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Proactive, Reflection, Empowered, Planning (PREP) Career Program

This Program is Open to All Postdocs in the STEM, Biomed, Humanities, and Social Sciences Fields Who:

  • need clarity in formulating the next steps for a career plan or finding a career path or fit
  • need guidance on how to stand out from the competition and to take the next steps in their career journey
  • need to better manage and maximize their training and career
  • are ready for a career transition but struggle to find and communicate what their unique contribution and professional value are

Using the fundaments of YouMap®, a holistic self-discovery tool, Dr. Itzamarie Chévere-Torres, certified YouMap® coach and facilitator, will guide participants to discover their four pillars of career fit and satisfaction (Strengths, Values, Skills, and Personality). Both self-awareness and early career planning are essential for career advancement and success. To experience fulfillment, your work & life must align with your:

  • Strengths (natural talents)
  • Values (what’s most important to us)
  • Preferred skills (skills that we are good at and enjoy)
  • Personality-based interests (how we are wired, our motivations)
shaking hands


As a result of participating in this 4-part workshop series, postdocs will:

  • receive a workbook and personalized YouMap® profile that illustrates their career fit.
  • increase their self-awareness about their four pillars of career fit and satisfaction (strengths, values, preferred skills, and personality-based interests)
  • be better prepared to identify what they need to experience career fulfillment or best career fit
  • be equipped and empowered to showcase their professional value to peers, colleagues, and future employers.

Commitment to attend all four workshops is required to be accepted into this program. Space is limited. Selected applicants are required to complete four self-assessment tools (Gallup StrengthsFinder®, YouMap® Value Assessment, YouMap® Preferred Skills, and Career123test®).

For more information or questions about the PREP career program, contact Itzamarie Chévere-Torres, Director of the Office of Postdoctoral Advancement:

Group gathering to brainstorm
shaking hands
Group gathering to brainstorm

Accordion Content

  • The program meets once every week for four weeks, two hours each time. To participate in the program, you are committing to dedicate about 3 hours per week, which includes the two-hour workshop each week and 1 hour of post-workshop assignments each week.  

    Commitment to attend all four workshops and complete four self-assessments prior to the start of the program is required to participate and receive a certificate of completion. 

    This program is for individuals who: 

    • need clarity in formulating next steps for a career plan or finding career path or fit
    • need guidance on how to stand out from the competition 
    • are ready for a career transition but struggle to communicate their unique contribution and professional value

    Additional topics may include:  

    • Your Unique Professional Value 
    • Career Fit & Fulfillment  
    • Your Deal Breakers & Deal Makers 
    • Leveraging Your Strengths and Skills – to be more efficient and productive
    • Goal Setting – supported by your strengths
    • Mosaic of Mentors Map 
  • Location:
    Rutgers Alumni House | Van Nest Hall
    19 College Avenue, New Brunswick, NJ 08901

    Metered street parking is available on Hamilton St. and Somerset St. Nearby faculty/staff lots for those with parking permits are Lot 26, Lot 30, and the College Ave. Parking Deck, all of which are near the College Avenue Student Center (CASC) bus stop. You may take the A, EE, H, or LX buses from the CASC bus stop to The Yard (Scott Hall) bus stop, and Rutgers Alumni House is a short walk from there.

    • Week 1: Getting to Know Your StrengthsUncover how you like to work and how you prioritize; draft your value statement.
      March 13, 1:30 to 4 pm
    • Week 2: Your Values & Skills –  Uncover why and where you work, what you work on, tasks that energize you, and learn how to avoid burnout.
      March 20, 1:30 to 4 pm

    • Week 3: Personality-based Interests & Unique ContributionWho you are and what motivates you; uncover your professional value and unique contribution.
      March 27, 1:30 to 4 pm
    • Week 4: Setting Goals (supported by your strengths and preferred skills) – Develop a support network using a Mosaic of Mentors Map to advance your career goals.
      April 3, 1:30 to 4 pm

    Each week builds upon the previous week's discussion, so it is essential to commit to attending all four weeks to experience the full benefit of the program.


Writing Testinonial

“Participating in the PREP program gave me more confidence in future decisions and made it easier and natural to showcase myself. It was a good opportunity to put my head into the "business world" without the anxiety and pressure associated with job searches.”

Sharing Testimonial

“The most impactful influence of the PREP program was to really articulate and identify my strengths and values and compare those to the career path that I think that I want and where it could go right or wrong. Defining motivated and burnout skills really clarified the things that bring me joy about the prospect of my future career and the parts of my current working environment that do not.”

SHaring Testimonial

“This was an amazing program. I am at the start of my transition stage and this program has helped me a lot to understand the initial step of Job search. I now feel it is very important to understand your strengths and weaknesses, discovering your skillsets through interaction, your burnout skills. I can make a huge list of what I gained from this workshop. I especially loved the first 4 pillars workshop. Trust me I am using that folder of my Youmap and those documents for almost everything.”

Writing Testimonial

“It was actually a good exercise to understand what I like whenever I see any job application and whatnot. It was such a safe forum where I can share my personal thoughts about career development, what I lack and what I want.”

Looking at data, testimonial

"I have struggled to find the precise language to convey my contributions. I also have had very negative experiences in the job market, as several interviewers have pointed out how unfit I am for those jobs. Hearing that was not easy to process because I did not have the means to turn that idea around and be able to consider that perhaps the employer and job were unfit for me. I now have the language to have a say on the matter. Had I known that before, I would have spared myself a lot of mental stress".

Reading book

"I was able to recognize my strengths, be proud of them, and use them in my favor because, at times, I don't give myself enough credit. However, through this program, I was able to value and appreciate what I have and how I utilize my strengths every day towards my career goals".