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NPA Names Davis, Jurado as 2022 Winners of Distinguished Awards

CHICAGO, Ill. -- During its historic twentieth annual conference, the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) today announced that Geoff Davis, Ph.D., and Kellie Ann Jurado, Ph.D., are the 2022 winners of the organization's two most prestigious awards in the postdoctoral scholar community.

The NPA Distinguished Service Award recognizes the highest appreciation for an individual that has demonstrated a profound, sustained, or leadership contribution to improving the postdoctoral experience. Today, that honor was bestowed on Dr. Geoff Davis, one of the earliest advocates for the NPA.

"It is inspiring to see how much the NPA has accomplished for postdocs," commented Davis. "I am honored to be recognized for the work we did together." Davis is a Staff Data Scientist in the Applied Science group at Google Research, having previously served as a postdoc and later an assistant professor of mathematics at Dartmouth College.

The NPA Gallagher Mentor Award recognizes the very best of mentors across the nation who advocate for postdoctoral scholars, celebrate diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) values, and empower their postdoc scholars to succeed. The NPA is dedicated to both recognizing champions and serving as a model for greater DEI in the postdoctoral community.

Dr. Kellie Ann Jurado was named the 2022 Gallagher Mentor of the Year today in Chicago to a field of applauding researchers. Jurado, a Presidential Assistant Professor in the microbiology department at University of Pennsylvania, completed her postdoctoral training at Yale University and earned her Ph.D. at Harvard University.

"I am just so honored," said Jurado. "The absolute best part of this position is to be able to learn and deliberate with my team. They are the light- I am just grateful that I get to help them shine."

"Drs. Davis and Jurado are exemplars in their field," stated NPA Board chair Stephanie Eberle, M.Ed., who announced today's highly-coveted and respected awards. "Beyond academic contributions, they role model commitment to the holistic development of postdoctoral scholars and the advancement of a culture of belonging in training and beyond. These, our highest NPA awards, honor such dedication."

Individuals and organizations can continue the celebration of Drs. Davis and Jurado by following their work while also seeking opportunities to collaborate with the NPA, which is committed to a course of work that advances the careers of our nation's brightest and most educated scholars.

Learn more: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/page/2022AC

About the National Postdoctoral Association:

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) charitable and educational association headquartered in Rockville, MD. Founded in 2003, the NPA envisions an inclusive community where all postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their current and future endeavors. The NPA serves the entire postdoctoral community, including its 22,000 individual and 230 organizational members. Learn more: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/

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2022 Mentor of the Year Finalists Announced: Four academic leaders nominated for strong commitment to mentorship

ROCKVILLE, Md. -- The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA), in partnership with Gallagher, today announced during National Mentoring Month the finalists for the 2022 NPA Gallagher Mentor Award. The award recognizes a faculty member or advisor who engages in exceptional mentoring of postdoctoral scholars.

The prestigious award recognizes those who advocate for postdoctoral scholars; exhibit outstanding communication skills; embed diversity, equity and inclusion values in mentoring; demonstrate respect for the work and career paths of postdoctoral scholars; create productive working environments to enhance the postdoctoral experience; and show resilience and creativity as mentors during the pandemic.

"Recognition as a mentor is without a doubt the highest achievement one can receive, because it represents one's positive impact on those that will help shape the future," said Ed Krug, Ph.D., former recipient of the NPA Gallagher Mentor Award and professor emeritus at the Medical University of South Carolina.

The 2022 finalists for the NPA Gallagher Mentor Award are:

* Kellie Ann Jurado, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, Perelman School of Medicine

* Kalmia E. Kniel, Ph.D., University of Delaware

* Eben Kenah, Ph.D. & Grzegorz A. Rempala, Ph.D., The Ohio State University

"The NPA recognizes the accomplishments of all four of these impressive individuals and their unfailing commitment to mentorship for postdocs," stated NPA executive director and chief executive officer, Thomas P. Kimbis. "Each of these finalists is already a winner for how they give back to others every day and is a model for others to follow."

