Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Center for Genetic Medicine

Life After Graduation

Northwestern graduates find employment all across the country, and the majority of our students have secured a job prior to graduation. Students benefit from graduating in March, when the job market is less saturated with new graduates. The program faculty are committed to helping students succeed in their job search by offering resume writing workshops, Q&A panels with new graduates, and practice interview sessions. Many students also have the opportunity to interview for jobs at the NSGC annual educational conference in their second year.

Below, several recent Northwestern graduates share their first job experience:

Allison Goetsch, Class of 2014

After graduating from the Northwestern GPGC program in 2014, my thesis advisor offered me a temporary position to work within the Oncofertility Consortium at Northwestern University. I was able to spend almost five months working full-time at the consortium researching complex medical conditions known to impair fertility, developing patient and provider education materials, and building out the Consortium website. My passion for fertility preservation and restoration did not end when I began my current position as a pediatric genetic counselor at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago. While I have developed exciting new interests, I’ve also been able to incorporate my role within the Oncofertility Consortium into my every day work at Lurie Children’s. For example, I provide genetic counseling in the Disorders of Sexual Development clinic and am currently co-writing a medical textbook focused on fertility preservation and restoration for complex medical conditions and treatments known to impair fertility.

Northwestern prepared me to be more than just a clinician and researcher. I can proudly call myself a leader and a teacher thanks to the professional development skills I learned as a student and continue to learn as a core faculty member of the Northwestern GPGC program and Instructor within Feinberg School of Medicine. I use my skill set every day as I coordinate several multidisciplinary clinics at Lurie Children’s Hospital, including the Neurofibromatosis Clinic and the 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome Clinic. Additionally, I have discovered joy in supervising students in clinical rotations, serving as thesis advisor to students, and providing lectures. My career as genetic counselor has blossomed thanks to the foundation, values, and connections I developed as a graduate student at Northwestern University. I hope I inspire current and future students to pursue a genetic counseling career about which they are equally passionate. Simply put, “If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.”

Lauren Siems, Class of 2016

Since graduating the Northwestern GPGC in March of this year, I started as a field-based Regional Medical Specialist for Myriad Genetics as a member of their Preventive Care/Women's Health team. During my time at Northwestern, I took advantage of an opportunity to complete a cancer genetic counseling rotation in Burbank, CA during the summer. I now work with physicians and their offices all over the Southern California area by offering my clinical support and guidance for their Hereditary Cancer Risk Assessment programs. Northwestern prepared me for my current position in a variety of ways, including multiple exposures to non-traditional genetic counseling roles and the ability to work with many accomplished GC supervisors and health care providers. Northwestern takes a unique and progressive approach to training future genetic counselors, stressing professional development and personalized medicine, which continues to inspire me in my current position. I am so grateful for my time at Northwestern and look forward to seeing the program grow and lead to many more genetic counselors who will take our field into the future of health care.

Jessica Stoll, Class of 2014

I began working at the University of Chicago Medicine immediately after graduating from Northwestern in March 2014, and I currently serve as the Assistant Director of the Gastrointestinal Cancer Risk and Prevention Clinic.  In my clinical role at University of Chicago, I counsel patients primarily for hereditary gastrointestinal cancer susceptibility syndromes, including indications such as colorectal, gastric, and pancreatic cancer.  I also work with the pancreatic diseases team, providing counseling for hereditary pancreatitis.  Outside of my clinical responsibilities, much of my time is spent on educational activities, including providing lectures for physicians and trainees at University of Chicago and in the broader genetics community as well as for patients and families in the Chicagoland area.  My time at Northwestern provided me amazing exposure to a wide variety of clinic settings and counseling experiences.  I also learned a great deal about clinical research and have been able to apply this experience to my position in an academic medical center.   My current position has allowed me the opportunity to hone my expertise in a more specific area of cancer genetics and to work with one of the leading experts in GI cancer risk assessment in the Chicagoland area, which I continue to enjoy every day.