KUPA Meetings & Events

KUPA Summer Picnic

Sunday June 24th, 2018
Annual KU Postdoc Social

Dinner picnic organized by KU Postdoctoral Association at the Clinton Lake Overlook Park (Shelter 002) as our annual social event. All postdocs and their family members were gathered and enjoyed a eventful evening in a friendly atmosphere. KUPA provided food for the BBQ including hot dogs, burgers (meat and veggie), salads, buns, soft-drinks, snacks and paper goods. For pics of the event click here.

Developing your CV and Resume

Friday May 04th, 2018
Speaker: Wendy Shoemaker & Natalia Plotnikov, Career Counselors at the Career Center at the University of Kansas.

Wendy is the Senior Associate Director at the Career Center. She conducts research on campus as well as helps to train new career counselors. Natalia is the Employment Services Manager at the Career Center. She oversees job postings on the KU Connections job database and helps to coordinate on-campus interviews. She is also involved in developing relationships between alumni and potential employers of current KU students.

Career Exploration and Today’s Job Market

Friday March 09th, 2018
Speaker: Dr. Damon Talbott; Program Coordinator in the Office of Graduate Studies at the University of Kansas.

Dr. Damon Talbott; Program Coordinator in the Office of Graduate Studies at the University of Kansas. He creates and coordinates professional development programs, manages communications, and plans and executes campus-wide events. He specializes in helping graduate students find career paths and training undergraduate, graduate students and postdocs to find and secure funding for graduate school and research projects.

Scientific Writing in Pharmaceutical Companies

Friday March 24th, 2017
Speaker: Pippa Loupe, PhD. Director, Academic Affairs and Network, Discovery and Product Development, Global R&D Teva Pharmaceutical Industries.

Dr. Pippa Loupe will deliver a presentation on “How your PhD makes you a Good Candidate for Jobs Involving Scientific Writing in Pharmaceutical Companies”. Dr. Loupe has held multiple positions at Teva since 2002, and the core focus of her work has been on helping clinical investigators and preclinical researchers publish their research on Teva’s innovative products. During her talk, she will describe jobs in the pharmaceutical industry that relate to medical and scientific writing and will offer insight on skills needed when transitioning from academia to industry.

University Career Center Resources

Friday February 17th, 2017
Speaker: David Gaston, Executive Director of the University Career Center

This February, we are excited to invite David Gaston to discuss the many career planning resources available at the University Career Center (UCC). David has been instrumental in initiating a partnership with KUPA, which will greatly improve the organization’s visibility and ability to meet the needs of our membership.

Research Integrity and Misconduct

Friday January 20th, 2017
Speaker: Susan MacNally, Director of Research Integrity

One of the great things that we are able to do every spring is to sponsor travel awards for postdocs. In order to be eligible, we require training in the responsible conduct of research. Although proof of training can consist of a memorandum from your PI or department, we’ve also initiated an ethics seminar that will count toward eligibility. We’re happy to welcome Susan MacNally, Director of Research Integrity, who will deliver a presentation on research integrity and misconduct and hold a brief Q/A session.

Attendance to this meeting fulfills an eligibility requirement for the 2017 KUPA travel award application

Visibility and Impact for Early Career Researchers

Friday December 16th, 2016
Speaker: Josh Bolick, KU Scholarly Communications Librarian

Academic social media and other Web 2.0 tools are increasingly necessary in academic job market navigation. However,  there is a confusing number of new platforms and tools that help researchers build visibility for themselves and their research outputs, as well as boost and measure the impact of those outputs. Scholarly Communication Librarian Josh Bolick will discuss some of these tools and their purposes, and suggest strategies for building a manageable academic social media profile.

Impact of doing a postdoc on Early Career in Biomedicine

Friday November 18th, 2016
Speaker: Dr. Donna K. Ginther, Professor of Economics and Director of Center for Science Technology & Economic Policy

Dr. Donna K. Ginther will join us and give a talk titled “The Impact of Postdocs on Early Career in Biomedicine”.  Dr. Ginther is an eminent labor economist who has advised the National Academies of Science, the National Institutes of Health, and the Sloan Foundation on the diversity and future of the scientific workforce, and conducted seminal research into the current state of postdoctoral researchers.

Transfer your Skills from Ph.D to life outside of Academia

Friday October 28th, 2016
Speaker: Dr. Lisa Balbes, of Balbes Consultants

How does one identify and emphasize transferable skills from the Ph.D training to life outside of Academia?  Please, welcome our guest speaker and come with questions to learn about how to showcase the incredible training and experience you have gained in your pre and post-doctoral training journey.  Examples are chemistry and biological science-focused, but are meant to be applicable to all disciplines.

2016 National Postdoc Appreciation Week Celebration!

Thursday September 29th, 2016

It’s the National Postdoc Appreciation Week of 2016! We KUPA Officers wish you a very happy NPAW and sincerely invite you to our NPAW celebration event on September 29th at Centennial Room of Kansas Union, 12 -1 pm.  Lunch, comradeship and raffle prizes! Meet Dr. James Tracy, Vice-Chancellor of KU Research and Dr. Rodolfo Torres, Associate Vice-Chancellor of KU Research.

