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Career Development & Networking

To Be or Not to Be a Post-doc? A Recurring Dilemma

A recent article published in Nature, The future of the postdoc, painted a very bleak picture of how there is a “growing number of post-docs and few places in academia”, a concern that I am very much familiar with. As an Early Career Research Scientist, nearing the end of my first post-doc, I am faced…

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5 Tips to Help you While you Transition From Academia

After a decade of toiling in the lab, dreaming in colorful dots (flow cytometry is my favorite technique) and endlessly pursuing a Nature article, I finally decided to hang up my lab coat. I knew several people who had successfully made the transition from academia. Also, I had attended countless alternate science career seminars while…

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The Leap of Faith – Are You Ready for Biotech?

So let’s just say, hypothetically, that you’re defending your thesis in 2 months and it’s only recently occurred to you that “I really should figure out what I’m doing after grad school.” Or you’re a post-doc whose boss just informed you that they’re interviewing for a position 2 time zones away. Or you’re a technician…

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Do’s and Don’ts of Writing a Cover Letter

A cover letter is a letter written to accompany a job application, a grant application, project reports, manuscripts, etc. that explains the purpose of your writing and incorporates certain key points of your application. It plays a decisive role in accomplishing the task it’s been written for, which is why it is so important to…

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How to Stay on the Margin of Academia During Your Gap Year(s)

The gap year I intended to take between my Master’s degree and hypothetical Ph.D. is now going into its 4th year. Here’s why I’m not worried. These days it seems like undergraduates are proceeding en masse to graduate programs shortly after completing their senior year of college. An abundance of undergraduate research opportunities and poor…

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How to Communicate Your Way to Scientific Success

As a new postdoc, I found myself in an uncomfortable situation. In my new environment, I am constantly in contact with my mentor and fellow lab members. I must regularly communicate with them and I have routine access to a sounding board for advice and troubleshooting. While I recognize the value of this situation, I initially found it difficult to navigate.

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The Why and How of Promoting Your Science Publication Online.

In the frenzy of today’s scientific publication landscape, it is essential to take a proactive stand at your online visibility and reputation. There are online tools that can help you make yourself spotted and translate your hard work and high-quality science into actual impact. So if you are interested in improving your chance of landing…

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How to Choose a PhD Topic

Choosing a PhD topic can be very hard. There are a lot of things to consider from the subject to the supervisor. Here are some tips to help you choose. Find out what you really like This is the first topic because it is the most important. My first advice would be to get some…

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My job as a Clinical Study Coordinator

Clinical Trial Coordinator, Clinical Study Coordinator, and Clinical Research Coordinator are all names for the same job and refer to the person responsible for the day-to-day running of human trials. Usually when I tell someone that I’m a Clinical Study Coordinator, they have no idea what that means. I guess it’s like when someone tells…

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Getting Started with a Job in Science Communication

As a graduate student or PhD scientist you are likely to be surrounded by plenty of career advice and options – that is, if you’re interested in a career in academic research or the biotechnology and pharmaceutical industries. Those of us who aren’t sold on either of those fields are left wondering what other career…

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How do I REALLY Figure out What I Want to do After Graduation?

During my second year in graduate school, I (silently) started freaking about life post-PhD. I read voraciously about science writing, scientific editing and business consulting positions. I went to seminars offered by the career center at my school. But, I was still lost. Between all the pipetting and PCRs, I could not figure out what…

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Getting to Know Your h-index

You’re applying for your first tenure-track position, and you’ve heard that your dream department uses something called the h-index to decide who will get interviews. It’s an increasingly common scenario: institutions are now regularly using the h-index to help make hiring and promotion decisions, especially when they have to screen many applicants. For that reason,…

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Career Highlight: Technical Officer

An ad about a Technical Officer position is usually nebulous. For example: “The post holder work as part of a technical team and provide both routine and specialist services in support of undergraduate, postgraduate, outreach and revenue-earning activities.” What Does a Technical Officer Do? In fact, a technical officer role can be summarized in two…

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