Dr. Jennifer Polk, is an entrepreneur, career coach, and expert on PhD careers. She earned Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts titles from Carleton University. In 2012, she earned her PhD in history from the University of Toronto.
In 2013, she launched From PhD to Life, a career coaching and speaking business. Since then, she’s worked 1-on-1 and in groups with graduate students and doctoral degree holders based in Canada, the United States, the UK, Australia, and elsewhere.
Jen has spoken on university campuses and at academic and professional conferences throughout North America on issues related to graduate education and career outcomes for PhDs. Her writing has appeared in the Globe and Mail, University Affairs, Inside Higher Ed, the Chronicle of Higher Education’s Vitae portal, and Academic Matters. Her University Affairs blog, From PhD to Life, won three gold awards at the Canadian Online Publishing Awards. She’s also contributed essays to two books: Moving On: Essays on the Aftermath of Leaving Academia, and Reflections on Academic Lives: Identities, Struggles, and Triumphs in Graduate School and Beyond.
She created and hosted Self-Employed PhD, an online network of freelancers, independent consultants, entrepreneurs, and small business owners. For three years Jen hosted #withaPhD chat, a twice-monthly Twitter discussion. She co-founded Beyond the Professoriate (2014-20) and in that capacity (among many other activities) produced online conferences attended by hundreds of graduate students, PhDs, and career education professionals.
Jen is actively engaged in online conversations about careers for PhDs, especially on Twitter (you can follow her at @FromPhDtoLife).