The winner of this year's award will be announced at the 2022 NPA Annual Conference, taking place live for the first time in three years in Chicago at the Palmer House Hilton on April 1-2, 2022 and through a virtual event April 28-29, 2022. Registration remains open for this event and is accessible to anyone around the world. Early bird registration ends on January 28, 2022.

About National Postdoctoral Association:

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) educational association headquartered in Rockville, MD. Founded in 2003, the NPA envisions an inclusive community where all postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their current and future endeavors. The NPA serves the entire postdoctoral community, including its more than 21,000 individual and 230 organizational members.

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NPA Announces Six Scholars Selected for IMPACT Fellowship Program

ROCKVILLE, Md. -- The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) today announced the six finalists in the inaugural class of its IMPACT Fellowship Program, an esteemed initiative designed to empower postdoctoral scholars from underrepresented backgrounds to build skills, understand strengths and develop networks. Competition for program seats was intense with more than seventy applicants from across the globe for six positions.

"We are thrilled at the tremendous enthusiasm for learning and potential for leadership in the Fellows of our incoming class," said Stephanie Eberle, M.Ed., chair of the NPA. "Fellows will gain mentors from outside their current discipline, greater self-awareness to identify key strengths, and newfound confidence heading into the next steps of their careers."

IMPACT Fellows will engage in a six-month, interactive fellowship that uses a variety of tools to empower participants to strategically build upon existing skills, recognize opportunities, and advance more confidently in their careers. Fellows are expected not only to benefit from their own growth but also to use the knowledge, tools and resources they gain from the program to implement activities or initiatives at their institutions and to contribute back to their communities.

"An exciting aspect of the IMPACT program is that Fellows from across institutions will be able to build a strong cohort of peers, and learn from each others' experiences and unique perspectives," stated Caleb McKinney, Ph.D., MPS, treasurer of the NPA and board liaison for diversity affairs.

The inaugural Fellowship class will engage in a peer mentoring program, a dedicated speaker series featuring luminaries from a range of disciplines, and ultimately a live educational and networking event at the NPA Annual Conference in Chicago, Illinois, in April 2022.

The NPA is proud to present the IMPACT Fellows for 2021-22:

* Brienna Anderson-Coughlin, Ph.D., University of Delaware

* Kimiko Krieger, Ph.D., Baylor College of Medicine

* Tanya Paes, Ph.D., Purdue University

* Raul Rodriguez, Ph.D., University of California - Berkeley

* Anaïs Tallon, Ph.D., Virginia Tech

* Z Yan Wang, Ph.D., Princeton University

The IMPACT Fellowship is made possible through its institutional sponsors, Gallagher Insurance, the University of Illinois Chicago (UIC), and Columbia University's Zuckerman Institute, as well as the contributions of individual donors.

Additional sponsorship opportunities remain available at https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/mpage/IMPACT.

The NPA is a national charitable and educational non-profit association headquartered in Rockville, Maryland, that seeks to improve the postdoctoral experience by supporting a culture of inclusive connection. At the individual, organizational, and national levels, the NPA facilitates enhanced professional growth, raises awareness, and collaborates with stakeholders in the postdoctoral community. Membership in the NPA is open to all organizations and individuals interested in advancing the interests of postdocs in the United States. Affiliate membership in the NPA for most postdocs is free and available at https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/.

To support NPA and its charitable mission, please visit https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/page/donate or text 20FORNPA to 44-321.

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NPA Launches IMPACT Fellowship Program

ROCKVILLE, Md. -- The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) today announced a fellowship program designed to help researchers from marginalized communities advance their careers. Using tools to improve skills, better understand strengths, provide exposure to new fields, and develop new networks, the IMPACT Fellowship Program is a groundbreaking effort assisting postdoctoral scholars of all disciplines.

