I would like to thank everyone who participated in this year’s National Postdoc Appreciation Week. Whether it was through the Postdoctoral Assembly (PDA) or an event at your institution, we hope that SOT postdocs and their colleagues nationwide had an opportunity to celebrate the hard work and major accomplishments of the postdoctoral community! As President Hines wrote in his address to SOT postdocs at the beginning of the week, “You, as an SOT postdoctoral scholar, are an integral part of the SOT community—through your individual contributions and those of the collective postdoc family.”
The PDA was created to identify and meet the needs of SOT postdocs. Through establishing communication with Postdoc members, forming long-term collaborations with other SOT Committees, and promoting recruitment and transition to careers, the PDA formulates and implements programs of interest to its members and those in fields intersecting with toxicology. All SOT members who are postdoctoral scholars are a part of the PDA. The Assembly elects the PDA Board to lead their activities.
The ideals we hope to impart to all Postdoc members are to “get involved, stay involved, and get others involved.” SOT postdoctoral scholars, in addition to their involvement in the PDA, may serve in leadership roles for other SOT Committees. Thus, the PDA provides an excellent platform for postdoctoral scholars to develop leadership skills that not only advance the Society’s strategic mission but also enhance the scholars’ scientific growth, networking, and career advancement.
The activities of the PDA are successful largely because of the dedicated volunteers who come forward from the PDA Representatives and the Assembly as a whole to contribute and provide feedback throughout the year. We are excited during this time of planning for the PDA-hosted programs that will take place during the upcoming 2020 SOT Annual Meeting in Anaheim, California. The PDA Board will organize many activities, including the Poster Tours for Trainees, “Career Exploration through Speed Informational Interviews” event, and Postdoctoral Assembly Luncheon. Stay tuned over the coming months for updates on these and other future activities.
The PDA also encourages all SOT postdocs to apply for the 2020 Best Postdoctoral Publication Awards. These awards, presented at the Postdoctoral Assembly Luncheon during the SOT Annual Meeting, recognize outstanding work accomplished during formal mentored postdoctoral traineeships by recognizing exceptional recently published papers in the field of toxicology.
We look forward to facilitating professional development for the SOT postdocs again this year!