Traditionally, PhD and postdoctoral scientists perform research under the direct mentorship of faculty advisors and are encouraged toward tenure-track research, research or teaching positions in academia, or research in industry. Without formal preparation for other diverse careers, scientists have obtained positions in other biomedical careers in an indirect manner with little career-specific training or support.

Instead BEST programs prepare graduate and postdoctoral scientists for a range of careers. Common BEST programmatic themes, such as experiential learning (e.g., internships and externships) and professional development (e.g., team building and management) will directly guide PhD and postdoctoral scientists to many career possibilities, such as administration, law, industry/biotechnology, science policy/communication, government and other science careers, which are viewed as equal, successful and well-suited career outcomes. These career options can be pursued during any stage of training from the early years of graduate school to late into a postdoctoral fellowship.

Adapted from Meyers, et al. FASEB J, under revision (2015)

Adapted from Meyers, et al. FASEB J, under revision (2015)

The guides in this section outline the best ways to assist your PhD and postdoctoral scientists in their career development and how to strengthen your institution’s program.