There are approximately 70,000 postdoctoral scholars across the United States who conduct the bulk of the nation's early-stage research. In addition to their important work within their fields, ranging from economics to life sciences, these scholars serve as mentors and instructors for graduate students while preparing to enter the full-time workforce in leadership positions. As members of minority racial, ethnic, gender, geographic, and other communities, some postdoctoral scholars face high barriers to career and personal success others do not.

"Unfortunately, all postdoctoral scholars do not share equal access to critical resources, especially those from marginalized communities or from historically underfunded institutions," said NPA executive director and chief executive officer, Thomas P. Kimbis. "A year after the height of protests in the wake of the death of George Floyd and just before the celebration of Juneteenth, we are proud to announce this intentional step in the right direction."

"As the national association of postdoctoral scholars, we are very aware of this inequity within our own membership," commented NPA Board chair, Stephanie Eberle. "By taking a hands-on, peer-driven approach, IMPACT provides new tools to help program fellows succeed while encouraging them to bring lessons learned back to their communities."

IMPACT is set to run its first program of fellows for six months starting this summer, to be followed by another class in 2022. IMPACT program graduates will comprise a growing and supportive community to scholars looking to strategically build upon existing skills, recognize opportunities, and advance in their careers.​ The program will also feature engagement with leaders from areas such as business, communications, finance, and policy that are outside the fellows' disciplines, providing them new career insights and connections.

NPA diversity officer, Matthew Aguirre, noted "The IMPACT fellowship program has taken a team of leaders to establish, and we cannot express our excitement to be a part of it. This will be the program's pilot year, but will only grow to serve the postdoctoral community, specifically those from marginalized and under-resourced communities."

"Leadership and inclusion skill sets are increasingly recognized as essential competencies for postdoctoral scholars," added Vipul Sharma, who serves as a diversity officer alongside Aguirre. "IMPACT is a small step on a national scale to initiate an equitable and inclusive culture in research."

The NPA is currently seeking applicants for fellows as well as corporate, individual, and philanthropic sponsors of the first class of this multi-year, signature program.

Applicants for fellows: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/page/IMPACTProgram

Sponsors information: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/mpage/IMPACT

About National Postdoctoral Association:

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) educational association headquartered in Rockville, MD. Founded in 2003, the NPA envisions an inclusive community where all postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their current and future endeavors. The NPA serves the entire postdoctoral community, including its 19,000 individual and 215 organizational members.

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New Study Shows Positive Trends and Continued Challenges for University Postdocs

ROCKVILLE, Md. -- The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) today announced the release of Growing Progress in Supporting Postdocs: 2021 National Postdoctoral Association Institutional Policy Report.

Developed in collaboration with Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Honor Society, and with support from the Burroughs Wellcome Fund, the report provides data and analysis of current postdoc office structures as well as insights into postdoc policies and programs at their institutions. The report is the third in a series of triennial reports on this topic.

The report analyzes the impact of how certain important and measurable factors, such as the number of postdocs at an institution, affect postdoc policies, benefits, and training programs. The latest data show positive trends when compared to the last edition, such as the continued creation of new postdoc offices at research facilities, a small increase in postdoc office budgets, and a few more institutions offering family friendly benefits to postdocs, to name a few.

"We are headed in the right direction in many areas of the postdoctoral experience," noted Tom Kimbis, executive director and chief executive officer of the NPA. "However, there are clear areas demanding improvement illustrated in this report that should be considered by all institutions supporting postdocs."

The report's key recommendations to institutions that hire postdocs are to increase the staff and budget for postdoc offices, provide higher compensation and equality in postdoc benefits, implement a uniform postdoc onboarding process, offer an intentional training program, build a diverse postdoc population, and implement better career tracking of postdocs after they leave their training institutions.

The report is part of an ongoing data collection project that began in 2012. This is the first look at longitudinal data covering a span of six years and originating with the last three NPA Institutional Policy Reports, and includes identification of areas of strength and weakness in institutional progress over that time. The institutions covered in this year's iteration represent 36,000 of the country's approximately 70,000 postdocs. Work is underway to begin the next round of data collection starting in 2022.

