2009 Duke Postdoctoral Professional Development Award Winners

The Duke Office of Postdoctoral Services, along with the Vice Provost for Research and the Vice Dean for Basic Sciences, is pleased to announce the winners of the 2009 Postdoctoral Awards for Professional Development. These awards are designed to support postdocs' professional development needs by providing reimbursement for activities that directly enhance the individual's professional growth.

   Elisabeth L. Engebretsen, PhD, Women's Studies

Elisabeth L. Engebretsen is currently a Postdoctoral Associate in Transnational Sexualities at Duke's Women's Studies Program.  She has a PhD in Anthropology from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE) with a thesis titled "Love in a Big City: Sexuality, Kinship, and Citizenship amongst Lala ('lesbian') Women in Beijing" (2008).  She majored in Chinese Studies and Socio-Cultural Anthropology for her BA degree at the University of Oslo, holds Masters degrees in Gender Studies and Socio-Cultural Anthropology from the LSE, and has studied Chinese language and literature at Sichuan University and Xiamen University in China.  Her research concerns women’s same-sex sexuality, kinship and marriage ideologies and practices, and cultural citizenship in globalizing China.  Her work has appeared in the Feminist Review, Contemporary Political Theory, