Ohio State Resources

Postdoc Career Development Yearly Programming

Career Counseling and Support Services

The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs and Career Counseling and Support Services (CCSS) have partnered to launch a pilot program that will offer career counseling and support services to postdoctoral scholars starting July 1, 2018.

Services include, but are not limited to:

  • Resumes/CVs/Cover Letters
  • Interview tips/assistance
  • Networking Strategies
  • Career Exploration
  • Job Search Strategies

You can find more information online.

Please call 614-688-3898 to make an appointment. This process will ensure that you will see a career counselor assigned to postdoctoral scholars.

  • Be sure to identify yourself as a postdoctoral researcher or scholar when making the appointment and when filling out the intake forms (even if your official title is visiting scholar, research associate, research scientist, visiting assistant professor, etc.)
  • The CCSS is located in the Younkin Success Center (2nd Floor), 1640 Neil Avenue, Columbus, OH 43210


Clinical Research Career Development Programs

The OSU CCTS KL2 Program supports the career development of investigators who have made a commitment to conduct either patient-oriented or translational research. Support is available for up to three years.

The OSU CCTS TL1 Program is to provide trainees with the skills required to develop a career in trans-disciplinary clinical and translational research relevant to human health.

Research Training and Education Programs

Tools of the Trade is a series of all-day sessions for early stage investigators who need information about accessing and using available tools and resources to get their research project up and running.

Mentorship Training is available through the OSU CCTS. The training uses a case-based approach to explore an intellectual framework for mentoring, and allow mentors a forum to solve mentoring dilemmas with their peers. It is presented over four, 2-hour sessions. Session topics can be found on the website.

Postdoc Writing Groups (CSTW)Banner3

Sponsored by the Center for the Study of Teaching and Writing (CSTW), the Post-Doc Writing Group is a forum in which post-doctoral scholars provide and receive feedback on their writing, covering broad issues such as clarity and organization as well as stylistic issues. Groups may also use weekly meetings to sit down and write together. Groups are interdisciplinary and consist of 5-6 post-docs and an experienced Writing Center staff member who acts as facilitator. Groups typically meet once per week for 90 minutes, although some groups make alternative arrangements by mutual agreement. For more information on other writing groups that the CSTW offers, visit their site here.

Management Skills

BuckeyeLearn has important training tools to help you develop skills to help you in your field. To access these tools and online modules, go to BuckeyeLearn and log in with your OSU ID.

Select “Browse for Training” and go to “Subject”

Click “Development” and select “Professional”. Here you will find the following management skills resources:

  • The Art of Influencing Others

For other resources, go to the “Search” bar and search for:

  • Emotional Intelligence (a four-part series)
  • Test Development Workshop

These are workshops/modules that we recommend you take a look at. Feel free to explore the other resources available to you on BuckeyeLearn!

Developing Teaching Skills

The University Center for the Advancement of Teaching (UCAT)  in cooperation with Career Connection provides resources that can help find answers to your career questions. UCAT offers consultations concerning your Teaching Statement and Portfolio whereas Career Connection provides assistance with most other aspects of the Academic Job Search.

The Center for Life Sciences Education (CLSE) provides educational opportunities for postdocs. If interested, contact Caroline Breitenberger.

Ohio Union Activities Board StudentLife.EventCalendar.Web.UI.EventThumbnail

Postdocs can participate in the OUAB Grad/Prof activities, which include Professional Development, personal enrichment, and social engagement programs. For upcoming events view their events calendar here.

Internship Opportunities at the Technology Commercialization Office (TCO)

Internship opportunities similar to the ones offered to undergraduate students may be available to postdocs. If interested, please contact Krystal Geyer, Student Programs Manager, at (614)-292-4177 or at

External Resources

Entering Mentoring (A Seminar to Train a New Generation of Scientists)
“In Their Own Words”: a video series in which recipients of the Presidential Awards for Excellence in Science, Mathematics & Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM) share a variety of lessons.

