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National Postdoc Appreciation Week


A National Celebration. No questions about it - the pandemic has changed the world. We learned that flexibility is a must, innovation is a critical skill, and that we still are driven by a desire to connect. In this spirit we are celebrating the 12th annual National Postdoc Appreciation Week (NPAW)September 20 - 24, with an NPA member-driven, multi-institutional virtual collaboration again thanks to the success of this initiative in 2020.

 “I am a Postdoc.” The NPAW Steering Committee, led by the NPA and dedicated volunteers from NPA member institutions, is planning three national events around the theme, “I am a Postdoc.” This effort is intended to give definition to the role of the postdoc “at the bench and beyond,” uniting postdocs and recognizing their successes.

Join us to start NPAW together and kick off this year’s theme of “I Am A Postdoc.” The opening session will highlight the diverse identities of postdocs, the substantial contributions to society, the virtues you uphold as researchers that continue into your careers, while providing practical career planning
Date & Time: Monday, September 20, 10:00 - 11:00 a.m. PT
Register HERE

Looking for tips to find and secure a job you will enjoy and thrive in after your postdoc? Want to learn about careers where you can apply the skills and knowledge gained through your postdoc training? Then join us to meet former postdocs who have found success in their chosen professions and learn about their career journeys!
Date & Time: Tuesday, September 21, 11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. PT
Register HERE

In this workshop, postdocs will reflect on the identities that are important, or salient, to their career planning and connect those to career pathways or areas for professional development. Participants will also develop goals towards their next career step in breakout groups with peers, identifying key action steps they would like to take this fall toward landing a position after their postdoctoral appointment ends.
Date & Time: Wednesday, September 22, 10:00 - 11:30 a.m. PT
Register HERE

  • Be a PI (Postdoc Investigator): A Social Scavenger Hunt
Test your PI (Postdoc Investigator) skills by seeing how many items you can complete or find during National Postdoc Appreciation Week! Please create/use your twitter account as you participate in NPAW events, meet new people, and try exciting things. Use #NPAW2021BeAPI to tag @nationalpostdoc and create a thread for the tasks given below. If you complete all the tasks by 3 pm PT on Thursday, September 23, you’ll be entered into a drawing for a fabulous prize (discounted or free registration for the NPA-2022 meeting)! There are some NPA swag prizes for the runner ups too. Winners will be announced by 9 am PT on Friday, September 24.
Tasks for the scavenger hunt:
1. Let us know what you’re enjoying about NPAW
2. Attend at least two NPAW events(screenshots)
3. Attend the networking event on September 21st
4. Get a picture of yourself meeting a new friend
5. Show your appreciation for another postdoc(s)
6. Summarize your research in less than 10 words
7. Share a picture of your workspace
8. Share a glimpse of the life you enjoy outside of your lab/work
Scavenger Hunt Dates: from Monday, September 20, 6 a.m. PT through Thursday, September 23, 3 p.m. PT


“What’s a postdoc?” You probably hear that question on far too regular a basis. The NPA needs your help in its efforts to increase understanding of the often unrecognized and misunderstood role of postdocs. We can’t do this alone. Here’s how you can help. We need current and former postdocs to submit short (1 min or less) videos to be used as part of NPAW and beyond to emphasize the diversity of work and interests of postdocs in the United States and the many careers they pursue post-postdoc. Spread this message to your peers and friends who are current or former postdocs as well. This request continues on the theme of “I am a Postdoc” that Postdoc Academy started in 2019. For examples of videos that can be submitted please refer to this compilation video and one from Twitter.

Use this form to begin the process of submitting a video.


UCSD Postdoctoral Association Events

Postdoc Appreciation Art/Hobby Challenge

Enjoy a hobby outside your postdoc? For this year’s postdoc appreciation week, the PDA Wellness and Sustainability committee brings you an Art/Hobby Challenge to appreciate creative work outside postdoc-ing. Starting TODAY and until September 20 you can register and showcase your art (photography, dance, craft, baked good... You name it!!)

Register by sending your name and position to Email us your art piece or hobby (photo/link) with a brief description of what it means to you. Find an example here.

We will post your projects and hobbies online on our social media where people can view and vote. Post yours online during the challenge using the #PDAenjoyinglife. The 3 most popular/voted art (photography, ceramic, performance, craft project, etc...) will win one of 3 prizes.

Voting will take place during PDA appreciation week! We will send a poll to all participants and postdoc listserve to share and spread the vote. The winners will be announced at the end of the Kelee Meditation Workshop during the PDA appreciation week (September 24, 2:30 PM).

Email pdawellsustained@gmail.comwith registration info and art/hobby by Monday, September 20!

Postdoc Appreciation Note

Show your appreciation for a postdoc in your life! Share a message of thanks and a photo to be displayed on the Postdoctoral Association's Website during Postdoc Appreciation Week (September 20 - 24). Nominated postdocs will be entered into a raffle for $100 in Professional Development Credit!

Submit your note HERE by Tuesday, September 21!

Postdoc Appreciation Virtual 5K

Let’s get moving to appreciate postdocs and their hard work with a Virtual 5k! Starting TODAY and until Thursday the 23th during PDA appreciation week run, walk or stroll.

Register yourself and/or your team to participate at Send your full name/s and position/s. Graduate students, RA, PIs, and family members are welcome to participate! Track your run and time an unlimited number of times, and send photos of the run and results.

By participating in this virtual 5K you enter the poll to draw 3 winners of fun prizes! If you are not a postdoc, choose your favorite postdoc to give them your prize in appreciation of their work.

The final leaderboard count will take place by the end of Sep 23th. The winners will be announced at the end of the Kelee Meditation Workshop during the PDA appreciation week(September 24, 2:30 PM).

Email pdawellsustained@gmail.comwith registration info and photos and time of your run by Thursday, September 23!


Local Events. The NPA is collecting and will share information about local NPAW events that are virtual and are open to postdocs from other institutions and will share a link to the event calendar early in September.

Lastly, don’t forget to keep your NPA membership updated.  UCSD postdocs can register for a free NPA affiliate membership HERE.

For any questions or comments, please feel free to contact members of the NPAW Steering Committee.

NPAW Steering Committee

Misty Treanor & Kryste Ferguson, Steering Committee co-chairs

Dolon Chakraborty & Chris Smith, Main Event/Video Collection co-chairs

Karyn Lawrence & Amy Wilson, Marketing co-chairs

Heather Dillon, Social/Networking Event chair

Paola Cepeda, Event Collection and Curation chair