TH E   N I H    C A T A L Y S T     S E P T E M B E R  –  O C T O B E R   2008


NIH Fellows Job Fair, S.T.E.M. Talent 2008

by Lori Keating (FDA CBER)

Fall has arrived, which means beyond a much needed respite from summer heat, it is time for the Research Festival. This year, the 21st NIH Research Festival will be held October 14–17. The entire NIH community is invited to enjoy a full program of talks and posters from the NIH intramural program's best.

In addition to learning about your colleagues' latest research developments, postdoctoral fellows reaching the end of their tenure at the NIH can explore career opportunities at a special event all day on October 16 at the Natcher Conference Center (Bethesda, NIH Building 45) called S.T.E.M. Talent 2008: A Symposium and Career Fair for Postdocs in the Capital Region. S.T.E.M. stands for science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

This offering is part of the Festival's Symposium and Career Fair for Postdocs. This year OITE and FelCom have teamed with Rockville Economic Development, Inc. (REDI), and other local organizations to provide a career fair with a goal of keeping scientific talent in the D.C. metropolitan area, working for local companies or perhaps launching new business ventures. The career fair "is designed to help local companies find the talent they need for their continued success," said Sally Sternbach of REDI.

Although local companies and organizations will be a focus, several national biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies including Regeneron Pharmaceuticals and Illumina also will be at S.T.E.M. Talent 2008. Over 40 companies and organizations are expected to attend. In addition to the companies and organizations with employment vacancies to fill, numerous workshops focused on training topics and employment opportunities will be offered.

Panel discussions include Opportunities for Career Training; Interviewing Skills; Working in Established Companies; Governments and Other Opportunities; Working in Non-Profits; Making the Move to a New Position; and Entrepreneurial Opportunities. Dr. Chad Womack, co-founder, president and chief scientific officer of NanoVec, LLC, will give a keynote address at 9:00 a.m. More information, including a list of the employers who are coming to S.T.E.M. Talent 2008, is available at

Whether or not you are planning to continue your career in the D.C. area, this event will be a great opportunity to see what local companies and organizations have to offer or to explore national employment options.

Job seekers, if you do attend, be prepared to impress your future employer by dressing professionally and bringing several copies of your CV and résumé.

FelCom Seminar Series, Career Development for Fellows

by Sudha Chennasamudram (FDA CBER), FelCom Publicity Subcommittee

Finding the right career path can be a challenge. To help postdoctoral fellows at the NIH, FelCom's career development subcommittee offers a series of seminars and workshops illuminating various career options and all their nuances.

These seminars and workshops, organized with support from OITE, are offered throughout the year (except during summer) as a part of an on-going series. Most of the seminars feature individuals who work in a particular field and who can tell you what it is like to do that job and the path they took to get there.

Starting a career as an independent researcher and finding funding can be a difficult task. One seminar explains how to apply for the K99/R00 research grant, a funding mechanism to support early career researchers in the transition to their own laboratory. Similarly, a seminar offered in December will help fellows interested in teaching at small colleges and primarily undergraduate institutions.

For fellows considering careers beyond the laboratory or academia, we are developing seminars on opportunities available in the field of science policy and within the federal government. The seminar series also offers information about résumé writing and interviewing.

A complete list of the seminars and events organized by FelCom's career development subcommittee for the 2008–2009 series follows. For information about upcoming career development offerings, refer to For other career development seminars, see the OITE website at Note that many past seminars are archived at We hope the series will help you find your dream job.

FelCom Career Development Subcommittee
2008–2009 Career Development Seminar Series


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This page last updated on October 1, 2008, by Christopher Wanjek