Berkeley Lab

Newsletter archive

 BLPA Newsletter #29 – September 7th, 2017

Hello Fellow,

All our thoughts are going to our fellows and families from Texas, who experienced devastating landfalls. We also hope you didn’t melt this weekend with the record-setting temperatures in the Bay. Let’s keep fighting against climate change (the “double-C word”) through the betterment of technology, but also personal habits and communication with the public, so that these exceptional events stay exceptional.
This is newsletter #29.

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Pub night at Pappy’s – Friday, September 8th
Join us at Pappy’s (2367 Telegraph) on Friday, September 8th from 7pm for our monthly pub night and indulge a fresh beer outdoor with some warm comfort food!

Conversation with Dr. Michael Eisen (PLOS co-founder) – Monday, September 11th
If you’re interested about establishing yourself as a prominent science communicator, you can participate to the conversation event on campus on Monday, September 11th  2017 at 5:30pm in 106 Stanley.

Hoist the banner – Monday, September 18th
To start the National Postdoc Appreciation week (September, 18-22th), join us to put the banner at LBL entrance on Monday, 18th at 9am. We will take a picture!

Register for Game of Divisions! – Thursday, September 21st
During the National Postdoc Appreciation week, we are organizing on Thursday (21st) afternoon a “Game of Divisions” in which contestants will bravely present their scientific project in three minutes to the assembled crowd. Prizes will reward the knight chosen by our noble jury. We will organize a dry run the week before to practice. If you’re ready to take on the challenge, please sign up here.

National Postdoc Appreciation Week Party – Thursday, September  21st
After the “Game of Divisions” battle, food and beverages will be served at the Cafeteria. Please sign in here if you want to feast and toast with your peers.

Networking/Socializing Picnic at Dolores Park – Saturday, September 23rd
To finish the NPAW, we invite you to a picnic at Dolores Park on Saturday 23rd from 3 to 6pm. We co-organize this event with the postdocs associations from UCSF and Stanford. It would be a great occasion to network with postdocs from the Bay Area and share experiences.

Career Support group (CSG) Meetup – Saturday September 23rd
CSG is a grass-root, international organization gathering PhD people working inside and outside academia. Join for a coffee at Olympus Caffe & Bakery at Mountain View at 11 am and enjoy peer-to-peer conversations and sharing first-hand experiences. For more information: louise.lassalle@gmail.com

Berkeley Hills hike – Sunday, September 24th
You have probably already know that our lab is named after Physicist, Ernest O. Lawrence. Did you know that he also lived in Berkeley and his once home still stands on the Berkeley hill? Yes, here is the address. 🙂 Not only him, many scientists, architects, artists and other influential people had once chose Berkeley as their home, and made their impacts here. In this hike, we will explore the architecture and history of the Berkeley hill. We will walk through many beautiful public paths, steps and walkways. And we will certainly stop by Ernest Lawrence’s house. The entire hike will be about 7-8 miles with a lot of climbings. If interested, please sign up here.

Tip of the Bay
The Bay Area has many nice concert venues, and the fall program is pretty packed with good stuff! In Berkeley, the main venues are the Greek Theatre and UC Theatre. Further in Oakland, there’s the Fox Theatre. In San Francisco, there’s The Fillmore, a legendary venue, the Independent and the Warfield. If you’re a late owl, Mezzanine, 1015 Folsom and Public Works also often have nice concerts until the break of dawn.

Quote of the Week
“I have come to believe that the whole world is an enigma, a harmless enigma that is made terrible by our own mad attempt to interpret it as though it had an underlying truth.” – Umberto Eco

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Stay safe,
BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

 

BLPA Newsletter # 28 – August 28th, 2017

Hello fellow,

That was a very fine eclipse, wasn’t it ?
We remind the sleepy heads that next weekend (Sept 2-4) will be Labor Day weekend, and contrary to what the name suggests, you are not meant to work, but instead indulge in a trip and enjoy the many wonders of California!
This is newsletter #28.

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Football game Cal and Ole Miss from Mississippi University – September 16th
Ole Miss will come for the first time in Berkeley. We have a group price of 66 $ ticket by person. Feel free to invite family and none postdocs friends. Fill in the form if you are interested in joining.

National Postdoc Appreciation Week – September 18-22
In addition to the divisions/areas events on that week, we are organizing a Lab-wide event   on Thursday, September 21st to celebrate all the postdocs at the Lab:

  • There will be a Game of the Divisions in which contestants will bravely present their scientific project in three minutes to the assembled crowd. Prizes will reward the knight chosen by our noble jury. If you’re ready to take on the challenge, please sign up here.
  • After the battle, food and beverages will be served. Please sign in here if you want to feast and toast with your peers.

Quantum Computing
Shane Caldwell from Rigetti Computing gave a talk on Quantum Computing on Thursday. The video of the talk is available here; you can try tinkering with qubits using Forest — the company is hiring, don’t forget to contact them!

Start-up job – technical co-founder
Angilytics is a medical device startup based at Berkeley Skydeck, and we are developing the world’s first clinically accurate, wearable blood pressure monitor in a wrist watch to help doctors better control cardiovascular diseases. We are looking for a technical cofounder with strong algorithm development experience to facilitate prototyping and validation. Key skills: processing bio signals, building filters, machine learning, firmware, electrical engineering, and product design. If interested, please contact Xiaoding at xzhuo@angilytics.com for details.

Tip of the Bay
Burning Man is a yearly gathering of life enthusiasts in Black Rock City, NV, a full week before Labor day. The participants form a community of 70,000, where they celebrate arts and crafts and experiment with radical inclusion. The event is basically sold out since January, but global search on Facebook usually works well, and joining a camp is usually a smart move.

Quote of the week
How are you going to teach logic in a world where everybody talks about the sun setting, when it’s really the horizon rising? — Cal Craig, quoted in Howard Eves, Mathematical Circles Revisited, 1971

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Best regards,
BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc 
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

 

BLPA Newsletter #27 – August 9th, 2017

Hello fellow,

We hope you’re enjoying the summer, with a great sun, weathered from the news!
We are working with the Lab to organize events in all divisions for the National Postdoc Appreciation week (Sept 18-22); please reach out to us (postdoc@lbl.gov) if you want something special to happen in your own division (pizza lunch, ice-cream break, fireworks…)

This is newsletter #27.

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Pub night – August 11th
Come and join us at Beta Lounge (2129 Durant) on Friday August 11th, 2017 from 6pm for our monthly pub night! There are many good beers on tap (food served here), to share a conversation about the latest plasmids, current limitations of the standard model, or simply your cool week-end plans.

Postdoc avocado party – August 17th
Please join us on Thursday, August 17th at 4pm on the cafeteria patio, for some guacamole extravaganza! We cannot buy houses, but we sure can have avocado toasts and spend good time with our fellow postdocs, who often have the rare advantage of enjoying what they do for a living!

Postdoc hike – August 19th
We are organizing a trip to Muir Woods National Forest on Saturday August 19th, 2017. It’s an easy flat hike through a small forest among the majestic Redwood trees. We will leave Berkeley at 8am in the morning. Please register here.

Postdoc Union BBQ with UC Berkeley on Saturday, August 26th
Postdoc union is inviting all postdoc at LBL with family and friends to an annual BBQ on Saturday, August 26th, 4:30 – 8:00pm in Live Oak Park in North Berkeley. Food provided. For the registration: http://bit.ly/2fc7od1

Football game Cal and Ole Miss from Mississippi University, September 16th at 7:30pm
Ole Miss will come for the first time in Berkeley. We can get a group price of 45 $ if we gathered 20+ people. Feel free to invite family and none postdocs friends. Fill in the form if you are interested in joining.

Save the week, National Postdoc Appreciation Week is coming soon (September 18-22)
On Thursday September 21st, we will have a Lab-wide event to celebrate the postdocs at LBL.
We are working with the Lab to organize events in all divisions, reach out to us (postdoc@lbl.gov) if you want something special to happen in your own division (pizza lunch, ice-cream break, fireworks…).

Tip of the the Bay
If you are bored of watching Netflix or Game of Thrones all by yourself eating microwaved ramen, the Bay area has many options to share the fun! The New Parkway (474 24th St, Oakland) has a selection of TV series and cult movies that you watch with food and drinks. Also, do not miss out the Pacific Film Archive (2155 Center st) where you can re-discover movie masterpieces in a proper setting (program).

Quote of the week

“Some men see things as they are and ask why. Others dream things that never were and ask why not.” – George Bernard Shaw

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Best regards,
BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

 

 BLPA Newsletter #26 – July 6th, 2017

Hello fellow,

We hope you had a great week-end and enjoyed the celebration for the 4th of July!
If you’ve been at the lab for more than a year, we remind you that you have to use all your vacation days before October 1st 2017, as you will not be able to carry them over. If you cannot plan enough vacations by then, don’t panic as you will get 24 new days to use for the next fiscal year. Otherwise, you can pair your all-state roadtrip with the reading of the seminal papers of the United States of America — the declaration of independence, the constitution and the bill of rights!

This is newsletter #26.

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BLPA fundraising
Berkeley Lab postdocs running the San Francisco marathon are organizing a fundraiser.
You can join the team or contribute here. Please let your colleagues, your supervisor and your friends know about it! The collected funds will help us organize mixer events because we receive limited support from the Lab. Food and drinks are unallowable on DOE funds.

Hike the Huckleberry Botanic Regional preserve – July 9th
We are organizing a hike on Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve on July 9th, 2017 — weather permitting. The hike is only 1.7 miles, but can be extended to the nearby Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve for another 2.6 miles. Please register here.

Postdoc Orientation – July 12th
The next postdoc orientation will be on July 12th, 2017, at 9 am in the Auditorium of building 50. It is open to all postdocs across the lab. The presentation will include information about available resources at the lab, research and career development, and social events organized by BLPA and the Union for Postdocs.

How to accomplish more by doing less – July 12th
If you’re interested about learning “How to accomplish more by doing less”, you can register to the event on campus on Wednesday, July 12th 2017 at 5:30pm ($20). Registration is here

Pub night – July 14th
The next pub night will be at the Albatross (1822 San Pablo Ave) on July 14th, from 6pm. It is the oldest pub in Berkeley, and you can play dart, pool or Connect-4 while enjoying a great list of beers on draft.

Write a short article for the Berkeley Science Review
We are looking for a few writers for labscopes, which are short (250-word) descriptions of a research finding or focus from UC Berkeley accompanied by an engaging image. Please email sciencereview@gmail.com if you’re interested—they’re happy to suggest ideas if you’re unsure what to write about.

Tip of the bay
Summer commands decent refreshments, and the best place to go and get a Mai Tai is certainly the place where is was invented, Trader’s Vic in Emeryville. No wonder why Ernest Lawrence and Robert Oppenheimer elected this place to enjoy the sunset over the bay while discussing ways to split atoms!

Quote of the week
“Science is the only news. When you scan through a newspaper or a magazine, all the human interest stuff is the same old he-said-she-said, the politics and the economics the same sorry cyclic dramas, … even the technology is predictable if you know the science. Human nature doesn’t change much; science does, and the change accrues, altering the world irreversibly” – Steward Brand

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Best regards,

BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

 

BLPA Newsletter #25 – June  15th, 2017

Hello fellow

We are happy to announce that the lab now has a Postdoc Scholar Program Manager, Meg Rodriguez.
She can be contacted at extension x6294 and emailed at mmrodriguez@lbl.gov.
We will work with her to bring you career-development themed events — at long last!

This is newsletter #25.

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forum@MSD: Graphene – June 21st

The next forum@MSD will be presented by Alex Zettl, introducing the research on graphene lead by postdocs from the lab. The event will be held on Wednesday, June 21st at 3pm in building 66 Auditorium, and it is open to all postdocs curious about how the science is done in other fields and learn new experimental approaches.

Bowling night – June 21st

The bowling night is back! Let’s meet at Albany Bowl (540 San Pablo Ave; $12) on Wednesday June 21st at 8pm to hone your high energy physics skills and break the current record (179).

Postdoc lunch – June 27th

Come and join us for lunch at the cafeteria on June 27th, 2017 at 11:40am, to meet the board of the association, ask questions about the life as a postdoc and/or learn how you can help the community of young researchers at the lab!

Hike the Huckleberry Botanic Regional preserve – July 9th

We are organizing a hike on Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve on July 9th, 2017 — weather permitting. The hike is only 1.7 miles. but can be extended to the nearby Sibley Volcanic Regional Preserve for another 2.6 miles. Please register here.

Insight Data science

The Insight Data Science program is now accepting applications for Fall 2017 Insight Fellowships. This 7 week, full-time, post-graduate training Fellowship is geared toward full-time industry employment with mentorship from leading industry data scientists, data engineers, and AI experts. The fellowship is open to permanent residents only; application deadline is June 26th. More information here.

German Academic Exchange service (DAAD) for postdocs in materials sciences and nanotechnology

The German Academic Exchange service (DAAD,  www.daad.de) offers a “Postdoctoral Researchers’ Networking Tour” for postdocs from materials sciences and nanotechnology who are interested in job opportunities in Germany (academic and non-academic).

They offer a practice orientated and diverse program to suit the requirements of the participants; coverage of program related costs in Germany (accommodation, domestic travel, most meals) and a lump sum travel allowance if such costs are not borne by a third party. This will also be provided if the stay is extended by up to five working days in order to allow for additional professional networking.

The dates of the tour are 25.09.2017 – 30.09.2017, the application deadline is July 17, 2017, 12:00 noon CET. Detailed information is available at: www.daad.de/postdocnet

Quote of the week

Consistency is the last refuge of the unimaginative.

– Oscar Wilde

Tip of the bay

If you live in Berkeley, don’t miss out on experiences that are all about mindfulness. Open your appetite with a yoga session at Yoga to the people (64, Shattuck; free, donation suggested) You can get a sandwich at Butcher’s son (1941 University ave), where the meat is substituted by tasty vegan alternatives, and later on get a drink at Melo Melo (1701 University ave) and experience the soothing effects of the kava root.

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Peace, love and unity,
BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

BLPA Newsletter #24 – May 18th, 2017

Hello fellows,

We hope you’re doing well, and that you have found proper apparel for Bay to breakers this Sunday. Please note that blonde toupet and spicer bush styles have already been taken!
And if you don’t travel for Memorial day (May 29), check out the Ship Show, where you can watch the Wu-Tang Clan while sipping a beer aboard an aircraft carrier (!!) in Alameda

This is newsletter #24.

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Join the board of the Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association

The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association is looking for new members! If you are interested in joining the board, please let us know — there are many roles available (webmaster, orientation organizer, alumni association). We kindly remind you that the association is separate from the union.

Brunch with INSPIRE – May 21st (10 am)

We are organizing, together with INSPIRE and Partners@Berkeley, the Haas Partners Club, a welcome brunch at the Thai Temple “Wat Mongkolratanaram” (1911 Russell St, Berkeley) on Sunday, May 21st, 2017 10am-1pm. Come and join us in this unique setting, where you can make friends with other spouses and partners. Kids and significant others are of course welcome.

Series X with Robert Birgenau – May 22nd

Series X returns on May 22nd, 2017 at 11am in the Auditorium of building 50. Our speaker will be Robert Birgenau, a former Chancellor of UC Berkeley and renown physicist, who will talk about his career trajectory and share his advice to young scientists.

Hike on Mt Tamalpais – June 4th

We’re organizing a hike on Mt Tamalpais (Marin county) to enjoy beautiful views of the city and the Pacific Ocean. The hike will be ~3h long, and we’ll stop by to get stacks of pancakes at West Point Inn. It’s an hour from Berkeley, and we’ll arrange transportation for those who need it. Please register here.

Hello tomorrow

The Hello Tomorrow Challenge is the world’s most exclusive deep-tech competition. As such, we provide projects and startups with connections, visibility, and financial rewards. The application is here (deadline June 1st; beware, the application is lengthy). More information here.

Tip of the bay

The summer in the Bay might be foggy, but there are a lot of great festivals around: Bottle Rock (Napa Valley, May 26-28), Burger Boogaloo (Oakland, June 1-2), Outside Lands (SF, August 11-13), Enchanted forest (Mendocino, June 9-11), and the Treasure Island Music festival (October — if it happens.) If you’re into camping, check out camp grounded (May 19-22, 26-28) camp tipsy (June 15-18), and sunset campout (July 21-23).

Quote of the week

“The visionary lies to himself, the liar only to others.”

– Friedrich Nietzsche

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Best regards,
BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

 

BLPA Newsletter #23 – May 2nd, 2017

Hello fellows,

We hope you’re enjoying the warm weather and the latest announcements that science funding will remain at reasonable levels, at least until the end of the fiscal year.

This is newsletter #23.

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Postdoc orientation – May 3rd

The next postdoc orientation is happening this Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017 at 9am in building 50 (Auditorium). Come learn more about the lab, including the postdoc association, IT, internal communication, safety, and educational opportunities!

Last call: Berkeley Symphony concert REMEMBRANCE – May 4th

Come and enjoy the next Berkeley Symphony concert “Program IV: REMEMBRANCE” on May 4, 2017, with a special fare for LBNL postdocs and students. Tickets ($15) for side and rear orchestra seats can be purchased on the Berkeley Symphony website using the code LABGRAD15. For questions and help, call 510-841-2800 x1.

