Career & Tools

Check out this UCSB series on grad student and postdoc professional development experiences funded by the Individualized Professional Skills (IPS) Program. Our latest featured video is by Heath Pennington, a graduate student in the Department of Theater and Dance, who pursued certification from the Intimacy Professionals Association. Read on to watch their video and learn more about the IPS program!

By Chava Nerenberg, Graduate Programming Assistant
Wednesday, March 3rd, 2021 - 9:00am

Have you ever wished you had support to take advantage of a professional or career development opportunity that lies outside the scope of your academic research? The UCSB Individualized Professional Skills (IPS) Program is designed to help graduate students and postdoctoral scholars fill in the funding gaps for pursuing opportunities that support your professional development in a variety of career trajectories.

IPS Insights: We are excited to continue our series, "IPS Insights," where previous awardees share about their IPS-funded experiences in short, informational videos. Our latest featured video is by Heath Pennington, a graduate student in the Department of Theater and Dance.

Heath pursued certification from the Intimacy Professionals Association. Watch their video to learn more about their experience!

In Heath's Words: What I Learned

"Intimacy professionals in the emerging fields of Intimacy Coordination (for film and television) and Intimacy Direction (for theatre) work to ensure actors and crew produce safe and consensual performances of simulated sex and nudity on stage and on camera. This summer I undertook a certification program in order to learn how to help productions portray intimacy with safety, specificity, and authenticity. As a certified intimacy professional, I now have the theoretical and practical knowledge necessary to enter the profession with legitimacy, and have expanded a toolkit which will benefit me within and beyond the academy."

IPS Program Overview

Awards up to $1000 are granted to eligible UCSB graduate students and postdoctoral scholars from any discipline who wish to individually tailor their career paths with outside professional development opportunities. The purpose of the IPS program is to help grad students and postdocs take greater agency in their own career path by funding exploration of a range of professional development opportunities across a variety of career and skill interests.

The IPS Program is a collaboration between the Professional Development Series at the Center for Science and Engineering Partnerships; the Graduate Division; the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; UCSB Innovation and Entrepreneurship initiative and CNSI Technology Incubator; Career Services; UCSB SACNAS Career Pathways Program via DoD HBCU/MI award W911NF-20-1-0294; UCSB's divisional deans; and external donors. Learn more about the program here!