Growing Progress in Supporting Postdocs is being released as a supplement to the May-June 2021 issue of Sigma Xi's publication, American Scientist, and is also available online at the Sigma Xi and NPA websites. Fuller data from the expansive report is also available to NPA members only on the NPA website.

Learn mote: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/page/policy_report_databa

About National Postdoctoral Association:

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) educational association headquartered in Rockville, MD. Founded in 2003, the NPA envisions an inclusive community where all postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their current and future endeavors. The NPA serves the entire postdoctoral community, including its 18,000 individual and 215 organizational members.

Related link: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/

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NPA Announces Chalasani, Tetzlaff Win Awards of Highest Distinction

ROCKVILLE, Md. -- The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) today announced that Sreekanth Chalasani, Ph.D. and Julie Tetzlaff, Ph.D. are the 2021 winners of the organization's two most prestigious awards for exceptional service to the postdoctoral scholar community.

Chalasani, associate professor at the Molecular Neurobiology Laboratory at the Salk Institute, was announced as the winner of the 2021 NPA Gallagher Mentor Award among an exceptional field of finalists. Tetzlaff, associate professor at the Medical College of Wisconsin, was recognized by peers across the nation as the winner of the 2021 NPA Distinguished Service Award.

The NPA Gallagher Mentor Award recognizes the very best of mentors across the nation who advocate for postdoctoral scholars, celebrate diversity, equity and inclusion values and empower their postdoc scholars to succeed.

"A great expert is a person who has made all the mistakes," explained John Beacom, Ph.D., winner of the Mentor Award last year. "A great mentor is a person who will share those mistakes so others can avoid them."

"I am deeply honored to be selected as the NPA Gallagher Mentor of the Year from the National Postdoc Association," said Chalasani. "I would like to thank my current and former postdocs, all of whom have helped me become a better mentor. I also congratulate all of the award finalists for their fantastic work supporting postdocs."

The NPA Distinguished Service Award recognizes the highest appreciation for an individual that has demonstrated a profound, sustained, or leadership contribution to improving the postdoctoral experience. "The postdoctoral community is fortunate to have the NPA advocating on their behalf to improve the postdoctoral experience," commented Tetzlaff. "I thank them for giving me this award and bringing even more positive visibility to postdocs everywhere."

"Drs. Chalasani and Tetzlaff are receiving the highest honors that the NPA awards," stated NPA Board chair Stephanie Eberle, M.Ed. "In their own exceptional ways, they have excelled at creating agency and opportunity for postdoctoral scholars to succeed and advance in their work and careers."

The two awards were presented at the 2021 NPA Annual Conference before a record audience of postdoctoral scholars, faculty members, industry leaders and academic administrators.

Learn more: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/page/2021AC

About National Postdoctoral Association:

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) educational association headquartered in Rockville, MD. Founded in 2003, the NPA envisions an inclusive community where all postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their current and future endeavors. The NPA serves the entire postdoctoral community, including its 18,000 individual and 215 organizational members.

Related link: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/

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National Postdoctoral Association Unveils New Strategic Plan

ROCKVILLE, Md. -- Today, the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) released a strategic plan for the coming three years to move closer towards its vision of "an inclusive community where all postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their current and future endeavors."

The 2021-2024 plan features a dozen strategies oriented around four pillars of NPA activity -- advocacy; diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI); member development; and operational excellence. The pillars and strategies were developed through an inclusive, eight-month process that included surveys of postdocs and university offices, consultation with external stakeholders, and use of best practices.

"The pillars of this strategic plan represent the next logical steps in our growth," said Stephanie Eberle, M.Ed., NPA Board Chair, "diversifying our research community, advocating for equity and opportunities within it, and maintaining the intentional, dependable service this important community deserves."

