Postdocs in Brain Science

Postdoc-20150512-BMED-Eric-James.jpgThe purpose of the Postdocs in Brain Sciences program is to foster a sense of community among postdocs and to encourage discussion about scientific, professional development, and policy-related issues. Our aims are:

  • To encourage interdisciplinary communication between young neuroscientists;
  • To support their professional development;
  • To establish a support network that promotes a healthy and welcoming environment for all postdocs and their families.

With sponsorship from the Carney Institute for Brain Science, we host a number of activities for postdocs, including social gatherings, basic science events, translational events, professional development events, as well as lunch meetings with invited speakers. 

Program Founding

Upon the observation that Brown University lacked a cohesive community of postdoctoral researchers interested in brain sciences, a group of active postdocs came together late in 2014: Chris Ciarleglio (the Neuroscience representative on the Postdoctoral Advisory Panel), Victoria Heimer-McGinn, Catherine Thorn, and Inês Tomás Pereira. Their initial task was to gauge the interest of other neuroscience-related postdocs in forming an active group on campus. It became quickly apparent, however, that postdocs wanted not just a social and scientific group, but also a force for change in the University's treatment of one of its most valuable communities. We immediately gained traction as a group for postdocs, by postdocs. Not long thereafter, Theresa Desrochers and Kristin Scaplen joined us as active members of the executive committee. Membership to our group now spans across departments, from Neuroscience and CLPS, to Applied Mathematics, Engineering, clinical Neurology and clinical Psychiatry. 

From our beginning, the Carney Institute for Brain Science encouraged our formation and graciously became the group's main benefactor and supporter. Together with the Institute's administration, we have built a community for young professionals interested in the brain, and have also worked behind the scenes to ensure that University policies promote a healthy lifestyle for its postdocs. As we look to the future, we hope that PiBS will endure as a driving force behind postdoc equality, fairness, and the highest quality of multidisciplinary brain science.