NextGen VOICES survey: Is the idea of the postdoc position obsolete in today's scientific landscape? Monday, April 13, 2015 Don’t miss the new NextGen survey, specifically on postdocs! Is the idea of the postdoc position obsolete in today's scientific landscape? If so, what should replace it? If not, what one change would you make to improve it? A selection of the best responses will be published in the 3 July 2015 issue of Science. Please submit your response by 15 May. Unconscious gender bias persists in science Driving Force April 10, 2015 A half-century ago, the renowned social anthropologist Margaret Mead wrote: Take our Science Careers annual top employers survey Take our Science Careers annual top employers survey Tuesday, April 7, 2015 In the past few weeks we sent you an invitation to participate in this survey designed to identify the best employers in the biotech and pharmaceutical industries. Over 3,000 individuals have already participated. But frankly, the more respondents, the more meaningful the results can be for you. And you can help by completing our survey. When scientists have to pay out of pocket to do their jobs When scientists have to pay out of pocket to do their jobs Driving Force April 6, 2015 Recent discussions on Twitter and science blogs show that scientists often pay for necessary professional expenses with their own money. This unfortunate expectation hurts students and weakens the pool of potential scientists by weeding out those with fewer resources.     Untethering science careers from the research frontier Untethering science careers from the research frontier Driving Force March 4, 2015 When seeking guidance on graduate education as preparation for careers in science, there is an awful lot to take into account—both theoretically and empirically. STEM mentors face difficulties in directing students toward uneven playing fields Driving Force February 10, 2015 Parents, teachers, coaches, and mentors direct talent. They steer students toward certain pursuits, and by omission, ignorance or choice, away from others. This makes sense, but sometimes ... nonsense. The problem is that students are moving targets. They mature at different rates, change interests, and are influenced by the social and mass media. For every high school athlete shooting for the NBA or NFL, or "American Idol" contestant shooting for recording fame, a minuscule fraction achieve that particular dream.   Are academies destined to be participatory or exclusionary pools? Driving Force February 2, 2015 It's the season for movie awards. Diversity, or the lack thereof in the Oscar nominations, has made headlines yet again. There are no persons of color in 20 acting categories. Coincidence? A statistical anomaly? Regardless, questions are being raised, and they are not unrelated to the issue of recognition in science. Q&A with David Burgess: NIH National Research Mentoring Network Driving Force January 13, 2015 In October 2014, NIH announced $31 million in awards “to develop new approaches to engage researchers from underrepresented backgrounds” in preparation for scientific careers. One of the awards, implemented in response to NIH’s Advisory Committee to the Director’s Working Group on Diversity in the Biomedical Research Workforce, established the NIH National Research Mentoring Network, or NRMN. AAAS MemberCentral blogger Daryl E. Yet another committee says postdoc training needs overhaul Yet another committee says postdoc training needs overhaul Driving Force January 6, 2015 A new report issued by the National Academies details the continuing problems with postdoctoral training and issues some blunt recommendations for finally changing the status quo. A community college antidote to African American male underachievement A community college antidote to African American male underachievement Driving Force December 2, 2014 The headline caught my eye: Are African American women overachieving in engineering? Some persuasive undergraduate-degree data cited in the article support the contention, but send a dangerous message. The danger is that something so positive suggests that no problem exists. It can breed complacency by those for whom diversity is but one of several “priorities.” The real problem may be that it diverts attention from the critical issue that African American men are underachieving in science. Indeed, they represent two of every five African Americans attending college and only one of every three completing an engineering degree. Women’s participation in engineering is so striking, countering other minority trends, that we should celebrate. But universities must emulate the lead of employers, redoubling their efforts to enroll and graduate students of color in all STEM disciplines.