Since 2003, the NPA has been dedicated to improve the postdoctoral experience by supporting a culture of inclusive connection. This new member-driven plan is designed to bring even greater focus to the NPA's efforts by honing in on areas of greatest value and importance to postdocs and the institutions that support them.

The release coincides with the NPA's 19th Annual Conference, also occurring this week, and which has itself shattered attendance records and positioned the organization to jumpstart work under the new plan. The 18,000 member association hopes to further engage with its members, partners, allies and other stakeholders as it builds out specific initiatives and activities to implement its new strategies.

"We are committed to excellence in helping our members succeed -- from developing career pathways to building more inclusive communities -- and to creating novel and collaborative ways of enabling such success," commented Thomas P. Kimbis, J.D., NPA executive director and CEO. "We encourage stakeholders to connect with us to create win-win scenarios under our new plan."

About National Postdoctoral Association:

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) educational association headquartered in Rockville, MD. Founded in 2003, the NPA envisions an inclusive community where all postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their current and future endeavors. The NPA serves the entire postdoctoral community, including its 18,000 individual and 215 organizational members.

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2021 Mentor of the Year Finalists Announced – Eight outstanding leaders nominated from across the U.S.

ROCKVILLE, Md. -- The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA), in partnership with Gallagher, today announced the finalists for the 2021 NPA Gallagher Mentor Award. The award recognizes a faculty member or advisor who engages in exceptional mentoring of postdoctoral scholars.

The prestigious award recognizes those who advocate for postdoctoral scholars; exhibit outstanding communication skills; embed diversity, equity and inclusion values in mentoring; demonstrate respect for the work and career paths of postdoctoral scholars; create productive working environments to enhance the postdoctoral experience; and show resilience and creativity as mentors during the pandemic.

"Recognition as a mentor is without a doubt the highest achievement one can receive, because it represents one's positive impact on those that will help shape the future," said Ed Krug, Ph.D., former recipient of the NPA Gallagher Mentor Award and professor emeritus at the Medical University of South Carolina.

The 2021 finalists for the NPA Gallagher Mentor Award are:

* Sreekanth Chalasani, Ph.D., Salk Institute for Biological Studies

* Cory Christiansen, Ph.D., University of Colorado School of Medicine

* Christina Cipriano, Ph.D., Yale School of Medicine

* John D. Fryer, Ph.D., Mayo Clinic

* Kentaro Fujita, Ph.D., Ohio State University

* David J. Katz, Ph.D., Emory University School of Medicine

* Stephanie Madon, Ph.D., Iowa State University

* Ethan Menahem Shevach, M.D., National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

"The NPA recognizes the accomplishments of all eight of these impressive individuals and their unfailing commitment to mentorship for postdoctoral scholars," stated NPA executive director and chief executive officer, Thomas P. Kimbis. "Each of these finalists is already a winner for how they give to others every day."

The winner of this year's award will be announced at the 2021 NPA Annual Conference, taking place online April 15-16, 2021. Registration remains open for this event accessible around the world.

About National Postdoctoral Association:

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) educational association headquartered in Rockville, MD. Founded in 2003, the NPA envisions an inclusive community where all postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their current and future endeavors. The NPA serves the entire postdoctoral community, including its 18,000 individual and 215 organizational members.

Learn more at: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/

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19th Annual Postdoc Event Targets Career Successes

ROCKVILLE, Md. -- The 19th National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) Annual Conference is set for April 15-16, 2021 and will include educational, career advancement and networking opportunities benefiting postdoctoral scholars ("postdocs") and their host institutions around the world. More than fifty experts will dive into themes of top importance to the greater postdoc community.

The conference is an annual highlight for the 70,000 postdocs who comprise the heart of early-stage American research and innovation as well as for representatives of 215 member NPA universities, research institutions and industry that host postdocs.

