For the third consecutive year, Carnegie Science is honoring our postdoctoral researchers during National Postdoc Appreciation Week September 18 - 22, 2017.  Our postdocs are crucial members of our research teams.  The successes of our postdocs, as they pursue their scientific careers after leaving Carnegie, is deeply important to the Institution and we are very proud of them.  Carnegie plant biologist Devaki Bhaya will be streaming a presentation about the history and opportunities for funding at the National Science Foundation on September 18, at 10:30 Pacific Time.  The talk can be viewed at all Carnegie locations.  The talk will be followed by a lunch on the Global Ecology and Plant Biology campus in California. Numerous additional celebrations are occurring at other departments.

In 2015 we joined the national celebration that recognizes the importance of postdoctoral fellows, using the occasion to promote, support and encourage these researchers.  They are vital to advancing Carnegie Science. That year the postdocs initiated the Carnegie Institution Postdoctoral Association (CIPA) and every department has a chapter. Individual CIPA representatives have been active in their chapters, providing forums for developing social and networking opportunities, working with the administration to enhance the postdoctoral experience, and providing professional and career development for the 150 or so Carnegie postdocs.

That first year we also established the Postdoctoral Innovation and Excellence (PIE) Awards. Every quarter one postdoc is honored for their extraordinary accomplishments in science, mentoring, and community service.  The nominations are made by department directors, and the recipients are chosen by the Office of the President. So far, seven postdocs have been recognized with the honor—Matthew Sieber, Rebecca Albright, Johanna Teske, Zehra Nizami, Mary Whelan, Jia-Ying Zhu, and Zachery Geballe. They all represent the extraordinary talent, commitment, and community spirit that Carnegie postdocs have become known for. I look forward to reading the coming nominations!

Carnegie postdocs are absolutely fundamental for ensuring that Carnegie Science remains at the forefront of discovery. They drive the “Carnegie way” of innovative science, bringing fresh perspectives and new technical approaches to our laboratories and fieldwork. Our postdocs are highly sought after. They go on to jobs at the most prestigious academic, governmental, non-profit, and private sector organizations all over the world. Our postdocs will lead the future of science, which is fundamental to the betterment of humankind and the world we depend upon.  I thank them for their remarkable dedication and superior work.