Hit the Ground Running: A professional development program for post-doctoral scholars

 In 2018 Abstracts

Hit the Ground Running: A professional development program for post-doctoral scholars

Sharona E. Gordon, University of Washington

PDF of slides

The mission of Hit the Ground Running is to empower postdocs to: define their authentic scientific identity; to build a supportive community of peers and mentors; to practice skills needed to run a successful group; to market themselves as candidates and independent scientists; and to contribute to diversity and inclusion of the biomedical workforce. This 2-year course takes postdoctoral scholars through many of the challenges faced each day by academic researchers through monthly meetings. Although not all our postdoctoral scholars aspire to progress their careers within the academy, many of the skills included in the course will be useful for those on nonacademic career paths as well. Feedback from our previous postdoctoral scholars, as well as our own experience, indicates that new assistant professors feel as though they are “dropped into the deep end of the pool without knowing how to swim.” We believe that these feelings of near-drowning can be avoided or mitigated by increasing the preparation we provide as part of postdoctoral training. The goal of this program of Academic Preparation for Postdoctoral Scholars is to provide skills and information so that postdoctoral scholars transitioning to independent academic positions know what to expect and how to manage many of the challenges they will face.

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