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[NEWS] How to find a postdoc position that’s right for you


from April 20, 2020 to May 30, 2020

By Leah H. Somerville, Jay J. Van Bavel , William A. Cunningham, Neil A. Lewis, Jr. (Science Mag)

How to find a postdoc position that’s right for you

Postdocs make up a crucial component of the scientific workforce. But the application process can be mysterious. In many fields, there is no central bank of job advertisements for postdocs, unlike what is typically the case for faculty positions. And there is no typical “season” when postdoc applications are due, unlike graduate programs. In this column, we try to demystify the application process for prospective postdocs.

Thinking through your options

Those of us who did postdocs have fond memories of our postdoc years. Looking back now, we appreciate it as a time when we had the freedom to devote most of our workdays to research. Our postdoc years also afforded us an opportunity to develop new skills, try new research areas, and forge new professional connections. But the reality is that postdoc positions aren’t for everyone. Too many Ph.D. students treat a postdoc as the default next step in their career path, without fully thinking through their goals. So before committing to a postdoc, we recommend taking time to do some soul-searching and reflecting on whether a postdoc is necessary for accomplishing your long-term goals. (For more discussion on this topic, see these stories.) [Read more]

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