Your success is central to the vision and mission of MD Anderson. We advance the education and training of you -- our next generation of leaders -- by engaging you in professional development activities that complement your technical skills training and discipline-specific expertise.
MD Anderson Cancer Center has a “Postdoctoral Fellow Stipend Policy” which defines the minimum stipend level for a postdoctoral fellow appointment as the National Institutes of Health Kirschstein-National Research Service Award (NRSA) stipend for zero years of experience. Annual incremental increases for years of postdoctoral appointment that parallel the Kirschstein-NRSA stipends are recommended, but not required.
All postdoctoral fellows who are benefits-eligible (i.e. appointment > 4 ½ months; FTE > 0.5; receive compensation from MD Anderson) receive MD Anderson competitive benefits during their training. The standard benefits package includes the following:
- Medical insurance
- 120 hours vacation and 80 hours sick leave annually (full-time fellows)
- Up to 480 hours FMLA leave after fulfilling criteria
- Fitness Center membership (full-time postdoctoral fellows)
- Parental leave
- Access to group plans for dental, vision, short- and long- term disability
- Health care and daycare spending accounts
- Enrollment in the Teacher’s Retirement System
- Access to the Employee Assistance Program, Employee Health and Well-Being, and the Ombuds office
Annual sick leave carries forward annually and automatically, but the maximum amount that a full-time trainee may have at any one time is 160 hours.
Differing in content and format from the online and in-person sessions provided by AVA-Trainee, the newly designed “Fast Track Orientation” is offered periodically to introduce postdoctoral fellows to benefits, policies, processes, resources and faculty and postdoc insights that make your postdoc training more productive and facilitate your professional and career growth. Mentor/mentee training as well as faculty and postdoc insights and strategies to maximize your postdoctoral experience are included. The orientation includes a resource fair that introduces postdoctoral fellows to MD Anderson resources such as the Alumni & Faculty Association, Research Medical Library, Scientific Publications, and much more. Because space is limited, registration is required.
The Individual Development Plan (IDP), a cornerstone of a successful training experience and now required by NIH for all granting mechanisms, is emphasized. The Initial Training Plan and Annual Appraisal were developed to facilitate conversations between you and your mentor(s), by assessing the needs of you and your mentor(s), enumerating short- and long- term goals and identifying the professional development resources required to facilitate achievement.
Whether in academic medicine or industry, your professional success and fulfillment requires more than just great technical skills. Being active in the Postdoctoral Association (PDA) and/or its executive committee (PDAEC) provides real-world scenarios that can inform your resume/CV or next interview by enhancing your emotional intelligence, interpersonal effectiveness and management and leadership skills.
Modeled after our highly successful faculty leadership programs, the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs and Development (OPAD) develops and facilitates interactive workshops and trainings designed to enhance your self-awareness and team dynamics, active listening, team and talent development, etc.
We also partner with our Office of Career and Entrepreneurship Advancement to provide career and professional advising to help you identify potential career paths. We currently use the free assessment at myIDP.sciencecareers.org to facilitate this discovery. Other assistance provided is listed below.
- One on one coaching to:
- Network for career development
- Identify and prepare for interviews
- Convert a CV to a Resume
- Assistance with preparing applications and for interviews for the next phase of your career
- Assistance with questions regarding postdoctoral appointments, benefits, policies
- Resouces and training to navigate difficult conversations, for aligning and managing expectations, and/or differences of opinion with a mentor or others
About the program: The Trainee Editing Service at MD Anderson is comprised of postdoctoral fellow and senior scientist editors with various backgrounds. This program serves two purposes
- To provide a free peer-editing service to MD Anderson graduate students and postdoctoral fellows.
- Presents an education opportunity for those who wish to gain editing experience. This program encourages the submission of early-phase manuscripts, award applications, reviews, book chapters, etc. Full follow-up editing of trainees’ original research papers is still available through the Department of Scientific Publications, which should be contacted separately.
Please review our guidelines before submitting a writing sample.
Directions for submitting a document for editing:
1. Download and Complete cover sheet.
2. Email completed cover sheet and document to be edited (in Microsoft Word format) to TES@mdanderson.org.
NOTE: Remember to copy ("cc") your primary investigator (P.I.) on the e-mail.
Brittany C. Parker Kerrigan, Ph.D.
Brittany is a T32 Translational Cancer Nanotechnology fellow in the Department of Neurosurgery at MD Anderson and Department of Bioengineering at Rice University. Her current project focuses on the development of more powerful diagnostic and treatment modalities for patients with glioblastoma. She received her bachelor of science in biology from the University of California, Irvine. At Irvine, Brittany performed Huntington Disease research in the laboratory of Gary Lynch, Ph.D. She earned her Ph.D., at MD Anderson in the lab of Wei Zhang, Ph.D., where she helped discover and characterize the recurrent fusion gene, FGFR3-TACC3. Brittany enjoys editing as a means to help others and to strengthen her own writing.
Lingyong Li, Ph.D.
Lingyong is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Anesthesiology and Perioperative Medicine. His current projects focus on cellular and molecular mechanisms of pain transduction and circuitry, and plasticity of the spinal dorsal horn associated with chronic neuropathic pain. Before moving to MD Anderson Cancer Center, he worked at the Department of Pharmacology of Vanderbilt University Medical Center studying the role of GPCR Kinases in drug addiction and Parkinson’s disease. Currently, Lingyong is an Editorial Board Member and regular reviewer for several international journals.
Rachel Mullen, Ph.D.
Rachel is a postdoctoral fellow in the laboratory of Richard Behringer, Ph.D. in the Department of Genetics. Her current research focuses on understanding cell-cell communication and signaling between adjacent epithelial and mesenchymal tissues using the developing reproductive tract as a model. She earned her Ph.D. at Indiana University School of Medicine Indianapolis in the lab of Simon Rhodes, Ph.D. Her dissertation project mapped and characterized tissue-specific enhancers of the human LHX3 gene, a transcription factor with essential roles in pituitary and neural development. Rachel takes pleasure in editing and enjoys helping others craft the best possible manuscript.
Tamara Laskowski, Ph.D.
Tamara is a postdoctoral fellow at MD Anderson Cancer Center in the CAR T-cell Therapy Lab in the department of Pediatrics, where she genetically engineers modified T-cells and Natural Killer cells for applications in cancer immunotherapy. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from Baylor University, and subsequently her Ph.D. in Human Molecular Genetics and Immunology from the University Of Texas Graduate School Of Biomedical Sciences. Her areas of expertise are Genetic Engineering and Stem Cell Biology. Her graduate work focused on the correction of genetic mutations in stem cells from patients afflicted with an immunodeficiency called Wiskott - Aldrich syndrome and the subsequent derivation of immune cells with restored function. Tamara is passionate about scientific writing. She enjoys working with others to edit and refine scientific papers in order to improve the way each paper communicates the work of the author.
- National Postdoctoral Association
- Biocareers.com We have a paid membership to Biocareers.com to allow all trainees to access the career development content for free.
- Minority Postdoc Published by the non-profit DiverseScholar, it features resources and information related to the minority postdoctoral STEM experience.
- NPA Career Center Allows job seekers to search and immediately apply to hundreds of postdoctoral, administrative and faculty positions.
- Form I-983 Completing the Training Plan for STEM Optional Practice Training (OPT). For instructions visit the Academic and Visa Administration internal web site.
2017 Annual Presidential Career Symposium
Speaker introduction at Postdoc Symposium
Postdoc committee members and volunteers distribute name tags and registration materials
Speaker engages postdocs on alternative STEMM careers
Postdocs assemble for a presentation