Graduate Student and Postdoc Scholarly Success

Would you like to

  • Forge positive and productive relationships with your peers and advisors?
  • Explore approaches to better managing your time and boosting productivity?
  • Acquire strategies to thrive in the uniquely demanding context of graduate school?

Here at McGraw, we recognize that the experience of graduate school is qualitatively different from undergraduate study, that the approaches to learning and productivity that worked well for you in college may no longer suffice, and that many of the skills necessary to flourish in academia remain untaught. We work to reveal this “hidden curriculum” while helping you identify personal strengths, attain individual goals, and develop supportive relationships with peers, colleagues, and mentors as you grow into independent scholars and professionals.  Our ultimate goal is to equip you with skills and strategies to promote meaningful scholarship, effective collaboration, and holistic well-being so that you flourish in the academy and beyond.

Please take a look at our current offerings, below, and if you have ideas about other ways that we can support you or your peers, please let us know!

Contact Dr. Laura Murray, Assistant Director,

Coaching for Learning and Thriving in the Academy

What is academic coaching?

Coaching is a strengths-based, voluntary, individualized developmental process that

  • Builds a person’s capability to realize his/her/their potential
  • Achieve short- and long-term learning, personal, and professional goals, and
  • Experience thriving across multiple domains both within and beyond the academy

It is conducted through 1:1 interactions, and based on mutual trust and respect.
Coach and "coachee" work as partners over time, with the coachee setting the agenda and the coach acting as a “thinking partner.”

The over-arching goal is to co-create awareness, knowledge, strategies, and action to promote learning and thriving, with "thriving" defined subjectively by the coachee.

In our program, you can choose to meet with a McGraw staff person or with a graduate peer coach.  You are also welcome to meet with us once to discuss a specific issue, or you can take advantage of a series of sessions over time.  All sessions are currently offered virtually via Zoom, they are approximately 50 minutes in length, and they are confidential and free of charge.

If you would like to schedule a coaching consultation, please email Dr. Laura Murray directly here:

Grad Peer Coaches

“We get it because we’ve been there. And our goal is to help you thrive.”

Our Grad Peer Coaches are post-Generals doctoral candidates representing disciplines and departments across the university, and they hail from all over the world.  They are all deeply committed to supporting Princeton graduate students, and they have completed intensive training in coaching methods as well as in topics salient to graduate student experiences.  They also all participate in ongoing training and supervision at McGraw.

You can read more about the Grad Peer Coaches, and ask to meet with a specific person by emailing Dr. Laura Murray.

You and your coach will choose a time to speak via Zoom that is mutually convenient, and you are welcome to continue to work with the same coach going forward, and/or you can work with multiple people. 


The overarching aim of this slate of workshops is to equip graduate students with skills, strategies, and tools to help you meet the expectations and demands of graduate education at Princeton while fostering your development as productive and purposeful students and scholars. Graduate training makes new demands on students with respect to mastering content, but it also offers opportunities to develop expertise in managing time and energy, planning large research projects, writing and publishing, collaborating effectively, achieving a balanced lifestyle, and a host of other skills that are not taught explicitly. These practical, hands-on workshops will address certain untaught, yet essential areas of development so that you can achieve personal and professional goals with less stress and greater wellbeing.

Supportive Conversations for Grad Students

If you are a grad student or postdoc looking to connect with colleagues and peers while also exploring topics related to maintaining research and scholarship during COVD-19, please join us for weekly and informal “supportive conversations.”  If you have strategies or tools to share that have helped to support your work or well-being during social distancing, or if you’d just like to connect with supportive colleagues navigating similar challenges, please join the conversation.

Virtual Writing Groups for Post-Generals Graduate Students

Are you eager to develop a community of writers and feel motivated to write? Are you looking for the incentive to write regularly, and to practice communicating your ideas to supportive readers outside your discipline?  Each term, we sponsor small, robust, interdisciplinary groups of post-Generals graduate students to meet online and discuss writing.