Huili Yao, KUPA President, and Rita-Marie McFadden, KUPA Vice-president
Huili Yao, KUPA President, and Rita-Marie McFadden, KUPA Vice-president

Effective Communication and Advocacy for Academics

Friday September 2nd, 2016
Speaker: Dr. Robert C. Rowland, Director of Graduate Studies and Communication Studies Professor at the University of Kansas

Truly effective communication is so much more than a good powerpoint slide, or speaking audibly.  Learn the tricks of the trade that can be applied to specialized situations, or with a general audience.  Our speaker is Dr. Robert C. Rowland, Professor and Director of Graduate Studies, Communication Studies at the University of Kansas.  His talk is titled, “Effective Communication and Advocacy for Academics.”

Open Forum: KU Postdoc Assoc. Meeting!

Thursday May 5th, 2016
Speaker: Us!

We are having a meeting in May to have fun and get an update about… us!  Your help in brainstorming specific topics on how to make the KU Postdoctoral Association even better would be helpful and critical to moving forward.  If you will be a new postdoc, this is a great way to meet people and focus the KU Postdoc Association on your career needs.  If you haven’t been able to attend because of time, location or seminar topics, now is your chance to speak up!  The KU Postdoctoral Association is here for you.  Sign up for the May meeting to have a voice in this organization!


Friday April 29th, 2016
Speaker: Sharon Riley, Organizational Development Coordinator at KU Libraries

Sharon Riley, an Organizational Development Coordinator and a member of the Organizational Development Unit for KU Libraries presented Mindfulness: How Mindful Moments Can Increase Effectiveness and Decrease Stress.  What is Mindfulness?  It’s “paying attention on purpose to the present moment, non-judgmentally.”  It really helps people enhance their mental capabilities, such as focus, concentration, abstract thinking and creativity, as well as improve their social interactions in the workplace with peers, supervisors, students and mentors.  (Adapted from KU’s Sixth Annual Staff Leadership Summit, 2016)

Emotional Intelligence

Friday March 25th, 2016
Speaker: Maureen Purcell, Career Coach at SoLwork, LLC

According to author Daniel Goleman, “Today companies worldwide routinely look through the lens of [emotional intelligence] in hiring, promoting, and developing their employees.” The truth is that emotional intelligence, or EQ, can matter more than IQ, even in the research community.  Our invited speaker is Maureen Purcell, a career coach from SoLwork.

Maureen Purcell II
Mureen Purcell, Career/Life coach and executive leadership of SoLwork

Ethics Seminar with Susan MacNally

Friday January 29th, 2016
Speaker: Susan MacNally, Director of Research Integrity

One of the great things that we are able to do every spring is to sponsor travel awards. In order to be eligible, we require training in the responsible conduct of research.  While proof of training can consist of a memorandum from your PI or department, we’ve also initiated an ethics seminar that will count toward eligibility. We’re happy to welcome Susan MacNally, Director of Research Integrity.

Writing Your Way to the Top 10%

Friday December 11th, 2015

Many of us are interested in applying for postdoc grants or career transition grants (from postdoc to faculty), but preparing a successful grant proposal is challenging. Do you want to know how to make your proposal stand out among other submissions? It is our pleasure to have both Dr. Robert Hanzlik and Erin Adamson as our guest speakers for KUPA December luncheon meeting.

KUPA Hanzlik I
Dr. Robert Hanzlik, Professor, Director of NIH COBRE Center in Protein Structure and Function

Career and Talent Development Seminar

Friday November 20th, 2015

Please join us to learn about strategies and philosophies that can be applied towards your career development as a postdoc and afterwards!  Mike Rounds, the Associate Vice Provost of Human Resources Management, accompanied by Ola Faucher, the Director of Human Resources, will be discussing, “Talent Development Philosophy at KU.”

Learning and Career Development Resources at KU

Mike Rounds, Associate Vice Provost, Human Resources Management

Postdoctoral Fellowships  Panel of Speakers

Friday October 23rd, 2015

Please join us to learn about Postdoctoral Fellowships!  There will be a panel of current postdoctoral researchers discussing their specific fellowships, both national and local.  This is an excellent opportunity to learn what is available, as well as tips for creating successful applications.

Handout:  Databases and Resources to help locate grants

Left to Right: Fernando Estrada, Nicole Windmon, Pinakin Sukthankar, Xiaoqing “Sarah” Wu

KU Postdoc Appreciation Week!

Friday September 25th, 2015

Please join us in celebration of the National Postdoc Appreciation Week!  To honor all of the postdocs’ innovation and leadership at the University of Kansas, Jim Tracy, Vice Chancellor for Research, will give a brief welcome, joined by Kevin Boatright, Director of External Affairs.  There will be catered food, door prizes and an opportunity to network with postdocs at KU.

VC Jim Tracy VI
Dr. Jim Tracy, Vice Chancellor for Research

Networking and Online Image Seminar

Friday August 28th, 2015

With job searches heating up for some of us, we’d like to host a Networking and Online Image seminar as the first KUPA meeting of the Fall. We’re meeting with Chance Clutter, Assistant Director of the KU Career Center.

Chance Cutter
Chance Clutter, Assistant Director of the KU Career Center