Pub night – May 5th

Next pub night will be at Cornerstone (2367 Shattuck Ave), on Friday, May 5th, 6 pm to 8 pm. A new place for “craft beer and craft music” with a nice patio to enjoy the beautiful weather and a room for entertainment with ping pong tables, corn hole boards and a giant collection of Jenga blocks.

BLIC – May 9th

For those of you interested in hearing stories of entrepreneurs from the trench, the Berkeley Lab Innovation Corps is organizing an event with Alphabet Energy’s Adam Lorimer next Tuesday, May 9th 12:15-1:15pm in Pers Hall.

Potluck lunch – May 10th

Bring your own lunch Wednesday next week at 12pm on the terrace of building 15 to share the moment with fellow postdocs and start informal conversations ranging from quantum computing to microbiology!

Brunch with INSPIRE – May 21st 10am-1 pm

Join us for a unique Berkeley experience: a welcome brunch at the Thai Temple “Wat Mongkolratanaram” (1911 Russell St, Berkeley) on May 21st, 10am-1pm This event is co-organized by 4 organizations: INSPIRE, Partners@Berkeley, the Haas Partners Club and the LBNL Postdoc Association. Kids and significant others are welcome!

Call for runners

If you participate to Bay to Breakers, the SF marathon or any other races in the Bay Area in the  upcoming months, please let us know if you’re willing to support and raise funds for the Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association.

Tip of the bay

Do you want to quench your thirst for science after the day is over? The Exploratorium (San Francisco) organizes a weekly After Dark event on Thursdays (6-10pm, $15) for adults only (18+), and the Chabot Space Center (Oakland) hosts First Fridays (6-10pm, $5) for families to bring their kids and explore the universe.

Quote of the week

“Science, my lad, is made up of mistakes, but they are mistakes which it is useful to make, because they lead little by little to the truth.”

– Jules Verne

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Best regards,
BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

 

BLPA Newsletter #22 – April 11th, 2017

Hello fellow,

This is Earth month, and the Lab has a long tradition of spearheading the race against climate change. We encourage you to read the Art of Energy Efficiency, where you’ll learn about the scientific ingenuity of the late Art Rosenfeld who helped save hundreds of billions of dollars by shaping energy policy, long before lab scientists shared a Nobel prize for its involvement with IPCC and Steve Chu became secretary of Energy—may you’ll be the next in line!

This is newsletter #22.

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Entrepreneurship for foreign nationals – April 14

Starting a company from a postdoc position when you are non-US citizen is complicated, but, fortunately, there are alternatives if you’re not yet a green card holder. Come and join us for our event on Friday, April 14th, 2017 at 4pm in the Auditorium of building 66. Please register here.

Series X: Alexis Madrigal – April 17

Our first Series X talk by a non-academic speaker will feature Alexis Madrigal, former editor at The Atlantic and Wired, and also the author of a book on the political history of sustainable energy: “Powering the dream”. The event will be on Monday April 17th, 2017 in Auditorium of building 50. It will start at 11am—sharp!

March for Science – April 22

We are supporting the national March for Science on Saturday, April 22nd, with an event in San Francisco (11am, Justin Herman plaza, near Embarcadero.) The National Postdoc Association recommends foreign nationals to be careful and avoid any non-peaceful protest, should there be any.

Hike for science on Angel Island – April 23

We are organizing our first hike this year on Angel Island to celebrate the spirit of discovery and trailblazing that is at the core of science. Weather permitting, we’ll take the ferry departing Tiburon at 10am, and we’re organizing carpool to get there; please sign up here.

Hiring new board members

The postdoc association is always looking for new, motivated board members to bring the Lab population new events and opportunities. If you are interested in joining the association, please send us an email at postdoc@lbl.gov.

Berkeley Symphony concert REMEMBRANCE, May 4th

Come and enjoy the next Berkeley Symphony concert “Program IV: REMEMBRANCE” on May 4, 2017, with a special fare for LBNL postdocs and students. Tickets ($15) for Side and Rear Orchestra seats can be purchased on the Berkeley Symphony website using the code LABGRAD15. For questions and help, call 510-841-2800 x1.

Tip of the bay

April brings the wind, and the Cal Sailing Club offers a great opportunity to discover the Bay from the water, with monthly open-house and fast-track programs to learn how to sail on your own (next is May 1-5, make sure you pay them a visit first!). Free sailing and windsurf lessons for $99 3-months membership, probably the best deal you’ll ever find.

Quote of the week

“Science is facts; just as houses are made of stones, so is science made of facts; but a pile of stones is not a house and a collection of facts is not necessarily science.” – Henri Poincare

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Best regards,
BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

 

BLPA Newsletter #21 – March 30th, 2017

Hello fellows,

Last week, we were five postdocs of the association to represent the lab at the National Postdoc Association Annual Meeting held in San Francisco. We established contacts with postdoctoral offices from other institutions, and got a lot of inspiration for events that we can organize for you!

This is newsletter #21.

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Career Seminar on Social Media, April 3rd

The next career seminar will focus on “How to use social media to advance your research career”, and it will be presented by Catharine Adams on Monday, April 3, 2017, at 11am in the Auditorium of building 50. Come and learn how you can stick out from the crowd and get that tenure-track position you want so much. The event will be streamed live on facebook… of course!

Orientation, April 5th

The next postdoc orientation will be on April 5, 2017, at 9 am in the Auditorium of building 50. It is open to all postdocs across the lab. Presentation will include information about available resources at the lab, research and career development, and social events organized by BLPA and the Union for Postdocs.

Pub Night at Townie, April 7th

Next pub night will be at Townie (1799 University Ave), on Friday, April 7, 5:30 pm to 8 pm. Come and join us to enjoy fresh beers and fine meals, or grab some delicious food to go on your way home in one of the numerous restaurants around.

Forum@MSD on Quantum Computing, April 12th

The upcoming forum@MSD will be held on Wednesday April 12, 2017, at 1pm in the Auditorium of building 66. The topic, this time, will be ‘Quantum Computing’, with an introduction by Irfan Siddiqi and postdocs presenting the nuts and bolts of their research. The event is targeted at MSD postdocs, but researchers from all divisions are encouraged to join.

Entrepreneurship for foreign nationals, April 14th

You have a great idea, but you don’t have a green card and you don’t know how to get started? The non-profit Unshackled is here to help, and there will be a presentation on “Entrepreneurship for Foreign Nationals and Researchers” by CEO Manan Mehta on April 14, 2017, at 4 pm (location TBD). Please register here.

I-Corps

The regional I-Corps program is a week-long, evening-only training designed to give you an occasion to find a market for your research if you are interested in testing the water before the big jump—like Berkeley Lab company Sepion did before you. The deadline for the April 17-24 session at the Haas School of Business is April 3; applications are here.

Save the date: Berkeley Symphony concert REMEMBRANCE, May 4th

Come and enjoy the next Berkeley Symphony concert “Program IV: REMEMBRANCE” on May 4, 2017, with a special fare for LBNL postdocs and students. Tickets ($15) for Side and Rear Orchestra seats can be purchased on the Berkeley Symphony website using the code LABGRAD15. For questions and help, call 510-841-2800 x1.

Tip of the bay

Starting next week, there is the SF International Film Festival (April 5-19), which is a great occasion to go and see movies from all over the world. The festival happens at multiple locations in the Bay Area, including the Pacific Film Archive in Berkeley (BAMPFA).

Quote of the week

“Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.”  – Arthur C. Clarke

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Best regards,

BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

 

BLPA Newsletter #20 – March 9th, 2017

Hello fellows,

A year ago, a bunch of postdocs created the Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association in order to address the crucial lack of structure for postdocs, with no occasions to meet their peers, no help provided for their career, or simply with their first steps at the lab.

We would like to thank all the postdocs who helped us, and we would be very happy to hear about what you would like to see in the future. Please drop us a message here!

This is newsletter #20.

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Pub night at Pappy’s – March 10th

Come and join us at Pappy’s (2367 Telegraph Ave) to celebrate the first anniversary of the postdoc association this Friday March 10th, 2017 at 5:30pm, to meet other postdocs, and tell us what you think about our events!

Career seminar #5 : “How to use social media to advance your research career” – April 3rd

Catharine Adams will present “How to use social media to advance your research career” on Monday April 3rd, 2017 in building 50 Auditorium.

Research Bites – Cross-divisional postdoc mixer for lunch

We are exploring the idea of leveraging lunch time to promote cross-divisional discussions between postdocs, so that we can learn about what’s hot in other areas, but also learn how to explain our science to someone from other fields of research. If you’re interested, please let us know here!

