Jennifer Strange

In September 2000, the National Academy of Sciences released a report on the state of postdoctoral fellowships. Among other findings, the NAS determined that postdoctoral fellows were poorly paid. They believed that the system exploited them, and many had little hope for the future.1

Much has happened since then. The National Institutes of Health raised future postdoc salary targets by as much as 10% a year over the next five years. Offices for postdoctoral affairs have cropped up in institutions around the country: Yale University created its office in July 2002, for example, and Stanford University has built a program that some consider model.2 Postdocs themselves have stepped up to put down obstacles, founding postdoc associations in their institutions and councils in their states (notably California). The National Postdoc Association established shop this past January, supported with funds from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.3


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