Bridging the gap: increasing collaboration between research mentors and career development educators for PhD and postdoctoral training success

Shoba Subramanian, Jessica A. Hutchins, Natalie Lundsteen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

National reports and funding mandates have called for trainee-centered PhD and postdoctoral training and the need to support diverse career outcomes. As a result, career and professional development (CPD) resources have expanded at several institutions. Despite the growth of innovative and impactful CPD resources, access to and awareness of resources have been inconsistent and inequitable for graduate and postdoctoral trainees. In the current model, core education occurs in two unconnected ways: faculty research mentors provide scientific competencies training, while CPD educators provide transferable competencies training, which is separate from the curriculum and optional at most institutions. Research mentors are influential in supporting trainee engagement with CPD programs; however, most are either unaware of the rapidly growing opportunities or may not see the direct benefit to scientific development and productivity. Due to this disconnect, some trainees can be inadvertently distanced from CPD resources, leading to more inequities among groups. To bridge this gap, here we propose a realignment of the current model via a set of practical and collaborative solutions providing benefit to all stakeholders. With greater awareness and collaboration, research mentors and CPD educators can complement each other's expertise to better support trainee experiences and outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalMolecular biology of the cell
Volume33
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Feb 1 2022

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Molecular Biology
  • Cell Biology

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