The decision rests with the student and the student’s Research Advisory Committee as to the timing of the student’s entry to the job market. Planning for the job market begins in the Spring semester before the academic year when the student plans to be on the market. The student should apply for a Dissertation Fellowship to cover the final year in the program, in the Spring previous to that final year. Then, the formal process of finding a job will begin early in the fall semester. The key participants in the student’s job search will be the Graduate Secretary, the Placement Director, and the student’s Research Advisory Committee.
· The Graduate Secretary coordinates the mailing and uploading of the student’s recommendation letters from faculty members, along with other administrative tasks related to job search.
· The Placement Director conducts information meetings for students on the job market to fill them in on the details of applications to academic and non-academic institutions, job interviews at the ASSA meetings, and how to coordinate campus visits and visits to non-academic institutions. The department places great importance on helping students obtain professional positions. The Graduate Secretary and the Placement Director set up a website with information on our students on the job market, and mail the same information in a physical packet to numerous institutions that hire Ph.D. economists.
· The Placement Director plays a coordinating role in the matching of students with jobs, but the primary responsibility for a student’s placement lies with the Research Advisory Committee, and particularly with the Dissertation Chair. Recommendation letters, typically written by the Research Advisory Committee members (though not necessarily) play an important role in the job market process. The Research Advisory Committee has primary responsibility for making personal contacts in the field to help place the student.
Timing on the job market is typically as follows:
· September: The student should make sure that his or her job market paper (the paper that will be the central contribution in the dissertation, and that the student will present in job market seminars) is complete and polished. The student should consult job listings – principally Job Openings For Economists – and develop a list of institutions to which he or she wishes to apply, in consultation with the Research Advisory Committee.
· October: Students apply for positions, with the help of the Graduate Secretary. Students should make sure that faculty members submit their recommendation letters to the Graduate Secretary.
· October/November: Students present their job market papers in a 90-minute seminar setting at least once.
· December: Students should hear from institutions who wish to schedule interviews at the ASSA Meetings.
· Early January: ASSA meetings are held. This is where interviews of job candidates occur. These interviews are typically held in hotel rooms and last 30 minutes.
· Institutions with job openings develop short lists from their interviews at the ASSA meetings and arrange visits for people on those lists. The matching process continues through the spring semester, with most institutions making their first job offers in early to mid-February.