Career Paths



The new job, the interview process

In my previous entry, I mentioned that over the last few months I had a lot of changes coming at me, almost all at once. I promised to talk more about the interview process, and how I went from being a staff scientist to, all of a sudden, becoming a full-fledged lab manager. I hope this will be of i...



The Amount of Writing it Takes to Become a Writer

“I earned my PhD in drug discovery in 2011, and now I work as a curriculum writer.”  When I introduce myself this way, especially to other trainees who are interested in transitioning away from the bench, I always get asked, “How did you do that?”  I usually say that I wrote a lot,...



The Relevance of Graduate Education

Do you think that the majority of graduate education programs today are providing relevant education and training to their students in relation to the jobs that graduates are actually obtaining? 



Alternative Careers for Science PhDs: Part III – Science Policy

Postdocs have few years to identify career goals, strengthen CVs, and construct a professional network, all while working full time in the lab. Given the current situation in academia, most of us will end up in what used to be considered alternative careers. There is a long list of non-academic care...



Planning a career transition

Physician career transitioning is a growth industry. Generational work-life attitudes, practice hassles, government regulations and just the meteoric pace of healthcare change are forcing practitioners to reassess their commitment to clinical medicine. A lot of them are plotting a plan B. As a resul...



How to Stay on Top?

You got into science because you are passionate about understanding how things work or maybe because the white lab coat is totally your style. And so you went to grad school, chose a lab and started working on your super-exciting-this-is-going-to-be-a-Cell-paper project. Then, you get sucked in with...



What do you do in Strategic Marketing? Or where is the dart board?

If industry is the dark side of science, strategic marketing is the dark side of industry, or so it seems.  As scientists sitting in teams with our strategic marketing colleagues, we always wondered how they came up with those projections of how much revenue a drug would have in 2025 (yes, they...



A Round About Way to Academia

My new life begins tomorrow. Except, tomorrow isn’t tomorrow; it is more fittingly next week, next month, next semester, or next year. Regardless of when it comes, though, what I believe happens tomorrow is always the same: “tomorrow I begin the career that fulfills me in every way.” 

Bio Careers


Join me on my blogging adventure as I embark on my career journey!

Hello! My name is Heather, and I am currently a postdoctoral fellow. As I was thinking about beginning this blog, one question kept popping into my head “What makes me qualified to give career advice?” And what I realized is that I am not any different from the scientist sitting next to you. ...



Becoming An Expert In Things I Enjoy

As a graduate student, I worked really hard to do the things that graduate students are supposed to do. I went to the seminars. I read the journal club papers. I did well in my classes. And I will admit that I was often pretty jealous of other people who weren’t so regimented about those things, b...