Short survey on IT

IT services would like to conduct a short survey on the needs of postdocs, in order to improve their service performance. Please fill out the survey: General IT services and support at LBNL. Better IT services will benefit all postdocs!

Mailing list problem fixed

The mailing list problem that we encountered in the past few days is now fixed; there was an issue with IT services not aware of the various mailing lists available at the Lab. You can now address your questions and comments to postdoc@lbl.gov, and it will be answered by someone from the association.

Save the date: Berkeley Symphony concert REMEMBRANCE, May 4th

Come and enjoy the next Berkeley Symphony concert “Program IV: REMEMBRANCE” on May 4th with a special fare for LBNL postdocs and students. Tickets ($15) for Side and Rear Orchestra seats can be purchased on the Berkeley Symphony website using the code LABGRAD15. For questions and help, call 510-841-2800 x1.

Express bike shuttle

In case you are not aware already, there’s a new express shuttle for bikes only, which runs every 30 minutes from 8am to 9:30am. It is much faster than the usual shuttle, drops you off on top of the hill for an amazing downhill ride, and has the great advantage to run at fixed hours. Plus, it’s a great occasion to meet other postdocs who like bikes. More information here.

Bike exchange #2

Talking of bikes, if you would like to buy a bike from someone at the Lab, or if you have an old bike you would like to give or sell (within three months), or simply borrow one, please go to this page.

Tip of the Bay

With the spring coming up, there are now plenty of opportunities for great hikes in Northern California. Among the most iconic routes is the day-long Half-Dome hike in Yosemite National Park. It is so popular that there’s an annual lottery held in March to get a day-hike permit (apply here). Since the application is valid for up to six permits, feel free to let us know if you enter the lottery and win — we’ll try to pair you with other postdoc hikers!

Quote of the week

Perhaps the workings of defiance stir

Within me, -or perhaps of cold despair,

Brought on when ills habitually recur, –

Perhaps a kinder clime, or purer air,

(For even to this may change of soul refer,

And with light armour we may learn to bear,)

Have taught me a strange quiet, which was not

The chief companion of a calmer lot.

– Lord Byron

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Yee-hikes!

BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

BLPA Newsletter #19 – February 22nd, 2017

Hello fellows,

We hope that you were able to get away for President’s day weekend, and retreat from fake news and climate change. As we are teaming up with the union to provide you with nice events, we would like to know what your needs are, and we urge you to fill out the survey, if you haven’t already! This will benefit you, and many future cohorts of postdocs.

This is newsletter #19.

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Career Development survey

This year, we will be able to provide you with many more career development opportunities, thanks to the new postdoc contract. In order to deliver the most relevant training to you, please answer the short survey conducted by UAW Local 5810 LBL.

Series X: Marjorie Shapiro – February 27th

Our next Series X seminar, where accomplished scientists talk about their personal research experience and share exclusive insights, will feature Marjorie Shapiro.  She is a professor at UC Berkeley and part of the ATLAS collaboration.  The seminar will take place on Monday, February 27th (exact time and location will be communicated later.)

Career seminar #4: Careers in data science – March 9th

A panel discussion with four former postdocs from the Lab who joined the data science industry through the Insight Data Science Program will be organized on Thursday, March 9th, 2017, at 6pm in the Auditorium of building 50. Food and refreshments will be served after the event. Please register here.

Pub night at Pappy’s – March 10th

Come and join us at Pappy’s (2367 Telegraph Ave) to celebrate the first anniversary of the postdoc association on Friday March 10th, 2017 at 5:30pm, to meet other cool postdocs and tell us what you think about our events !

Change in social media accounts

In order to comply with governmental guidelines regarding the use of Berkeley Lab on social media, we had to change the names of our social media accounts. Our twitter handle is now @BerkeleyPostdoc and the Facebook page is now fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc. If you were already following us, no change is required: the subscription is being carried over.

March for Science – April 22nd

Some Lab postdocs will be part of the national March for Science that will happen on April 22nd.  On that day, researchers from across the country will share their concerns with science being instrumentalized. Feel free to share your social media handles (ping us at @BerkeleyPostdoc) if you’re taking part in that action.

Tip of the Bay

The current weather is a good opportunity to discover the museums in the area, and this season is particularly rich in great exhibitions! At the Berkeley Art Museum, there’s the Hippie Modernism exhibition on display. On the rainier side of the bay, DeYoung Museum has the Frank Stella retrospective running until the end of this week (not to be missed!), while the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art has an interesting exhibition featuring Berkeley darling Diebenkorn and Matisse coming up, that you can pair with Diane Arbus’. Legion of Honor welcomes Monet. The Contemporary Jewish Museum and the Asian Art Museum are also great places to visit at any given time!

Quote of the Week

Art is science made clear.

– Jean Cocteau

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Stay dry,
BLPA – Berkeley Postdocs

postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkeleyPostdoc
LinkedIn //  fb.com/BerkeleyPostdoc

BLPA Newsletter #18 – February 3rd, 2017

Hello fellows,

We hope that no one got hurt during the events last Wednesday.

You probably have noticed a slowdown of our seminar events; this is because we are working closely together with both lab management and the union so that you’ll soon have access to great career development workshops !

This is newsletter #18.

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Executive orders and immigration

If you are a foreign national with visa intending to go on international travel soon, make sure you are following the new Lab guidelines. Two of the most important implications are (i) that the waiting times for a visa interview appointment will likely increase dramatically, and (ii) that ALL visa renewal applicants have to go through a in-person interview. Make sure all your friends know.

Orientation – February 8

The next postdoc orientation will be on February 8, 2017 at 9 pm in the Auditorium of building 50. It is open to all postdocs across the lab.

Pub night at Berkeley Social Club – February 10

The upcoming pub night will be at the Berkeley Social Club (2050 University Ave) on Friday, February 10, 2017, from 5:30 pm to 8 pm. It’s a good occasion to meet new people, and taste delicious Korean food.

Berkeley Lab Innovation Corps – February 10

The next BLIC seminar with speaker Steve Visco (from the battery company Polyplus) will be held next Friday, February 10, at 12:15 pm in Perseverance Hall. Come and learn about the evolution of his startup since he left the Lab, and meet other researchers with similar interest for entrepreneurship!

Authorea free trial

The online collaborative scientific platform is offering 3-months free premium access for to Berkeley Lab postdocs. To do so, please register here, using your lbl.gov email address. You will get unlimited private article, and you can start inviting your colleagues to start writing down your latest research.

Insight Data Science

Insight Data science is now accepting applications! This is a wildly successful 7-week bridge between postdoc and data science started by a fellow alumni. Learn more here.

Inside the ALS

The tour of inside the ALS has proven to be very popular, and we have managed to increase the number of visits! Please register here if you want to discover what’s inside our beloved 200m-synchrotron!

Volunteer opportunities for education programs

LBL WD&E is seeking volunteers to participate in the K-16 Education Programs (BLAZES, BLEND, BLISS) and offers training workshops. More information here.

Tip of the Bay

Even during the winter, Berkeley runs on flower power! Magnolias are blooming everywhere, and you should definitely indulge yourself into a walk in the streets (especially between University and Cedar, East of San Pablo.) On the West Bay also : San Francisco Botanical Garden has a great collection on display.

Quote of the week

“People demand freedom of speech as a compensation for the freedom of thought which they seldom use.”  – Soren Kierkegaard

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Stay safe,

The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #17 – January 19th, 2016

Hello fellows,

We hope you had a great time during the break, and would like to wish you a happy new year!

2017 is a prime number, and though we might have differences in opinions, we should keep in mind that science is already a pretty high lowest common denominator.

This is newsletter #17 (also prime!)

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Pub night – Friday, January 20th

We’ll be meeting at Albatross (1822 San Pablo Ave) on Friday Jan 20th, starting 5:30pm through 9pm. It is inauguration day, and while some will celebrate, other will probably want to drink it away in the oldest pub of Berkeley (there are pool tables, darts and popcorns).

Authorea – Wednesday January 25th

Alberto Pepe from Harvard will be presenting the online scientific editing platform Authorea on Wednesday, Jan 25th at 11am in Aud50. Come and learn how you can improve collaborative editing. Bring your laptop!

Inside the Advanced Light Source – Thursday 26th

The Advanced Light Source is dark for three months, and we’ll have an occasion to visit the inside of the synchrotron — very cool! The first visit will be on Thursday, Jan 26th at 4pm. Please sign up here.

Berkeley Symphony – Thursday 26th

Come and enjoy the next Berkeley Symphony concert “Program III: Relevance” on January 26th, 8pm with a special fare for LBNL postdocs and students. Tickets ($15) for Side and Rear Orchestra seats can be purchased on the Berkeley Symphony website using the code LABGRAD15. For questions and help, call 510-841-2800 x1.

Hearts of GOLD

The goal of the Hearts of GOLD program (GEO Opportunities for Leadership in Diversity) is to help leaders in geosciences become champions for diversity, and they are looking for nominees to attend a two-day workshop in Colorado Springs on July 24-25, 2017 (nomination form here). All travel and accommodations will be covered for selected participants. Self-nominations/applications are welcome!

Applied material

If you are interested in visiting the company Applied Materials in Sunnyvale on January 31st, please sign up here (this is not organized by BLPA or LBL).

Tip of the Bay

Few of you might have noticed, but just at the bottom of the hill resides the Nyingma institute, a Tibetan meditation institute, where you can find refuge from the world and from the rain. It’s a good way to start the day with mindfulness, or get rid of your pervasive thoughts on Weyl fermions.

Quote of the week

“It is no good to try to stop knowledge from going forward. Ignorance is never better than knowledge.”

– Enrico Fermi

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Best wishes,
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #16 – December 14th, 2016

Hello Fellows,

We’re about to going into hibernation mode for the rest of the year, and we hope you’ll enjoy a great winter holiday with your friends or your loved ones! Next year is full of … promises? Rest assured we’ll be here to help you and enjoy science as a postdoc at Berkeley Lab!
This is newsletter #16.

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Interest for language lessons

We are gauging the interest of the international postdoc population for language lessons. Please answer the short survey here if you (and/or your partner) are interested in attending English language classes.

Open Access material

Following the event last week, we have compiled resources on Open Access. Make sure your papers contain proper acknowledgements, and the pre-print is submitted to publications.lbl.gov (required!) for open-access. Go here to learn more.

Collecting gifts for the Oakland Children Hospital

Kids in hospitals are in dire need of gifts (a deck of cards or a set of pencils already brings joy to the room), and we are now collecting gifts for the benefit of the UCSF Benioff Children’s hospital. If you want to contribute, you can drop off your gift near the holiday tree at the entrance of the cafeteria (here’s a list of recommended donations).

Tip of the Bay

If you missed last week’s Ice skating session, don’t be too sad! San Francisco has a vibrant roller skating community (Golden Gate Park & 6th Avenue on Sunday afternoon (video), to Derby roller in the summer). The best way to try it out is certainly the roller disco at the  Church of Eight Wheels on Friday and Saturday nights (554 Fillmore, San Francisco), which will keep you groovy for the rest of the weekend!

Quote of the week

If knowledge can create problems, it is not through ignorance that we can solve them.

– Isaac Asimov

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Happy holiday !
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #15 – November 23rd, 2016

Hello Fellows,

For many, 2016 has been a pretty difficult year. The oceans are rising, David Bowie, Prince and Susan Lindquist passed away, to say the least. Nevertheless, this weekend is an occasion to rejoice ! For those who will visit family, take the time to explain your science to relatives, for those spending the holiday in Tahoe with friends, enjoy the snow while it last; all others, we wish you an excellent Thanksgiving.

This is newsletter #15.

Series X – November 28th

BLPA Series X will celebrate the return of Paul Alivisatos at the lab ! Please join us on November 28th at 12:15pm in Aud50 to ask everything you ever wanted to know on how to build a successful career in science.

Open Access – December 1st

We are organizing an Open Access seminar on December 1st at 11am, in Aud50 to discuss open access in scientific publishing and the lab policy concerning acknowledgement and manuscript availability. In times where metrics are essential to stay afloat, don’t miss this information !

The talk will be open to all scientists at the lab, don’t forget to invite your PI!

Holiday on Ice – December 6th

On the evening of December 6th, we will go to the Oakland Ice Center (519 18th St, Oakland, accessible by BART) around 7pm, so that you can study phase transitions under your blades and get ready for the winter!

Berkeley Symphony – December 8th

Come and enjoy the next Berkeley Symphony concert Program II: Reverence on December 8th, 8pm with a special fare for LBNL postdocs and students. Tickets (15$) for Side and Rear Orchestra seats can be purchased on the Berkeley Symphony website using the code LABGRAD15. For questions and help call 510-841-2800 x1.

Tip of the Bay

Theater season has started at Berkeley Rep! The Rep, located in downtown Berkeley (2025 Addison), has an excellent selection of plays. Tickets are half-price if you are below 30, making it fairly affordable and definitely something to try out in the long winter nights! Other great local theatre includes Aurora, Shotgun players (Ashby), CalShakes (Orinda) and ACT (San Francisco)

Quote of the week

“A leader is best
When people barely know he exists
Of a good leader, who talks little,
When his work is done, his aim fulfilled,
They will say, “We did this ourselves.”  – Lao Tzu

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Happy thanksgiving !
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

BLPA Newsletter #14 – November 10th, 2016

Hello Fellows,

The election cycle is over, hooray! We, The People have spoken, and though the policy and the character of the president-elect statistically suits only half the population, we as scientists must make sure sensible decisions are made, and for that, we need to congregate and voice up our desire for rationality.

This is newsletter #14.

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Bowling Night at Albany Bowl – November 16th.

We’re organizing a Bowling competition at Albany Bowl (540 San Pablo Ave, Albany) on November 16th. Please join us and funnel your anger (take that, rejected paper!)

BLPA career seminar #3  : Publishing Scientific Research and How to Write High-Impact Scientific Papers – November 18th

John Uhlrich, editor-in-chief at Energy Technology, will give a talk on November 18th at 11am in Aud50. Please join us and learn.

Berkeley Half-Marathon fundraising – November 20th

We are running the Berkeley Marathon for you ! We are doing a fundraiser so that we can provide you coffee, food and drinks during our events and all be merry together. If you’re running too, please join the BLPA team! Direct, tax-exempt donations can be made through the Berkeley Lab Foundation. Consider letting your PI know his/her support is important !

Visit from UC Berkeley postdocs – November 21st

A group of postdocs from UC Berkeley will come on November 21st at 5pm. They will be given a tour of the ALS; light refreshments will be served afterwards. Please join the group and help build bridges!

Berkeley Symphony – December 8th

Come and enjoy the next Berkeley Symphony concert Program II: Reverence on December 8th, 8pm with a special fare for LBNL postdocs and students. Tickets (15$) for Side and Rear Orchestra seats can be purchased on the Berkeley Symphony website using the code LABGRAD15. For questions and help call 510-841-2800 x1.

Tip of the Bay

The Real Future Fair is a one-day event at the intersection of diversity, culture and technology, taking place this year on on November 15, 2016 with guest Edward Snowden in telecast. In the aftermath of the election, they have decided to make the event free, so that attendees can gather and think with perspective. You can get tickets here.

Quote of the week

“The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair.”  – Douglas Adams

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Best regards,
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn
// fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #13 – October 25th, 2016

Hello fellows,

In two weeks, it’ll be election day! Whether you choose to vote or debate with your peers, don’t miss the chance to express your voice. It is up to us, young researchers, to speak up and bring science on the main stage.

This is newsletter #13.

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Series X: Frances Hellman

Frances Hellman, dean of Physical Sciences at UC Berkeley, will talk to postdocs on Monday, October 31st, at 12 pm/noon (beware, unusual time) in the Auditorium of building 50. Mina Bissell will then be up the following week. More information is available here.

Postdoc orientation

Next postdoc orientation will be on Wednesday, November 2nd at 8:45am in Aud50. There will be contributors from, IT Safety and Workforce Development & Education, followed by information on visa and immigration. Participation to the first section is optional.

Pub night

The next pub night will be on Friday, November 4th, 5:30 pm at the Tap Haus (2516 Durant). Come and enjoy the last evening before daylight savings steals away an hour of fun!

Visit of the Mathematical Science Research Institute

David Eisenbud, director of the MSRI, will give a tour and an introduction of his research institute. It’s a great way to learn more about how science is done on a blackboard. The visit will be on Monday, November 7th, 2016 at 4 pm. We’ll meet up at the ALS at 3:45 pm. Please sign up here.

Initiation to sailing/kayak

Join us on Saturday, November 12th, at 10 pm at CalAdventures in the Berkeley marina for an introduction to sailing or kayaking! The cost should be around $20, and be prepared to get wet!

Please sign up here.

Forbes 30 under 30

We are looking for postdocs to be promoted in the Forbes 30 under 30 list. Please nominate one of your fellows who you believe has made a significant contribution to science or society (she/he must be under 30, of course). Don’t be shy: being a scientist is already half of what makes you unique! Send us your nominations to before October 31st.

