Welcome CHOP Research Trainees!

Please take a moment to browse through the following trainee updates - clicking on each link will bring you to that announcement:


April Announcements

Don't forget to mark your calendars for the monthly Postdoc Happy Hour, Friday, April 1 at 5:30pm. Details below!

  • Scientific Writing for Non-Native Speakers of English - April 15 and 21
  • Mobile Health in Research at CHOP: Current Practices and Future Directions, April 26
  • UPenn BPP Event: Art of Speaking Science, April 7 and 14
  • K & F Award Workshops: April 20, May 11 and May 18
  • CHOP Research Safety Day, April 22
  • Science for All - "Scientists Talk Science: Poster Edition," April 23
  • Registration Now Open - Diversity in STEM: Career Opportunities for Doctoral Level Scientists, April 28
  • RCR April Feature: Safe Laboratory Practices
  • National Postdoc Association Needs Your Feedback - Title IX Pregnancy Accommodation Postdoc Survey
  • Complete the National Postdoc Survey - Enter to Win $200 Travel Awards
  • Save the Date: 2016 Symposium on Advances in Genomics, Epidemiology, and Statistics (SAGES)
  • Research Trainee Orientation Sessions in June and July
  • American Society for Microbiology - Upcoming Programs for Grad Students, Postdocs, and Early Career Scientists
  • Monthly Postdoc Happy Hour – April 1 (Location Change)
  • Monthly Postdoc Lunch – April 15

  • Scientific Writing for Non-Native Speakers of English - April 15 and 21

    In collaboration with the Office of Faculty Development, the Office of Responsible Research Training is offering a two-session workshop, "Scientific Writing for Non-Native Speakers of English" on April 15 and 21, 2016. The workshop is designed for research trainees, including postdoctoral fellows, training grant fellows and physician fellows. Mary Blitzer Field, M. Phil., Assistant Director, Office of Faculty Development, is the instructor for both sessions. In these interactive sessions, participants will critique abstracts and introductions from the biomedical literature. In doing so, they will learn to tell compelling scientific stories and master language issues that typically confront non-native speakers of English.

    Session 1 – Abstracts: Capturing Your Scientific Story
    Date: April 15, 2016
    Time: 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
    Location: Abramson Research Center (ARC), 1st Floor, Room 124

    Trace the underlying anatomy of abstracts from basic science and clinical journals. Learn to write abstracts that present scientific stories economically while convincing readers of their novelty and impact. Sample language issues: When is it right to use “a”…”the”? How do verb tense and voice differ? What are some myths about the much maligned passive voice?

    Session 2 – Introductions: Engaging Your Reader
    Date: April 21, 2016
    Time: 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
    Location: Abramson Research Center (ARC), 1st Floor, Room 124

    Trace the story lines of introductions for both hypothesis-testing and descriptive papers. Learn to write introductions that awaken readers’ interest and prepare them for the content that follows. Sample language issues: Why do verb tenses shift in Introductions? How can sentence structure create a sense of inevitable movement forward?

    How to Register
    Send your name, department/division, email address and phone number to Janet Stuart (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) by Friday, April 8, 2016.


    Mobile Health in Research at CHOP: Current Practices and Future Directions, April 26

    Date: Tuesday, April 26, 2016
    Location: Colket Translational Research Building, 1st Floor, Room 1200B
    Time: 10:00 to 11:30 a.m.

    Description:
    Mobile health, or mHealth, describes how mobile technologies can be used as tools and platforms for research and healthcare delivery. How are mobile communication devices currently being used in research and clinical care at CHOP? What are the current practices and future directions? This session will summarize key findings from The CHOP mHealth Survey followed by a discussion of work in progress, challenges and opportunities that impact the future of this emerging technology.

    Featured Speaker and Moderator:
    Lisa Schwartz, PhD
    Psychologist, Division of Oncology
    The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
    Assistant Professor of Clinical Psychology in Pediatrics
    Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

    Panelists:
    Sandra Amaral, MD, MHS
    Attending Physician, Division of Nephrology
    The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
    Assistant Professor of Pediatrics
    Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

    Gregory Tasian, MD, MSc, MSCE
    Attending Physician, Division of Urology
    The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
    Assistant Professor of Urology in Surgery
    Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

    Alex Fiks, MD
    Attending Physician, Emergency Medicine
    The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
    Associate Professor of Pediatrics
    Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania

    Chris Gantz, MBA
    Program Manager
    Recruitment Enhancement Core
    Clinical Research Support Office
    The CHOP Research Institute

    Linda Fleisher, PhD, MPH
    Senior Scientist and Director
    Digital Health Initiative
    Center for Injury Research and Prevention
    The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia

    The Conducting Research at CHOP Seminar Series, sponsored by the Office of Responsible Research Training, is designed to educate the CHOP workforce on key topics related to the implementation and management of sponsored research. Questions may be directed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

    Register Here: http://www.research.chop.edu/programs/crac/mobile_health_in_research.php. All are welcome to attend.


    UPenn BPP Event: Smart Talk: The Art of Public Speaking, April 7 and 14

    Smart Talk: The Art of Public Speaking Part I
    Presenter: Lisa B. Marshall
    Date: Thursday, April 7, 2016
    Time: 9:00am - 10:30am
    Location: Smilow Center 12-146AB
    Details: This class helps attendees organize, design, and deliver professional presentations. Acquire guidelines for designing visuals by analyzing before-and-after versions of PowerPoint slides provided by your colleagues. Find out how to use body language to support your content.

    Register Here via Knowledgelink

    Smart Talk: The Art of Public Speaking Part II
    Presenter: Lisa B. Marshall
    Date: Thursday, April 14, 2016
    Time: 9:00am - 10:30am
    Location: Smilow Center 12-146AB
    Details: This seminar helps attendees cope with speaker apprehension, manage the Q&A, overcome presentation disasters, and respond professionally when asked, "Tell me about your work."

    Register Here via Knowledgelink


    K & F Award Workshops: April 20, May 11 and May 18

    STRATEGIES AND TACTICS FOR PREPARING NIH K- AND F- FELLOWSHIP APPLICATIONS: A SUITE OF HANDS-ON EVENTS FROM BETH SCHACHTER CONSULTING

    Who should attend?

  • Junior faculty (MD, MD/PhD, PhD, DVM) who want to apply for NIH Career Development (K-type) Awards
  • Postdoctoral fellows (late stage) who want to apply for Pathway-to-Independence (K-99/R00) Awards
  • Postdoctoral fellows (early stage) who want to apply for NIH Fellowships (F32)
  • Part 1: Open to all - April 20, 2016, 2:00-4:00PM, CRB Austrian Auditorium

  • Brief introduction to award categories, NIH Institutes, application review criteria
  • Using NIH’s RePORTER Database
  • Developing your Specific Aims page (the 1-page roadmap of the proposal)
  • Introduction to your Research Plan
  • Register for Part 1 Here

    Part 2 for K applicants: May 11, 2016, 2:00-4:00PM, CRB Austrian Auditorium

  • Developing your Research Plan
  • Your Sponsor/Mentor, and the Team and Training Plan – building them around your Research Plan
  • Writing your Biographical Sketch
  • Drafting recommendation letters for team members
  • How to handle resubmissions
  • Visit from past awardees
  • Register for Part 2 for K Applicants Here

    Part 2 for F applicants: May 18, 2016, 2:00-4:30PM, CRB Austrian Auditorium

  • Developing your Research Plan
  • Your Sponsor/Mentor, and the Team and Training Plan – building them around your Research Plan
  • Writing your Biographical Sketch
  • Drafting recommendation letters for team members
  • How to handle resubmissions
  • Visit from past awardees
  • Register for Part 2 for F Applicants Here

    **Events are open to all, registration required**
    The takeaway: As a workshop participant, you will gain a solid understanding of the creative (scientific) and the organizational/administrative aspects of preparing a competitive fellowship application. To help you develop this understanding, along with discussing key elements of the proposal, you will draft a preliminary outline of these sections. Based on the outline, you will then draft an action plan for completing the application.

    The preparation: Before the first workshop session, you will need to watch the NIH video "Meet the Experts in Peer Review for Fellowship Grant Applications." This video covers the essential information about the NIH that will help you understand how to target your application to the appropriate Institute, Program Officer and Study Section. You will also learn about the review process and the criteria for proposal evaluation. After watching the video, you should try to identify best-fit target Institute(s), Program Officer and, if relevant, the best-fit Study Section(s).

    One-on-one sessions: Along with the on-site presentations, I will offer sixteen 45-minute sessions to individual workshop participants. These can include a one-on-one discussion of the plan and/or my reading and giving editorial feedback on, for example, a draft Specific Aims page.


    CHOP Research Safety Day, April 22

    On Friday, April 22, the Office of Research Safety will be hosting the 8th Annual CHOP Research Safety Day from 10:00am to 2:00pm in the Colket Translational Research Building (CTRB), first floor conference rooms. The theme of this year’s event is "Safe Science: A Framework for Success."

    Laurence Eisenlohr, VMD, PhD will be this year’s Keynote Speaker, presenting "Nothing Like the Real Thing: Using Natural Pathogens to Understand Adaptive Immune Responses." Dr. Eisenlohr will be speaking at 12:00pm in CTRB 1100A.

    Administrative departments and vendors that support Research Safety initiatives will be on hand, from 10:00am to 2:00pm in Rooms 1200AB, to provide information about the services and products they offer.

    The annual Safety Pong Tournament will be held in CTRB 1200A. Sign up for a time slot at http://safetyday.research.chop.edu. There will also be registration tables set-up in the Colket Lobby on Monday, April 18 from 11am-1pm and the Abramson Lobby on Wednesday, April 20 from 11am-1pm. There will also be the very popular bean bag toss, Bunsen burner ring toss and more.

    Lunch will be provided to Research Staff and prizes will be awarded! All CHOP Research Staff are invited to attend.

    To register for this event, please visit http://safetyday.research.chop.edu.


    Science for All - "Scientists Talk Science: Poster Edition," April 23

    Do you like explaining your science to a lay audience? Are you interested in developing your verbal science communication skills? Consider volunteering with Science for All, a science outreach organization. Our next event will be "Scientists Talk Science: Poster Edition" at the Fumo Family Library (2437 South Broad Street) of the Free Library of Philadelphia on April 23, 2016. This is a great opportunity to use an old poster to develop lay language suitable for any audience.

    Interested in volunteering for this event? Please contact Zenobia Cofer at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

    Science for All is a science community outreach group founded by CHOP postdoctoral fellow, Zenobia Cofer. The following link features details about previous Science for All events.

    https://bpcnewsletter.wordpress.com/2016/01/19/science-for-all-bringing-science-to-the-people-of-philadelphia/


    Registration Now Open - Diversity in STEM: Career Opportunities for Doctoral Level Scientists, April 28

    Calling all biomedical graduate students and postdoctoral fellows!

    Are you interested in career opportunities open to doctoral level scientists?

    Would you like to meet individuals who transitioned to nonprofit, industry, or alternative academic positions?

    Do you want to have a full day away from the lab to map your career options and network with potential employers?

    Then you should attend Diversity in STEM: Career Opportunities for Doctoral Level Scientists on April 28, 2016 at The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia.

    Diversity in STEM: Career Opportunities for Doctoral Level Scientists is a one day meeting featuring doctoral level panelists who successfully transitioned to diverse careers. Interested individuals can register for this event at the following link: https://my.ascb.org/initiatives/#/apply/48. If not an American Society of Cell Biology (ASCB) member, simply register for a new account. Participants will be subject to a $10 registration fee collected at time of check-in on April 28, 2016.

    View the Diversity in STEM Agenda


    RCR April Feature: Safe Laboratory Practices

    The safe use of biological, chemical, radioactive, and other hazardous materials is an important concern for everyone working in research laboratories. How can you reduce the risks associated with certain equipment or other potentially harmful substances? What training programs do you need to complete? Visit the RCR Web site at http://rcr.research.chop.edu to learn more about the responsible practices, institutional guidelines, and policies that are fundamental for ensuring a safe and healthy work environment.

    The RCR Web site provides centralized education, policy and training resources that encourage best practices and promote scientific integrity. For more information about CHOP’s RCR program or Web site, contact Janet Stuart at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 267-426- 7496.


    National Postdoc Association Needs Your Feedback - Title IX Pregnancy Accommodation Postdoc Survey

    Your participation is requested in a survey on postdocs’ experiences as new parents. Researchers at U.C. Hastings’ Center for WorkLife Law are surveying postdocs who welcomed a child into their home during their postdoc years as part of an effort to advance institutional support for postdoc parents. The survey results will be used, in partnership with the National Postdoctoral Association, to develop and advocate for best practices to support postdocs who are new parents.

    If you became a parent while a postdoc, you can participate in this survey so that the world can know more about the experiences of postdoc parents—and how to better support and advocate for your needs. All responses will be kept anonymous unless you explicitly consent to reveal identifying information in the survey.

    Visit https://www.research.net/r/PostdocParents to take the survey, or to access more information on the survey and the researchers. The survey is open until Wednesday, April 6.


    Complete the National Postdoc Survey - Enter to Win $200 Travel Awards

    The National Postdoc Survey Research Team would like to shine a light on the plight of postdocs nationwide.

    Here are some reasons why you should take the National Postdoc Survey (NPS):
    1) Contribute data to this inaugural survey, an opportunity to make your voice heard
    2) Inform advocacy efforts and help improve all aspects of the postdoc experience
    3) Speak as honestly and candidly as you like – responses are completely anonymous
    4) Enjoy a streamlined set of questions, estimated to take 15-20 minutes to complete
    5) Enter into a drawing for $200 travel awards to a scientific meeting of your choice

    Complete the Survey: https://redcap.uchicago.edu/surveys/?s=W87XWMKHWE

    National Postdoc Survey Research Team
    Sean McConnell, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Scholar
    Erica Westerman, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Scholar
    Joseph Pierre, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow
    Heather Titley, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Scholar
    Giorgio Grasselli, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Scholar
    Erin Heckler, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Affairs Administrator
    Nancy Schwartz, Ph.D., Dean of Postdoctoral Affairs

    For additional information, visit http://postdocsurvey.org. Any questions, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..


    Save the Date: 2016 Symposium on Advances in Genomics, Epidemiology, and Statistics (SAGES)

    The Center for Genetics and Complex Traits (CGACT) of the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania will hold the annual Symposium on Advances in Genomics, Epidemiology and Statistics (SAGES) on Friday, June 3, 2016.

    Speakers at SAGES 2016 include:
    Andrew Allen, Duke University
    Chris Amos, Dartmouth College
    Jill Barnholtz-Sloan, Case Western University
    Alexis Battle, Johns Hopkins University
    Christopher Brown, University of Pennsylvania
    Christoph Lange, Harvard University
    Itsik Pe'er, Columbia University
    Kimberly Siegmund, University of Southern California

    SAGES 2016 will take place in the Arthur H. Rubenstein Auditorium in the Perelman School of Medicine, Smilow Center for Translational Research (SCTR), located at 3400 Civic Center Blvd. , Philadelphia, PA 19104. Registration will open in early April.

    Participants to SAGES 2016 are invited to submit an abstract for poster presentation at the time of registration. Poster awards will be available for trainees in pre-doc as well as post-doc categories. All trainees who submit an abstract for poster presentation are also eligible for travel support.

    Visit our website at: http://www.med.upenn.edu/sages.

    For further information and to be included in future mailings about SAGES 2016 contact Jennifer Forbes-Nicotera at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 215.573.9729.

    SAGES 2016 is supported by the Research Institute of the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and the Center for Clinical Epidemiology and Biostatistics (CCEB) at the University of Pennsylvania.

    Funding for this conference was also made possible in part by grant R13 HG007809 from the National Human Genome Research Institute, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication Disorders. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention by trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.


    Research Trainee Orientation Sessions in June and July

    The Office of Responsible Research Training, in conjunction with the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs and Department of Pediatrics, will be offering two orientation sessions for training grant, postdoctoral, or physician fellows who will be moving into a "research trainee" status and receiving stipends for Fiscal Year 2017, beginning on July 1, 2016.

    Tuesday, June 21, 2016
    Abramson Research Center, 123-C
    1:30 to 3:00 p.m.

    Or

    Tuesday, July 12, 2016
    Abramson Research Center, Room 123-C
    1:30 to 3:00 p.m.

    The orientation sessions will provide information on the health and benefits package, financial and tax implications, and training requirements and will offer other valuable resources for new trainees.

    For more information, please contact Janet Stuart at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 267-426-7496.


    American Society for Microbiology - Upcoming Programs for Grad Students, Postdocs, and Early Career Scientists

    The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) has professional development and fellowship opportunities for graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and early career scientists coming up in 2016.

    ASM Robert D. Watkins Graduate Research Fellowship
    Application deadline: May 1, 2016

    ASM Scientific Writing and Publishing Institute
    August 12—14, 2016
    Application deadline: June 30, 2016

    ASM Kadner Grant Writing Institute
    August 12—14, 2016
    Application deadline: June 30, 2016

    ASM Turning Your Science into a Company
    October 6 – 8, 2016
    Application deadline: August 20, 2016

    View the printable schedule here

    Information about all the programs can be found at http://www.asmgap.org


    Monthly Postdoc Happy Hour – April 1 (Location Change)

    UPenn Event
    April 1, 2016
    5:30 PM - 7:30 PM
    UPenn BPP Social Committee
    Meet up with fellow CHOP/Penn Postdocs!

    The UPenn Biomedical Postdoctoral Program (BPP) Social Committee hosts a monthly happy hour event at Harvest Bar and Grill (200 South 40th Street) in West Philly. Please note the change in location for April! All CHOP and UPenn postdocs are welcome to join. Feel free to bring co-workers, friends and significant others, as long as they are 21+.

    Enjoy drink specials from 5:30 p.m.-7:30 p.m. When you arrive, tell the hostess you are with the postdoc happy hour and get a wristband to get the specials.

    For more information, visit the Biomedical Postdoctoral Council (BPC) site.


    Monthly Postdoc Lunch – April 15

    UPenn Event Hosted at ARC Cafeteria
    April 15, 2016
    12:00 PM-1:00 PM
    UPenn BPP Social Committee
    Have lunch with fellow CHOP/Penn Postdocs!

    The UPenn Biomedical Postdoctoral Program (BPP) Social Committee hosts a monthly happy lunch event at ARC cafeteria. All CHOP and UPenn postdocs are welcome to join.

    Bring your lunch and join other postdocs for a casual lunch networking opportunity.

    For more information, visit the Biomedical Postdoctoral Council (BPC) site.