National Institutes of Health Career Symposium- Amara Greer-Short

Name: Amara Greer-Short

Role: Doctoral Student

Program: Biomedical Engineering

Meeting: 2015 National Institutes of Health Career Symposium

I was able to attend the 2015 NIH Career Symposium this past May thanks to the BEST program.  The symposium provided a number of presentations on a variety of science-related careers that were available to graduate students and post-docs, and the audience was able to engage with a panel of experts from these specific career paths.  It was interesting to learn the diverse ways the individuals in the panel for  Careers in Industry and R&D had transitioned from post-docs to a scientist within industry.  A couple of individuals took a post-doc position within industry and then transitioned to a full scientist within that company.  Others had made contacts at scientific conferences and heard of the openings through their network.  And one other actually applied to an online ad without any contacts within that company, but made a great initial impression in her cover letter. Interestingly, some career paths allowed graduate students to directly transition instead of requiring a post-doc position first.  The Industry Operations, Quality Control, and Regulatory Affairs Jobs was one career path that allowed graduate students to directly transition.  Attendees were also given the opportunity to network with key individuals from a wide variety of backgrounds. I also learned tips for interviewing, how to use LinkedIn to engage my career network, and ways to approach  I was able to interact with many graduate students and post-docs during the symposium, and we discussed the different career paths that we were considering as well as the benefits and disadvantages associated with those careers .  Overall, this was an excellent experience that I highly recommend to students and post-docs.