“10 things you should know about”

We are also looking for postdocs who are willing to be featured in the upcoming “10 things you didn’t know about [this person]” series in Today at Berkeley Lab. This is a great occasion to share your passion for bees or your fantasy about walking on Mars. Please contact us !

Tips of the bay

SF Open Studios, the oldest and largest open studios program in the country, is going on for two more weeks. A great occasion to explore San Francisco and find amazing art at every turn. You’ll discover an authentic connection to your art community and artwork in a myriad of forms, from painting, photography, and printmaking to glass, metal sculpture, and more for free.

Quote of the week

“I have yet to see any problem, however complicated, which, when you looked at it in the right way, did not become still more complicated.”  – Poul Anderson

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Power to the people !
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #12 – October 14th, 2016

Hello fellows,

We hope you’re all enjoying the beautiful colors of the fall in Berkeley, with the leaves gently blowin in the wind. Don’t miss the rows of yellow Gingkos on Mabel St in South Berkeley!

This is newsletter #12.

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Pub night at Spats

Please join us Friday October 14th, 2016 5:30-8pm at Spats (1973 Shattuck) to enjoy good beers and the comfort of a wooden bar !

Series X : Frances Hellman

On Monday, October 31st, the BLPA seminar : Series X will feature Frances Hellman, dean of physical sciences at UC Berkeley. She will narrate her successful career in science and engage with postdocs and provide insight that goes beyond just science! Time and location as usual (11am in Aud50) More informations.

Postdoc appreciation event in ETA

Rejoice! The National Postdoc Appreciation Week is not over till it’s over! The Energy Technology Area is organizing its own appreciation event in Pers Hall (cafeteria) on Thursday October 20th, 3:30-5pm. Please Register here before October 17.

Entrepreneurship for postdocs : BLIC with Todd Morrill

The tech transfer office at LBNL is organizing a talk with Todd Morrill, regional director of NSF Innovation Corps on Tuesday, October 18th 4:30-5:30pm in B15-253 (next to ALS). It’s a great occasion to learn how you can quickly do market research for your research and meet like-minded entrepreneurial scientists. Refreshments will be served, highly recommended!

Free tasting tour of Trumer Pils brewery

INSPIRE invites postdoc spouses, partners and beer lovers to a free tour of the legendary Berkeley brewery Trumer Pils (1410 Fourth St) on Tuesday, October 18th 3-5pm. Please register here.

Visit of the Mathematical Science Research Institute (MSRI)

The legend goes that MSRI (located above the Lawrence Hall of Science) has a better view of the bay than we do… It’s time to figure it out, at sunset! The visit is scheduled for Monday, November 7th 2016 at 4 pm; we’ll meet up at the ALS. Please sign up here.

Tip of the bay

If you’re a lover of jazz, you probably know already about The Soundroom, a venue in Oakland where every weekend jazz and blues artists come and play their delightful tunes. Do not miss it!

Quote of the week

“Transport of the mails, transport of the human voice, transport of flickering pictures — in this century, as in others, our highest accomplishment still have the single aim of bringing men together”  – Antoine de St-Exupery

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Singing in the rain
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #11 – September 15th, 2016

Hello fellows,

We would like to thank you for coming to the events last week, and hope you enjoyed them as much as we did putting them together ! We urge you to get your free NPA affiliate membership to create a critical mass at the upcoming NPA Annual meeting in San Francisco next March.

Hopefully, a few of our PIs will be awarded a Nobel Prize next week and share it with you. But the sum can’t buy you a house in Berkeley anymore… maybe a garage to conduct new crazy experiments !
This is newsletter #11.

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BASIS

Share your love of science with kids from elementary school! Bay Area Scientists in Schools is an organization that helps you connect with volunteer teaching opportunities in the East Bay. Learn more at the fall kick-off event Friday, Sept 30th 11:30am-1:30pm in Tan Hall 775 on campus (pizza and snacks provided). More information here.

Careers in Startups: Meet Hiring Startups and Learn the Ins and Outs!

BPEP and PIEP are organizing a joint event on campus (Stanley Hall Aud. 105) on Thursday, Sept 29th, 6-9pm, with startups from the Bay Area presenting how it’s like to work in a young company. The event will be followed by a career fair; please register here as “UC Other”.

INSPIRE toastmaster

Our friends at INSPIRE are organizing a toastmaster tonight, Tuesday Sept 27th at UC Village. It’s a great occasion to improve your spoken English and your oratory skills for you and your partner, but also to make new friends in the Bay Area. More info here.

Pub night

Please join us for the next pub night at Spats (1974 Shattuck) on Friday, October 14th at 5:30pm, for a drink, a snack and looking at the color of the trees outside.

Labtech

Don’t forget to participate to LBNL IT Department’s “Labtech” workshop, on October 11th. You will learn how to leverage the lab capabilities (high-performance computing, video-conferencing, etc.) to advance your research. Infos and registration here.

Uncharted

Uncharted is a TED-like event in downtown Berkeley happening October 14-15th (broader audience and much better than TEDxBerkeley) We can offer a few free tickets for those who are interested in going; please contact us at post.doc.lbl@gmail.com

Berkeley Lab Postdoc Network

This LinkedIn group gathering current and former postdocs is growing! Don’t be shy and subscribe ! There will soon be opportunities for live events networking and jobs.

Tip of the bay

Every first Sunday of the month, the giant Alameda flea market takes place in Alameda, an island just south of Oakland. It is a great occasion to find antiques while enjoying a wonderful view of the bay, and discover one of the best kept secret in the Bay Area (stroll around Park St. and Central St.)

Quote of the week

“The further experiment is from theory, the closer it is to the Nobel prize” -Dorothy Hogdkin

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Win bigly,
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #10 – September 15th, 2016

Dear postdocs,

Next week is the National Postdoc Appreciation Week, and we hope you will find an occasion to connect with your fellow postdocs, because after all, the story of the lab is first and foremost a history of successful collaborations.

If you have an active Twitter account, please let us know: postdocs from LBNL need to make their voice heard! Follow us at @BerkLabPostdocs, email us your @handle and include #NPAW2016 in your tweets next week.

This is newsletter #10

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National Postdoc Appreciation Week

You are all invited for the General Postdoc Appreciation event on Thursday, September 22nd starting at 5:30pm on the cafeteria patio. There will be savory food, drinks with ethanol and it’s a unique occasion to meet postdocs at the lab in their natural environment. Also keep an eye out for division-specific events that will be advertised locally – here’s the schedule.

Society of Women in the Physical Sciences

The SWPS builds a friendly and supportive environment for students by organizing regular dinners, mentoring opportunities, and events designed to guide students throughout their academic progress. To learn more, please visit their website.

Berkeley Lab Innovation Corps

If you want to learn how you can turn your research into a company at the lab, please join us on September 20th at 4:30-5:30pm in b15-253, with Peter Fiske who progressed from a lab scientist to an entrepreneur. Also, it’s startup season, so don’t miss the deadlines ! Application for the Foundry and Skydeck are due soon (Cyclotron Road starts Sept 29th)

Call for arts #3

Failed experiment ? Troublesome simulations ? Maybe your science only wants to express its artistic potential ! We are collecting materials (data, video, sounds) to bring fresh science to the museum and to the world. Send your contributions to art@lbl.gov !

More information on postdoc.lbl.gov/art.

Tip of the bay

The Fire trail is a wonderful hike that starts at the bottom of MSRI and bring you to the Botanical garden. It is the perfect hike for September, since takes it 10min to get there from the lab and lets you enjoy one hour of bliss during the sunset season !

Quote of the week

“The further experiment is from theory, the closer it is to the Nobel prize”

-Dorothy Hogdkin

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BLPA Newsletter #9 – August 3rd, 2016

Hello fellows,

We’re prepping up for the National Postdoc Appreciation Week with a bunch of events happening around the Lab. We hope you’ll enjoy the nice Labor Day weekend away from your bench.

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Spouses and partners welcome brunch

INSPIRE is organizing a welcome brunch on September 11th, 2016 at 11am. It’s a great occasion to meet new people and make new friends with scientists and non-scientists. Anyone can join. For more information, sign-up here.

Pub social at Tigerlily

Please join your fellow postdocs for a nice drink and snacks on Wednesday, September 14th, 2016 after 5:30pm at Tigerlily (1513 Shattuck Ave), enjoying the sweet fall sunsets on the terrace and the cool atmosphere of the Gourmet Ghetto.

Postdoc orientation

You are welcome to attend the next postdoc orientation meeting on Monday September 12th, 2016 at 2 pm in Perseverance Hall (the conference room behind the Cafeteria). It is open to all postdocs. We will give you an introduction about IT services and other useful information, especially for new hires, but not exclusively.

