciences, and Social Sciences.

Skill Development

Explore resources to develop soft and hard skills that will allow you to be successful during your doctoral program and in your career.

Career Options

Discover different academic career options and 100+ career paths beyond academia.

Ph.D. Academy Events

The Ph.D. Academy hosts academic success, professional development, and social events throughout the year, exclusive to Ph.D. Academy students!

USC Resources

USC provides many resources for students, ranging from financial assistance to mental health support. Discover what the university has to offer.

Dornsife Ph.D. Academy

Open 9:00am-5:00pm

3551 Trousdale Parkway, ADM 304
Los Angeles, CA 90089-4012