Baskin Engineering celebrates outstanding postdocs during National Postdoc Appreciation Week

Date
National Postdoc Appreciation Week at UCSC
By: Melissa Weckerle

Join the Baskin School of Engineering Sept. 20–24 as we celebrate National Postdoc Appreciation Week, an annual event established in 2009 by the National Postdoctoral Association “to recognize the significant contributions that postdoctoral scholars make to U.S. research and discovery.”

Postdocs are recent Ph.D. graduates hired by universities to conduct original research under the supervision of a faculty mentor. Most postdocs spend one to three years in their roles, though the length of each appointment can vary depending on the projects a postdoc works on, the needs of the lab they join, and funding availability. As a postdoc, an early career researcher can make significant contributions to their field while also preparing for a permanent position in academia or industry.

But postdocs are more than just researchers. They often help manage the labs they’ve joined, train undergraduate and graduate student researchers, provide academic and career mentorship to students and fellow postdocs, and secure funding for themselves and their labs.

At Baskin Engineering, our 34 postdocs come from a variety of backgrounds and academic disciplines. They bring innovative perspectives and technical expertise to UC Santa Cruz, where they make major contributions to many of the university’s top research initiatives and help train the next generation of scientists and engineers.

“Postdocs often bring new perspectives and new insights into the research they’re doing with the knowledge and tools they learned before they arrived at UCSC. In that sense, they vastly broaden our intellectual portfolio,” said Pascale Garaud, professor of applied mathematics.

To raise awareness of the many valuable contributions our postdocs have made to Baskin Engineering and UC Santa Cruz, we’re spotlighting five postdocs during National Postdoc Appreciation Week. Make sure to tune into the Baskin Engineering news site and the Voices of Baskin Engineering website next week to learn more about how each of these outstanding postdoctoral scholars is making an impact.

In addition, please consider supporting the UCSC STEAM Postdoc Association (USPA). Many UCSC postdocs are members of the USPA, which was founded in 2015 by UCSC postdocs to provide training and support for postdocs. Throughout the year, the association holds events to assist postdocs with career development, networking, and showcasing their research to the broader research community. USPA is entirely postdoc-led and relies on external support to continue offering resources. If you’d like to donate or are interested in becoming a partner, please visit the USPA website.