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PhDs at Work: Non-Academic Careers for Humanities and & Arts Graduates

Did you know that a faculty position at a university is only one of many possible career paths you could take with a doctorate in the humanities or arts? Join us for a lively conversation with four humanities PhDs who have found rewarding careers outside academia. Dinner will be served.
Valerie Ross
Upper School English Teacher, Castilleja School
PhD in Literature, UC Santa Cruz, 1996
Valerie Ross teaches upper school English at Castilleja, an independent school for girls in grades six through twelve in Palo Alto. She came to Castilleja in 2007 from Stanford University where she taught freshmen in the Introduction to Humanities Program, and then served for three years as the Associate Director for the Humanities of Stanford's Center for Teaching and Learning. Before Stanford, she taught literature and freshman humanities at the University of California Santa Cruz for several years. In all of her courses she combines her love of literature, social criticism, theater, and philosophy with an emphasis on the development of critical thinking, textual analysis, and persuasive writing skills.
Tyler Schnoebelen
Chief Analyst, Idibon
PhD in Linguistics, Stanford University, 2012
As a doctoral student in Linguistics at Stanford, Tyler Schnoebelen studied experimental psycholinguistics, conducted fieldwork on endangered languages, and wrote a dissertation on emotion. He currently works as Chief Analyst at Idibon, a San Francisco startup that uses cutting-edge natural language processing and data science to help companies understand their language data. Tyler’s insights on social media have been featured in The New York Times Magazine, The Boston Globe, The Atlantic, and NPR. He is incorrigible.
Matthew Tiews
Executive Director of Arts Programs at Stanford University
PhD in Comparative Literature, Stanford University, 2004
Matthew Tiews assumed the newly created role of Executive Director of Arts Programs at Stanford in 2010. His charge is to implement the university-wide Arts Initiative, which seeks to place the arts at the core of a Stanford education and to make the university a leader in the arts nation-wide. He is responsible for the Stanford Arts Institute, Stanford Live and the Bing Concert Hall, and the Anderson Collection at Stanford University. Tiews was formerly at the Stanford Humanities Center, where he oversaw programming and operations, and was particularly active in developing collaborations bringing together the arts and the humanities. Prior to that, he served at the Townsend Center for the Humanities at UC Berkeley, the Stanford Humanities Laboratory, and as managing editor of the journal Modernism/modernity. Tiews trained in acting and piano performance, holds a B.A. from Yale and a Ph.D. from Stanford in Comparative Literature, and is coeditor of the multidisciplinary publication Crowds (Stanford University Press, 2007), which won the Modernist Studies Association book prize.
Jessica Weare
Philanthropy and Civic Engagement Manager, Microsoft
PhD in English, Stanford University, 2011
Jessica Weare received her B.A. in English from Yale in 2002, and completed her Ph.D. in English at Stanford in 2011.  Her dissertation, Competing Narratives: British Memoirs and Fictions of the First World War, used the novels and memoirs of five British writers who lived through the First World War to delineate the boundaries of genre, authenticity, and fictionality in modernist literature.  In 2003 she was awarded an Andrew W. Mellon Fellowship in Humanistic Studies by the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation.  In 2007 she received a Centennial Teaching Award from Stanford's English department, and in 2009-2010 she was named a Mellon Fellow by the Stanford Humanities Center.  Since joining Microsoft in early 2012, Jessica has granted over $6 million in cash and software, managed the company's Bay Area employee engagement program to an 84% participation rate, and helped launch the first-ever online giving event in Silicon Valley, which raised over $8 million for local non-profits in a single day.
Russell Berman
Walter A. Haas Professor in the Humanities
Professor of Comparative Literature and German Studies



Tuesday, October 21, 2014. 05:00PM


Stanford Humanities Center, Watt Room


School of Humanities and Sciences