Career workshop: teaching jobs at colleges

Tom Donnelly from Harvey Mudd college will present job opportunities for postdocs at colleges on September 15th, 2016 at 11 am in the Auditorium (building 50). Come and learn how you can do and pass on all the science without the never-ending grant-writing!

Tip of the Bay

Since fall is underway, why not go to Sonoma for some apple picking? Take the Ratzlaff Ranch for example, and choose among the many juicy varieties of apples before you pick them. You’ll certainly eat apple tarts and apple sauce for two weeks after that, but it’s organic, locally grown, and of course delicious.

Quote of the week

A man is not idle because he is absorbed in thought. There is a visible labor and there is an invisible labor.  – Victor Hugo

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Have a nice week-end
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn
// fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #8 – August 17th, 2016

Hello fellow postdocs,

If you can’t make it to Black Rock City this year, cheer up!
We have lots of cool things happening that will make your friends on the playa jealous:)
This is newsletter #8.

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Series X with Saul Perlmutter

The next BLPA : Series X seminar with Nobel Prize recipient Saul Perlmutter will be held on Monday, August 29th at 11pm in Aud 50. Come and enjoy this unique conversation between postdocs and our esteemed colleague !

BLPA Career workshop

The first BLPA Career Workshop will be next Wednesday August 24th, 2016 3-5pm in Aud 50. The workshop will be about how to interviewing in the industry and at national lab with Michel Foure. Registration is required, please sign up here.

Bowling night

This wednesday August 17th, join us at the Albany Bowl around 7pm for a bowling session among postdocs. The venue located 540 San Pablo Ave in Albany is just North-West of Berkeley is easily accessible by BART (El Cerrito Plaza), bike or car.

New season of BPEP

The new season of the Berkeley Postdoc Entrepreneurial Program is up. The next monthly event is on Thursday, August 25th 2016 at 6pm in Stanley Hall, and the topic is “Financing your company: seed funding by angel investors”. Workshops are free, and followed by a catered networking event. Register here.

Looking for guest speakers for Workforce Development & Education (WD&E) undergraduate research interns

Berkeley Lab’s WD&E is looking for postdocs to present what they do here at the Lab, what their career path has been, and what they are interested in or passionate about to the Fall 2016 cohort of Workforce Development & Education. No slides needed ! More information here.

The presentations will be at 4pm, on September 29 (3pm), September 29, October 13, October 27 and November 10. Contact Laleh at LECote@lbl.gov if you’re interested.

Be A Scientist

If you’re interested in engaging with middle school students to tell them about science, you can be part of the ‘Be A Scientist’ program, starting September 22nd — once a week for six weeks. You can sign up on the website and be a role model for future generations of scientists.

Disambiguation: BLPA not associated with UC union

To dispel a seemingly common misconception, the Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association is not by any means associated with the UC union, which is a political organization pursuing different goals. The association, however, can be contacted to communicate issues and concerns to the lab management.

Tip of the Bay

Did you know you can go to salvage (building 79) and get scrap components? And that you can go to the Invention Lab@CITRIS (UC campus, Sutardja Dai hall) and use all their 3D printers and solder breadboards for $100/semester? Well, now you’re ready to complete your BM project.

Quote of the week

A thinker sees his own actions as experiments and questions–as attempts to find out something. Success and failure are for him answers above all.

– Friedrich Nietzsche

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Feel the burn,
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn
// fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #7 – August 3rd, 2016

Hello fellow postdocs,

There’s still plenty room at the bottom, yet so little in the race to the top. That is why we are starting a new workshop series focused career development.
This is newsletter #7.

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BLPA career workshop

We’re introducing the BLPA career workshop with the first one happening on August 24th, 2016 3-5pm in 50Aud.  Michel Foure will present “Interviewing in Industry and at National Labs”.
The event is free, but seatings are limited; please register here.

Bowling night

We are organizing a night out at Albany Bowl on August 17th, around 7pm. It is close to the El Cerrito Plaza BART stop, and the area has plenty of bars to spare. Save the date, the event will be open for registration soon !

Tilden hike & picnic

We are planning a hike at Tilden Park, along with a nice picnic and a steam train for families with kids on Sunday, August 14th. Please sign up here.

Bike exchange

If you are willing to sell, buy or simply borrow a bike, please let us know by completing this short form. This will help us evaluate the need for a bike exchange mechanism, where bikes can go from owner to owner in all confidence.

Call for Arts #2

We are still collecting artistic contributions from scientists! If you have cool designs or materials to share, please, send us an e-mail with a brief description and a picture at postdoc.lbl@gmail.com. (we will not use it without your permission)

Tip of the Bay

The First Friday of every month, there is a giant party in Oakland on Telegraph, between West Grand and 27th. It’s a great occasion to discover the city, and if you’re artistically inclined, be sure to explore Art Murmur in the back alleys (that’s how the whole thing started). You’ll probably end up at Cafe Van Kleef or at a concert at Awaken Cafe.

Quote of the week

“I like an escalator because an escalator can never break, it can only become stairs. There would never be an escalator temporarily out of order sign, only an escalator temporarily stairs. Sorry for the convenience.”  – Mitch Hedberg

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Bike safely,
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn
// fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #6 – July 20th, 2016

Hello fellow postdocs,

we hope you’re all enjoying the gentle fog and the long summer nights!
This is newsletter #6.

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San Francisco Marathon fundraiser

Berkeley Lab postdocs running the San Francisco marathon are organizing a fundraiser.

You can join the team or contribute here, and let your colleagues know about it! The collected funds will help us organize mixer events because we receive limited support from the Lab. Food and drinks are unallowable on Lab funds.

Additive manufacturing

The Lab has extended additive manufacturing capabilities (i.e. 3D printing), and we’ll be organizing a visit of the facilities very soon. Please sign up here if you’re interested to learn how you can use these tools to unleash your scientific imagination!

National Postdoc Association

Berkeley Lab is now part of the National Postdoc Association, and we are looking forward to participating in events that bring postdocs from around the Bay and across the country together. You can now register as an affiliate member for free, by selecting “Affiliate Individual Member, Postdoc”, using your lbl.gov email address and entering Lawrence Berkeley Lab as the professional organization later on.

BLPA board

The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association is looking for new board members. If you are interested in joining or learning more about the association, feel free to swing by next Tuesday, July 26th at 5:30pm in bldg 70, 228 (you can enter from the cafeteria patio).

Tip of the Bay

Every Friday and Saturday night at the Grand Lake Theater in Oakland, the screening is preceded by a Wurlitzer organ concert for select movies (those in green in the program). This weekend, don’t miss the occasion to add a retro-feel to Star Trek Beyond in 3D!

Quote of the week

“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”   – Thomas Alva Edison

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Live long and prosper <\V/
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #5 – July 5th, 2016

Hello fellow postdocs,

We hope you all had a great Independence Day weekend!
From now on, the newsletter will be sent every other Tuesday.
This is newsletter #5.

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Next pub night Friday, July 15th at Triple Rock (1920 Shattuck).

Please join us on the terrace upstairs to enjoy a few drinks and meet other postdocs on a long summer night! (the date is susceptible to shift slightly, depending on contingency; we’ll let you know!)

Berkeley Lab Postdoc Network

We remind you of the existence of the Berkeley Lab Postdoc Network, which gathers former and current postdocs of the lab, to keep track of the great talents that populate the lab. We invite to join by clicking here, and share the info with former postdocs you know. There will be a general gathering during the fall… don’t miss out !

Bay Area Scientists in Schools

Bay Area Scientists in Schools (BASIS) is looking for volunteers to teach fun, hands-on science lessons in local elementary classrooms. You can reach out to teach@crscience.org or visit them online at http://www.crscience.org/volunteers/aboutbasis. Find more information here.

Call for arts #1

We are looking for scientific productions that could be used to show people the wonders of science, and its abstract connection with the arts. To that end, we plan on engaging with the Berkeley Art Museum. The data can be failed experiments (SEM), cool infographics or simulations, but also sounds or smells (as long as it’s not toxic!) or even pictures of setups. All suggestions are welcome! Please, send us an e-mail with a brief description and a picture at postdoc.lbl@gmail.com. We will not use it without your permission.

Representing postdocs

The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association has a role of not only bringing people together and organizing events, but also representing the voice of postdocs to the management. We are NOT a union, but if you have questions or concerns regarding your status as a postdoc, let us know at postdoc@lbl.gov.

We will keep communications anonymous, but bear in mind that issues that are kept silent cannot be solved.

