Postdoctoral Research Training: Professional Development

Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center is committed to ensuring that our postdocs pursue excellent research — but it does not stop there.

Our Office of Postdoctoral Affairs and Career Services offers programs and activities to help postdoctoral researchers get the most out of their training experience, take charge of their careers, and secure future employment — whether as scientists in academia or the biotechnology industry, or as research professionals pursuing alternative career paths.

Our Career Development Program

Below are some examples of our ongoing career support activities:

  • Recurring workshops presented by professional educators on topics such as grant writing, public speaking skills, English as a second language, and science writing.
  • The Postdoc/Faculty Forum, a series of monthly roundtable discussions in which faculty members share their experiences and discuss common career challenges — such as how to prepare for a job interview, how to set up and administer a new lab, and how to balance research and family life.
  • Personal career counseling and job search support. A career development specialist offers both one-on-one sessions and small group workshops. 
  • Seminars, panel discussions, and networking sessions that highlight specific career paths, including consulting, patent law, technology transfer, and jobs in the biotechnology industry.
  • The Tri-Institutional Career Symposium, which features a full day of lectures and panel discussions about academic and non-academic career paths. The event also offers opportunities for postdocs to network with company representatives. This annual event is coordinated jointly by Memorial Sloan Kettering, Weill Cornell Medical College, and The Rockefeller University.

Mentoring

At Memorial Sloan Kettering, we are dedicated to providing the highest quality of research training to support your personal career goals. Part of this effort involves fostering an environment in which communication between you and your mentor will be open, encouraging, and supportive.

In addition to the regular meetings that take place between mentor and trainee, our faculty members are required to meet annually with each of their postdocs to discuss individual career development plans. Such meetings provide an opportunity for you and your mentor to identify and plan specific training opportunities and experiences that will help you grow professionally.

Extramural Funding Opportunities

The Office of Grants and Contracts offers extensive support to postdoctoral researchers applying for fellowships and research grants. Our grant management specialists work closely with research trainees to help identify funding opportunities, review research proposals, and submit competitive applications.

In addition, we offer grant-writing workshops and lectures to help postdocs prepare successful applications for research funding at various career stages.