for STEM women on the academic career path



Prof. Jameson designed and coordinated the UIC Post-doc Institute for preparing STEM women for a career in academia, a series of workshops described below. In addition, she prepared talks and source materials for each of these workshops.

The Post-doc Institute (PDI) Structure and Faculty Requirements

Session Participant roleMode PDI Faculty expertise and instructions Materials
1. Balancing personal and professional life and preparing an individual career development plan Q & A panel discussion 4 young STEM women faculty with children (+ staff scientist from national lab) provide their own strategies for life-career balance
2. Research integrity; managing your data and your research discuss case studies, Q & A case studies discussion; presentation/discussion Research Integrity Officer provides examples of research integrity situations, ambiguous and otherwise; Senior STEM faculty (BioS Prof & Head) provides strategies and tools for managing data and research
3. Getting the mentoring you need, cultivating sponsors, setting up collaborations Q & A presentations, discussion 3 Senior STEM faculty (CS, Chem, BioS, Dean LAS) provide strategies for finding mentors and sponsors, starting collaborations
4. Job search; finding the right match Q & A presentations, discussions Senior STEM Faculty from Research I Univ, small school STEM faculty, Staff Scientist from National lab + Industry, instructed to provide descriptions of the nature of the job in these types of institutions, how they differ from each other, and what the hiring committee is looking for in each case
5. Overview of Funding process Q & A presentations, panel discussion A sitting NSF program officer, an NIH Study Section member, and a DOE/DOD/DARPA program manager are instructed to provide general overviews of funding agencies (what do they fund, i.e., their mission, how do they make their decisions to fund, how to get info about funding at these agencies)
6. Getting published, increasing visibility, responding to reviewer comments submit a manuscript in journal-ready form prior to session, discuss reviews received, Q & A presentations by panel of 2; manuscript review + discussion of reviews Senior STEM faculty, Visiting Scholars (CS, Geol), provide strategies on getting published and increasing visibility in their fields. Anonymous experts provide written reviews for manuscripts prior to session; STEM profs (BioS, Chem) with extensive publication records discuss with individual authors the anonymous expert reviews they received.
7. Proposal review submit 6-page proposal prior to session, individually discuss with review panel anonymous expert review of individual submitted proposals, panel review Anonymous expert reviewers provide written reviews of submitted proposals prior to session; former NSF program officers acting as reviewing panel provide written reviews of proposals and discuss proposal strengths and weaknesses with individual authors during the session
8. Preparing various parts of application package I Q & A presentation, discussion A senior STEM faculty, search committee veteran, provides good and poor examples of cover letter, CV, research statement, teaching philosophy for applying to Research I university and separately for applying to small liberal arts college
9. Preparing application package II: finding a suitable niche, positioning oneself in the faculty job market bring first draft application package, discuss it with advisor for individual niche adviser team-on-one discussion The research advisor team confers with their post-doc and provides feedback on finding a suitable research niche for this individual in her research community and in the faculty job market. Post-doc makes changes in ICDP and application package accordingly
10. Review of submitted application package submit second draft application package prior to session, discuss feedback from mock search committee panel panel-on-one review Senior STEM faculty, search committee veterans (ECE, CS, BioS) acting as search committee examine submitted applications and provide detailed suggestions for improving individual application packages.
11. Preparing for campus interview, negotiating an offer Q & A presentation, discussion A senior STEM faculty, veteran search committee chair and Distinguished Professor, and a STEM department head, veteran negotiator, provide strategies for preparing for a successful campus interview and negotiating an offer, respectively
12. The job talk (proposal) present 20-min proposal talk to mock search committee, field questions from panel presentation by faculty candidate to mock search committee of "hiring dept" describing the research they would carry out in the next 5+ years as new faculty At least 5 senior STEM faculty, veteran search committee members in the dept of the candidate, listen to "chalk talk" and act as scrutinizing search committee members probing feasibility, fundability, match of candidate to department needs.
13. 30-minute one-on-one campus interview meet with a faculty member of "hiring dept" in his office office interview with a faculty candidate A senior STEM faculty, veteran search committee member, former NSF program officer, acts as faculty of hiring dept, instructed to steer interview toward future research plans and to scrutinize candidate's defense of its fundability during a 30-minute informal interview in his office
14. Formal research seminar during campus interview present a 45-minute formal research presentation to hiring dept and field probing questions research seminar presentation by a faculty candidate in a format and venue typical of the candidate's field The faculty and grad students of the "hiring STEM department"attend seminar and ask probing questions, just as they would in a formal research seminar of a job candidate
15. Anatomy of an NSF CAREER proposal, preparing a budget for it Q & A presentations discussion, examples of budgets and Project Summaries A senior STEM faculty, former NSF program officer and NSF CAREER panelist, presents the structure of an NSF CAREER proposal; a campus Office of Research Services staff member presents how to prepare a budget and provides examples of budgets
16. Starting a lab, planning for tenure Q & A presentation, discussion, hand-out examples of lab rules A mid-career STEM faculty, managing a lab research group who still remembers how she built a lab from scratch, provides various strategies for planning a new lab (planning starts from negotiating an offer!),
17. Your role as a laboratory leader, building and sustaining an effective team, conflict resolution Q & A presentation, discussion A senior STEM faculty, managing a lab research group, presents building a research team, authorship ethics, effective conflict resolution, provides case studies for discussion
18. Educational plan for a CAREER proposal, assessment plan for it prepare a Project Summary of an NSF CAREER proposal prior to session; critique each other's project summaries at the session (based on checklist); Q & A presentations discussion A senior STEM faculty, NSF CAREER panelist provides detailed critique of sample educational plans; and a faculty expert on educational assessment in STEM who is also a veteran NSF grantee, provides general overview of how to write up the assessment portion of the Educational Plan for an NSF CAREER proposal
19. Becoming an effective teacher, gender bias in student evaluations Q & A, discussions presentation, discussion A senior STEM faculty member man NSF makes a presentation on becoming an effective STEM teacher; a sociologist expert on gender bias presents research about student evaluations of teaching.
20. Becoming a mentor, strategies for effective mentoring in your lab Q & A, discussion presentation, case studies, discussion A panel of 3 senior STEM faculty provide various strategies for preparing PhD students for independent careers
21. Finding your research community,cultivating a national/international reputation within it Q & A, discussion presentation, discussion A panel of 3 senior STEM faculty provide various strategies for cultivating international/national reputation in your research area
22. Building institutional support bring examples of problems encountered by new faculty as they learn how to do things within the university, for discussions on how to find solutions presentation, case studies, discussion A panel of 3 senior STEM faculty presents the need for institutional support (making friends and influencing people within the university is just as important as building a research reputation outside); provides a list of typical problems encountered by new faculty and how to find solutions for them within an institution; panel fields Q & A on problem solving within one's institution using examples from UIC infrastructure/ support system
23. Time management; Dual career issues Q & A presentation, discussion A panel of 3 senior STEM faculty who are halves of dual career couples field Q & A on (a) job search, (b) negotiating offers, (c) effective time management

This Post-Doc Institute was presented by Professor Jameson at Gender Summit 3 North America , in a talk entitled 'Supporting Academic Women in STEM: The Post-Doc Institute' , Nov. 14, 2013, in the Session on Improving Career-Life Balance.

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