NIH Podcasts:

To advance in your career and succeed in your first non-training position, you will need skills beyond the bench. As the National Academies pointed out in its 2005 report, Bridges to Independence, many of those skills have not been explicitly or thoroughly taught to young scientists. It is very important to realize that you may need some support in areas such as job search skills, job offer negotiation, grant writing, and lab management. Talk to your PI, take advantage of the many career development opportunities on campus, and visit some of these resources to strengthen these often-overlooked, but critically important skills.

Making the Right Moves: A Practical Guide to Scientific Management for Postdocs and New Faculty 

In 2006, the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) and the Burroughs Wellcome Fund (BWF) released a new edition of this excellent publication. The contents are derived from BWF-HHMI courses in lab leadership and management. In this free PDF, you will find advice on topics such as obtaining a faculty position; project management; data management and laboratory notebooks; getting published; and teaching and course design.

The American Society for Cell Biology (ASCB): Careers 

The ASCB has a multitude of career development resources available to postdocs, as well as access to free PDF versions of three career books: Career Advice for Life Scientists; Career Advice for Life Scientists II; and Life Sciences Research & Teaching: Strategies for the Successful Job Hunt, along with a collection of career strategy articles from the society’s newsletter.

NIH Trainee Workshop Handouts and Presentations ​

The NIH Office of Intramural Training & Education (OITE) makes most of the proceedings  from their events for grad students and postdocs at the NIH available for anyone, anywhere to access for free. Visit this page to find a wealth of career resources (videocasts and presentation files) from their past events, including information about presenting and publishing your research, project management, job searches in academia and industry, interviewing, and even business etiquette.

 Career Planning

Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology (FASEB) Individual Development Plan for Postdoctoral Fellows​

The results of the national Sigma Xi Postdoc Survey suggest that individual development plans are a beneficial tool for the postdoctoral experience. This plan is one version that you could complete and discuss with your faculty advisor. For more information about the utility of plans, see “Planning for a positive postdoc.”

The National Postdoctoral Association (NPA) Career Planning Resources

The NPA advocates for postdocs nationwide, endeavoring to improve the postdoctoral experience. This section of their site highlights NPA and other career resources. Interested in exploring careers in and outside of academia? Don’t miss the NPA section on Career Options for PhDs.

Do You Wanna Be a VAP?

In a tough academic job climate, should a postdoc aspiring to a tenure-track position with a teaching focus accept a visiting assistant professor (VAP) post as an interim step? This article lays out pros and cons of doing so, providing examples of how a VAP position factored into the career paths of a number of scientists.

006Management Resources for the Life Sciences Investigator 

At the Helm: Leading Your Laboratory, Second Edition

Business Sense: Starting an Academic Lab

Lab Dynamics: Management Skills for Scientists

Resources for the Development of Early-Career Scientists 

Workshops and Meetings

Management Advancement for the Public Service (MAPS) Program
Training seminars that build management and leadership skills, as well as additional training in skills required to be a successful principal investigator.

Ohio State Leadership Center
Provides high-quality, practical programs to build and strengthen leadership capacities for individuals, organizations, and communities.

Davis Heart and Lung Research Institute Early Career Development
Offers seminars and workshops in a number of topics.  Contact dhlri.ecd@osumc for more information.

Leadership and Management Development
Resources and programs that can be helpful in supporting growth in leadership, including leader roles and responsibilities, promotion and tenure, faculty review and development, evaluating instruction, legal issues, managing staff, and financial stewardship.

Workshop on Leadership in Bioscience (Cold Spring Harbor)
Highly interactive workshop in which you will learn and develop the skills to lead and interact effectively with others in both one-on-one and group settings.

The Science of Team Science
The Annual International Science of Team Science (SciTS) Conference is a forum to enhance our understanding of how best to engage in Team Science to meet society’s needs.