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The POSTDOCket

Volume 15, Issue 1 (January 2017)

Jennifer Lamberts and Leo Cheng


The 15th NPA Annual Meeting, hosted by The University of California System, will be held March 17-19, 2017, at the Fairmont Hotel in San Francisco, CA. The Annual Meeting promises to be an informative and dynamic event for postdoctoral scholars and leaders of postdoc offices and associations (PDOs and PDAs). Online registration will close no later than March 3, 2017. A limited number of registrations are available. In 2016, NPA had to close registration early due to space restrictions, so be sure to register early to guarantee your spot!

 

NPA will host Peter Fiske, PhD, as the keynote speaker. In addition to his experience as a scientist and executive, Fiske is a nationally recognized author and lecturer on career development and leadership for scientists. You can find more information about him on NPA’s 2017 Annual Meeting webpage.

 

The meeting will also have two plenary sessions. The first plenary session will feature Nancy Calvin-Naylor, PhD, from the Institute for Research on Innovation & Science (IRIS). She will share insights from UMETRICS, developed by IRIS and the Committee on Institutional Cooperation. UMETRICS offers a new approach to evaluate the outcomes and impacts of academic research. The session will also feature Kay Lund, PhD, director of the Division of Biomedical Research Workforce Programs at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). She will speak about postdoc salaries in the wake of pending updates to the Fair Labor and Standards Act (FLSA) and the commitment NIH has made to postdocs. The second plenary session will address the importance of understanding organizational behavior for postdoctoral scholars. The session will feature Kevin Grigsby, MSW, DSW, senior director of Member Organizational Development at Association of American Medical Colleges, and Claudia Adkinson, JD, PhD, retired executive associate dean and chief operating officer at Emory University School of Medicine. Grigsby’s presentation will focus on scholarship in relation to organizational behavior, while Adkinson will speak on the subject of risk management.

 

There will be four concurrent sessions throughout the 2017 Annual Meeting. Each session will present five to six workshops, either 60 or 90 minutes in length. Some will have an Innovation in Action (IIA) tag. These workshops are more interactive and devoted to participant-driven discussions with the aim of brainstorming problems and solutions among all session attendees.

 

This year, after a very competitive review and selection process, we are pleased to offer workshops that best represent the interests of our community. These workshops cover a wide variety of topics: scientific communication, professional networking and career development, organizational culture, diversity, advocacy, and international postdoc scholars. We believe that you will find the right workshops that fit your interest. Finally, a special myPDO session will focus specifically on understanding past, present, and future dynamics of the postdoctoral experience. This session is intended for PDOs, PDAs, and individual postdocs.

 

There will be opportunities throughout the meeting to network. We are bringing back the Career Connection session to help postdoctoral scholars meet prospective employers and understand the current and future job markets that represent a wide variety of career options. NPA will also host an opening reception, networking breaks between meeting sessions, and lunch-arounds. First-time attendees are encouraged to visit the new attendee orientation breakfast on Friday morning to find out more about all that the Annual Meeting has to offer.

 

There are also some social events to highlight. First and foremost, we will celebrate the 15th Anniversary of the NPA Annual Meeting, featuring an anniversary cake with Food Network celebrity pastry chef Tim Nugent. The local host of the 2017 Annual Meeting will organize dine-arounds for attendees to try out local restaurants. Last but not least, there are two extra social event options for meeting attendees, the Night Life Event at California Academy of Sciences on Thursday night and Beach Blanket Babylon Musical on Friday night after the NPA opening reception and raffle (cost to attend these two events are not covered by NPA).

 

We are still welcoming prizes and donations for the Annual Meeting raffle and auction, which will help to fund travel awards for the 2018 Annual Meeting. This would not be possible without the generous support from our sponsors. Please contact us if you are interested in making a donation.

 

We look forward to seeing you in San Francisco in March!

 

Jenny Lamberts, PhD, and Tiewei (Leo) Cheng, MD, PhD, are co-chairs of the NPA Meetings Committee. Lamberts is an assistant professor in the College of Pharmacy at Ferris State University. Cheng is a postdoctoral scholar at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.

 

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