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The POSTDOCket is the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) newsletter covering news items and features of interest to the postdoctoral community.


The NPA welcomes member submissions for inclusion in The POSTDOCket. Please contact the POSTDOCket editor in chief, to share your story ideas. Interested in advertising with the NPA?


In This Issue



Volume 15, Issue 9 (September 2017)

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Update from the Chair: Celebrating National Postdoc Appreciation Week

Kate Sleeth


National Postdoc Appreciation Week (NPAW) is an excellent time to celebrate postdocs and their contributions to research. It’s also important for institutions to recognize the stress postdocs are under and promote mental health wellness in the community.

Postdoc Support and Inclusive Hiring Practices Provide a Two-Pronged Strategy for Increasing Faculty Diversity

J. Marcela Hernandez


The Professional Advancement Initiative set out to double the hiring rate of underrepresented minority faculty in STEM fields. The Big Ten Academic Alliance has tackled two fronts simultaneously and, for three years running, achieved that goal.

Evolving Training and Professional Development through STEM Education Research: Q&A with Catherine Hueston

Aarushi Sharma


Catherine Hueston, a postdoctoral fellow in STEM education research, offers advice for individuals interested in the field and highlights career opportunities available to STEM education research fellows.

New Report Highlights Challenges Faced by Postdoc Parents

Rewatee Gokhale


A nationwide survey of postdoctoral scholars highlights the challenges faced by postdoc parents, including informal arrangements and discrimination for taking parental leave.

Unlock the Story in Your Science

Lining Zhu


Learning to effectively communicate your research may help build public trust. This article offers some tips for approaching your audience and finding opportunities to practice and share your science.

NPA News and Committee Corner


Read about new developments and ongoing efforts by the NPA committees, as well as ways you can get involved. 

Thank you to new and renewing Sustaining Members of the NPA!


Sustaining Members are a vital part of the NPA. Sustaining Members represent a range of professional societies, postdoc associations, postdoc offices, and other organizations that serve the postdoctoral community. Students, postdocs, faculty, and staff at NPA Sustaining Member institutions are eligible to join the NPA, at no cost, as Affiliate Members. Check to see if your institution is an NPA Sustaining Member.



Welcome to the NPA!

Merck Research Laboratories



Thank you for your continued support!

California Institute of Technology

The Jackson Laboratory 

Cedars-Sinai Medical Center

University of California, Berkeley

Center for Infectious Disease Research

University of Michigan 
Duke University University of North Carolina Charlotte
Kansas State University University of South Florida 
Rice University Weill Cornell Medical College
Seattle Children's Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution 


Past issues (2017- )

Access The POSTDOCket archive (Restricted to members)

Melissa Vaught, Ph.D.

Editor in Chief

Vaught received her doctorate degree in chemistry from Vanderbilt University in 2008. She continued biochemistry and cell biology research as a postdoctoral fellow at the Immune Disease Institute/Harvard Medical School (2009-2010), and Massachusetts General Hospital (2010-2014). Vaught is a scientific editor at PubMed Commons, contracted to the National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) by Medical Science & Computing LLC. In her personal time, she blogs and tweets about the culture of science and her experiences in academia and beyond.

Vaught's involvement with The POSTDOCket and the NPA are personal, and do not represent any endorsement by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or National Institutes of Health.


Associate editors include: Viviane Callier, Ph.D., Kristy Hentchel, Ph.D., Stephani Page, Ph.D., Andrew Pike, Ph.D., Ian Street, Ph.D., Irina Tiper, Ph.D., and Elaine Wells-Gray, Ph.D.

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