KCGIP Professional Development Week

The Knight Campus Graduate Internship Program (KCGIP) welcomed its latest academic cohort of 83 students in June with a Professional Development and Orientation Week designed to support students in the accelerated master’s program as well as their future careers.

KCGIP is nationally recognized for its innovative approach to graduate education – designed to meet the technology needs of industry. The 25-year-old program has a 98 percent graduation rate and more than half of its students identify with groups, including women, traditionally underrepresented in STEM fields. Students in the program can pursue specializations in bioinformatics, molecular sensors and biotechnology, optics, polymers, photovoltaics and semiconductors, and a soon-to-be-added data science track.

The week-long orientation, which precedes the start of immersive technical coursework, focuses on building community and cultivating strong professional relationships while introducing students to a breadth of leadership topics. Workshops covered themes of active listening as a leadership tool; work-life balance and mental health; introduction to DEI; and conflict-resolution. Throughout the week, students build community with each other during coffee breaks, catered lunches, and small group workshop discussions. Participants were also able to put their networking skills to use and begin engaging with corporate partners during an afternoon mixer with 32 KCGIP alumni in attendance representing 21 companies in attendance.

Alumna Shatrine Zachary, a process support engineer at Applied Materials, spoke to the value of the networking and community building aspects of the program.

“If I could leave students with any piece of advice, it would be to build relationships and create connections throughout their career,” Zachary said. “Technical experience is built organically throughout day-to-day work, but building a professional network requires intention and will open so many doors. The networking mixer is just one of the many ways the KCGIP supports student and alumni success.”

Learn more about KCGIP.