Good News Everyone!
Firstly, I apologize for not updating in a very long time. As I wrote about before, I’ve been on the hunt for a job in academia for the past year. I’m happy to let you know that I’ve accepted a tenure track assistant professor position in the Chemistry and Biochemistry Department at Seton Hall University. I feel extremely lucky to have this opportunity to become a Principal Investigator and teach and train young students to become scientists. This was the end of a lengthy journey that again was fortunately shorter than most for myself. I’d like to finally wrap up and share some of my experiences with the interview process and what went into my decision making.
In my search I submitted almost four dozen applications over the past year to departments in everything from Biophysics to Bioengineering to Biochemistry. I felt that with my background and my goals I would fit well in a department that is focused on life sciences. I knew that I only wanted to do this if I felt that I’d have a good chance of being able to get grants and support students. I ended up interviewing at a few universities at both doctoral-granting institutions as well as undergraduate-only institutions. It was a tough decision, but I ultimately decided that to really be able to ensure support for my students and my work that I had to go to a doctoral-granting institute.
Seton Hall is the ideal place for me to begin my career as an independent PI for a few reasons. Firstly, the university is expanding and developing a new medical school program. This opens the door to many clinical collaborations, something that is important to me because I’ve always wanted to do research that directly impacts people’s health. Second, the university is located very close to my current work at PHRI as well as close to some collaborators at NYU and Columbia University. I am therefore able to maintain the friendships that I’ve made while working as a postdoc and I’m able to provide even more opportunities to my students. One final reason that SHU works for me is the atmosphere and the people working in the department. There are so many places that you could get a job where you’re just filling a seat or a cubical or a desk. I didn’t feel that way when I interviewed at Seton Hall. It felt like the faculty and the students were genuinely interested in each other’s work and in helping each other develop their careers. I’m excited to be able to work with the department and I believe that there’s a lot of room to grow at this place.
I’m so thankful for all of the support and encouragement I’ve received from my friends, family, and colleagues over the past few months. I’ll try to update this blog more frequently as time goes on with my experiences as a young assistant professor. In addition, I’ll be developing an official lab website with information on our projects and some of my student’s achievements. Thank you so much for reading and please keep a lookout for new posts! If you have any questions please feel free to ask away; I’d be more than happy to help others in their academic job search too!