Taking place for the first time on a virtual platform, the conference will feature two keynote addresses focused on aspects of the most important postdoc concern today: career pathways and possibilities. Chris Gunter, Ph.D., senior advisor for genomics engagement at the National Human Genome Research Institute at the National Institutes of Health and Cristina Rabadán-Diehl, Ph.D., former director of the Office of the Americas at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, will share their wisdom, expertise, and lessons learned.

"Postdocs and postdoc offices spoke and we listened," remarked Stephanie Eberle, M.Ed., NPA Board chair. "Career trajectories are top of mind for many postdocs and their advisors in this era of great uncertainty. Our conference will help answer the call."

Using a creative array of interactive sessions, speed talks, networking breakout groups, and social engagement tools, attendees will interact extensively. Experts from dozens of institutions will address critical issues of diversity, equity, and inclusion; excellence in mentoring; mental health and wellness, especially during the pandemic; and best practices in postdoc program management. A career "fireside chat," featuring Christopher Rhodes, Ph.D., of AstraZeneca and Latishya Steele, Ph.D., of Stanford University, will further delve into career trends and options in the increasingly intertwined areas of academia and industry.

"The NPA is thrilled to welcome first-time attendees from across the nation and around the globe using our virtual platform," commented Thomas P. Kimbis, NPA executive director and CEO. "It will be both a social, networking and learning experience you won't want to miss."

For more information about the 2021 NPA Annual Conference, including registration and sponsorship information, visit https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/page/2021AC.

About National Postdoctoral Association:

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) is a nonprofit, 501(c)(3) educational association headquartered in Rockville, MD. Founded in 2003, the NPA envisions an inclusive community where all postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their current and future endeavors. The NPA serves the entire postdoctoral community, including its 18,000 individual and 215 organizational members. Learn more: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/.

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National Postdoctoral Association Applauds Pay Increases for Postdocs

ROCKVILLE, Md. -- As advocates for a rewarding postdoctoral experience, the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) applauds the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for increasing the Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) stipends for fiscal year 2021. A bellwether for research institutions across the country, NRSA pay levels are a critical factor in setting salaries for postdoctoral scholars - postdocs - of all disciplines.

"We can empower and educate the entire postdoctoral community by integrating meaningful work with healthy personal lives," commented Thomas P. Kimbis, NPA executive director and CEO. "A reasonable salary is a necessary part of any well-integrated postdoc experience."

Postdocs are the heart of early-stage research across America. Having completed their doctoral or terminal degrees in their fields, roughly 70,000 postdocs across all fifty states tackle tough issues in all disciplines from the biological and social sciences to engineering, leading cutting-edge research efforts at universities, institutes and within industry.

Often the unsung heroes in American research, thousands of postdocs have worked tirelessly during the COVID-19 pandemic to improve outcomes in the fight against the virus, from developing vaccines to understanding the impact of the pandemic on schools and communities. Postdocs not only serve as leaders of research projects, but also as important mentors and respected role models for graduate students, keeping the American innovation pipeline flowing.

"During this unprecedented time in our nation's history, the dedication and acumen of the hidden postdoctoral workforce is imperative, which makes this intentional expression of appreciation ever more important," remarked Stephanie K. Eberle, M.Ed., NPA board chair.

The NPA is heartened by the NIH's track record of increases in NRSA stipends and encourages the NIH to continue to provide annual adjustments to ensure that postdocs are empowered, valued, recognized, and supported in their lives and work as they well deserve.

About National Postdoctoral Association:

The NPA is a charitable and educational non-profit association headquartered in Rockville, Maryland, that seeks to improve the postdoctoral experience by supporting a culture of enhanced professional growth. At the individual, organizational, and national levels, the NPA facilitates connections, raises awareness, and collaborates with stakeholders in the postdoctoral community. Membership in the NPA is open to all organizations and individuals interested in advancing the interests of postdocs in the U.S.

Learn more about postdocs and how they drive American innovation by attending via virtual platform the NPA's 19th Annual Conference on Apr. 15-16, 2021.

For more information, visit: https://www.nationalpostdoc.org/

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