PAWS (Professional Advancement Workshop Series) is a program designed to teach you insights, tools, and actions for effectively navigating next steps of your career in academia or anywhere. The audience for these programs is early career researchers and anyone considering a career transition to learn about careers in academia, non-profits organizations, government, NASA management, national labs, and industry. These will be approximately monthly 90 minute interactive seminars led by experts in their crafts and fields. Future speakers will cover many different topics, so we encourage you to follow along with it and all that we’ll do! 

PAWS is sponsored by NASA’s Astrobiology Program and is intended to serve the current astrobiology community, and those that might join it in the future. Advanced registration is required for these events.

Please direct all questions and comments to the PAWS Lead, Dr. Jessica Noviello (

Resources and Further Reading

MyIDP (from AAS). This tool helps you rank your skills by your comfort with them and how much you enjoy doing them to guide you towards ideal career paths:

Science PhDs lead to enjoyable jobs (March 7, 2018):

Reimagining STEM Workforce Development as a Braided River (April 19, 2021):

Researchers’ career insecurity needs attention and reform now, says international coalition (June 8, 2021):

Choose Your Own Geoscience Adventure (August 24, 2021):

Previous PAWS Events

PAWS #2: Get Ready to Interview: Mine Your Skills and Tame Your Nerves
Amy Aines returns to prepare attendees for the interviews that come in a job search. She teaches us how to identify the parts of your training that best exemplify your skills, how to highlight your strengths, and how to graciously talk about your weaknesses. This event was held on September 28th, 2021 on Zoom. The recording and associated resources are linked here:

PAWS #1: Preparing for a Fulfilling Career Transition: Which Job? Which Company?
Amy Aines leads attendees through identifying what it means for a job or a company to be a good match with them and their skills and encouraging them to explore unexpected options when searching for the next job. This event was held on August 31, 2021 on Zoom. The recording and associated resources are linked here: