Symposium: Ethical and Inspiring Mentorship in STEMM
Among the many roles that scientists play, mentoring younger scientists is one which researchers are rarely trained for. In the current STEM research environment, where lack of funding is but one of the systemic issues faced by young scientists, the roles, responsibilities, and career trajectories are changing. Organizations such as Future of Research and Rescuing Biomedical Research have been formed in recent years to address systemic issues facing academic research. Others, such as the National Mentoring Research Network, have arisen to address the training needs of those who wish to remain in academia but receive no formal training in how to supervise and mentor students. Still, there are gaps in the cultural awareness and value of being an inspiring leader, promoting a positive work environment, and in having happy, mentally fit employees. Where other industries recognize these benefits, academic culture lags.
But all of these issues are intertwined, and lead to the pessimism and learned helplessness found in many young researchers regarding their careers across the nation and the world. Because system, training, and culture all intersect to provide a scientist’s well-being and productivity, Labmosphere and Future of Research are holding a conference in collaboration with UMD-College Park to discuss current mentorship practices and the way in which they could be improved upon.
This whole day conference will take place at the end of National Postdoc Appreciation week (September 21st). It will consist of three speakers with break-out sessions in between the talks, as well as a mentorship panel at the end followed by discussion and a networking reception.
Future of Research (FoR) is a nonprofit representing junior scientists, through grassroots advocacy, to promote positive systemic change to the way we do science. To achieve this, FoR stands by three pillars of engagement – advocating for increased investment in young scientists, increased transparency in the scientific enterprise, and increased connectivity between young and established scientists. We help junior scientists organize conferences to discuss how to create and sustain an optimal scientific enterprise. We then translate these promising solutions towards a reality, working with and advocating to institutions, science societies, federal agencies and senior scientists to effect change – and to ensure the voices of those who will be scientists of the future are heard.