The department, college, and university offer a number of resources that graduate students may find useful as they advance through the program.

  • The department maintains a Blackboard Organizations page for the graduate program. Here you can find a variety of resources including examples of successful fellowship and grant applicants, dissertations proposals, and job market materials. New resources are added regularly.

  • Soci graduate students coordinate a Graduate Mentorship Program that pairs incoming graduate students with more advanced students to ease the academic, professional, and social transition to a PhD program. Mentors and mentees are matched based on overlap in faculty mentors, research interests, and incoming students’ stated needs. All mentors and mentees are expected to attend a Fall Introductory luncheon. Graduate mentors provide advice on things less often discussed with faculty mentors: maintaining a social life, balancing coursework with research, building a social media presence, or finding a place to live.

  • The Graduate School holds a yearly Fellowship Boot Camp designed for early career PhD students who are applying for the NSF GRFP and Ford Pre-Doctoral Fellowships. It is a 10-day intensive writing workshop in which participants learn about these fellowships and complete a personal statement. Participants may be eligible for a travel or research award of up to $1,000 if they submit a complete proposal to one of the identified fellowships.

  • USC is an institutional member to the National Center for Faculty Development & Diversity (NCFDD), which means that you all can register for individual accounts for free. They have a ton of materials for graduate students including a Dissertation Success Curriculum and a three-part series on the academic job market. They have a variety of materials for earlier stages as well, such as on establishing a writing practice and overcoming imposter syndrome.

  • The College provides a 5-year Dornsife PhD Academy to support students with consistent professionalization programming and training in leadership principles, financial management, public speaking, communication, and other cross-cutting skills. Students can elect to pursue a Ph.D. Academy Certificate in Communication, Leadership, and Management.

  • The Center for Excellence in Teaching (CET) promotes a vibrant culture of teaching and learning, providing teaching and course design resources for the USC community, schools, and faculty. Many of our students choose to complete the Future Faculty Teaching Institute. The Institute is a training program for USC graduate students and postdoctoral fellows intended to prepare future faculty to pursue excellence in their teaching, beginning with exposure to an essential background in course design and teaching. Participants who complete a minimum of 12 sessions will be awarded a certificate of completion.

  • USC has partnered with Versatile PhD, a forum that helps currently enrolled PhD students in the humanities, social science, and STEM disciplines identify and prepare for non-academic careers.

  • The department maintains an active Alpha Kappa Delta (AKD) chapter. AKD is the international sociology honor society and was founded in 1920 at USC. AKD provides additional programming (e.g., teaching workshops, editor’s panels) and funding opportunities.