Tip of the bay

Every summer, the Berkeley Botanical garden organizes the Redwood Grove Summer Concerts, Thursdays at 5pm in the Redwood Grove. Indulge yourself in a musical evening, it’s only a 5min walk from the Strawberry Gate (next event is on July 7th, last on August 25th). Remember to buy tickets in advance, some concerts can be sold out!

Quote of the week

“The question of whether a computer can think is no more interesting than the question of whether a submarine can swim.”  – E. W. Dijkstra

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The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn
// fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #4 – June 10th, 2016

Dear postdocs,

We hope you’re all doing well ! For all the Euros in the house, it will be a time of brotherly love in times were doubts are cast on the character of the union. Still, we hope everyone will enjoy the transatlantic Superball !
This is newsletter #4.
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BLPA Seminar : Series X

Next Thursday, June 15th is the very first BLPA seminar, 12pm in 50-Aud. Mike Witherell, our lab director, has accepted to undergo some serious X-Ray examination of his career, and share his experience on how to become a successful scientist with you, beloved postdocs !

Writing for the Berkeley Science Review
The Berkeley Science Review is looking for writers, for articles ranging from 250 words to 4000. If you’re interested in sharing your research with a broader community, or simply write about a subject that you like, do note miss the occasion ! Pitches are due Monday, June 20th; more info here.
Seeking volunteer for lab visit to high school students and undergrads
The BLEND program is seeking tour guides for the ALS and guest speakers for 1h slots on June 14, 22-24th and July 8th. If interested please send an email to Tokiwa Smith at tokiwasmith@lbl.gov. It’s a great occasion to share your science and learn more about the lab in the process– highly recommended ! More information here.
 
Insight fellow program

Applications are currently open for Insight Data Science Silicon Valley Fellowships starting September 6th. The program is free, 7-week long and open to post-docs completing their research and looking to enter data science careers in the industry by December 2016. Apply now !  (the program is very selective, and the lab would allow leave for training, given your PI is in the loop)

Tip of the bay

June is the pride month in the Bay Area, an occasion to celebrate diversity in all its form. This year is the 40th edition of the Frameline festival, the International LGBT film festival, starting next Thursday at the landmark Castro theatre, in San Francisco. Whether you’re gay or straight, cis or trans, don’t miss out an occasion to learn about the many ways everyone love each other !

Quote of the week
I am among those who think that science has great beauty. A scientist in his laboratory is not only a technician: he is also a child placed before natural phenomena which impress him like a fairy tale.
– Marie Curie

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Peace, Love & Unity,
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn
// fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #3 – May 27th, 2016

Hello !
This week-end is Memorial Day week-end. Don’t forget to swap your safety glasses for a pair of sunglasses, and your cool labcoat for an even cooler hawaiian shirt!
This is newsletter #3
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BLPA talks series on June 15th, 12pm bldg 50 Auditorium

We are happy to announce that Lab Director Mike Witherell will kick off our BLPA talks series (in search for a better name), to an audience of postdocs and young scientist, where he will tell us about is career. This will be on June 15th at 12pm in 50Aud.

Next pub night on June 9th at Pappy’s

Please join us June 9th, 6-9pm at Pappy’s, 2367 Telegraph Ave. Let’s seize this amazing bar while all the undergrads are gone:-) There’s fresh beer as usual, good food and great people !

Last hike in Mt Diablo

Our last hike in Mt Diablo brought together twenty postdocs for a phenomenal hike on the highest mountain in the Bay Area! Stunning pictures of the long hike, below and above the clouds, can be found here.

Latest postdoc orientation
The first and latest postdocs orientation happened this week; slides are available here.
This was our first, and we’re open to any suggestion regarding the content !
Tip of the Bay
The Russian River, going through Sonoma County tho the ocean, will open this week-end for canoeing. It is a gorgeous and guiet 5h-ride journey the water among the trees, and it’s just an hour North of Berkeley. The easiest is to book canoe for two (they shuttle you back to the launchpad; book by phone a week in advance), but you can bring your own if you feel adventurous.

Quote of the week
“Physics is that subset of human experience which can be reduced to coupled harmonic oscillators”  – Michael Peskin

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Have a nice Memorial Day week-end !
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn
// fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

 

BLPA Newsletter #2 – May 13th, 2016

Hello !
Congratulations for opening a presumably spooky email on Friday the 13th!
Don’t be afraid, nothing bad can happen when you’re a postdoc.
This is newsletter #2.

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Mt. Diablo hike

The BLPA is organizing a casual hike on Sunday, May 22nd. If you want to join us, please sign up here ! Depending on the number of participants, there might be a split between a short and a long hike; we’ll organize transportation from Berkeley for whoever needs it.

Postdoc orientation on May 25th, 12:30-1:30pm in Pers Hall

There will be a postdoc orientation, with presentations about the lab and life as a postdoc; Workforce Development will tell you how you can engage in science with kid and there will be a presentation about library services. It’s the first of its kind, and you presence and feedback will be welcome– Pers Hall is the room at the back of the Cafeteria.

Recruiting Postdoc buddies !

In order to make it easier for new postdocs to navigate Berkeley before and when they arrive in town, we would like to pair them with seasoned postdoc who are willing to give them support and a some company in their early days (e.g. for lunch or during commute during their first week). If you wan to volunteer and be part of the fantastic postdoc buddy crew, please send an email to p.o.s.t.doc.lbl@gmail.com, with subject “Buddy postdoc”. You may well make someone happy and friend for life.

Other events

The BPEP is organizing an event on intellectual property and incorporation on May 26th, 2016 in Stanley Hall (106) on UC Berkeley Campus, where Robin Johnston from LBNL Tech Transfer will present how you can leverage the lab to start your own company. There’s good food, cool drinks, great people! Register here.
First pub night a success

Thanks all for coming to the first pub night; it was a great success with many people coming over, a great weather and fresh beers ! We’ll definitely make it happen again and again:).

Tip of the Bay

Next Sunday is Bay to Breakers in San Francisco– the biggest party of the year in San Francisco.

Though the most courageous can actually take part to the race from East to West (from the Bay to the Breakers), the whole city gets crazy and have tremendous fun. Be there early, and bring your best costume (no, your lab coat is not a costume:-p)

Quote of the week
“Irrigation of the land with seawater desalinated by fusion power is ancient. It’s called ‘rain’. – Michael McClary

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Stay safe, don’t drink and derive !
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn // fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs

BLPA newsletter #1 – April 30, 2016

Hello,

We are happy to announce you that we are now able to reach all postdocs at the lab, whether they are employees of the lab or affiliates. What’s more, the Berkeley Postdoc Association (BLPA) has just been formed, and we will regularly communicate about activities. All these activities are open to grad students, visiting scholars and early careers.

This is newsletter #1.

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First Pub night

The first BLPA pub night will be on Thursday, May 5th from 5:30pm at the Free House (2700 Bancroft). Please join us to meet other cool postdocs and have a good time !

Berkeley Lab Postdoc Network
We are currently building up the Berkeley Lab Postdoc Network, gathering current and past postdocs of the lab, in order to maintain bonds between all the great scientists who have spent time at the lab. We will organize events with past alumni, giving occasions to reconnect with the lab and discuss about life after postdoc (yes! there’s one !), provide mentorship and help match talents with opportunities. Here’s the corresponding LinkedIn group. Do not hesitate to invite your friends who were at LBL but left already!
Outdoor activities – hike/bike on Mt Diablo

We would like to organize an informal hike (or bike ride, would there be enough participants) on Mt Diablo during a week-end of May. If you’re interested, we need to know about your availability to accommodate the most people : please participate to the poll “Mt Diablo hike/bike“.

Logo competition
The BLPA is looking for a proper logo, fueled by ideas coming from the community. If you have cool ideas, please send your designs to SGriffin@lbl.gov .

Job offer in molecular biology

Aaron Hammack, CTO of Epibiome and former postdoc at the lab has a job offer for a Research Scientist in Molecular Biology with a background in microbiology to filled in the coming weeks. Here’s the full description (visible only with your lbl.gov account.)

Tip of the Bay – Critical Mass in San Francisco

Last Friday of the Month is the day of Critical Mass in San Francisco, where bikes take over the the city for a crazy ride. If you want to participate, just bring your bike and be at Justin Herman plaza in San Francisco (Embarcadero BART) around 6:30pm.

Quote of the week
“As an adolescent I aspired to lasting fame, I craved factual certainty, and I thirsted for a meaningful vision of human life – so I became a scientist. This is like becoming an archbishop so you can meet girls.”  – M. Cartmill

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May the Van der Waals force be with you !
The Berkeley Lab Postdoc Association
postdoc.lbl.gov // @BerkLabPostdocs
LinkedIn
// fb.com/BerkeleyLabPostdocs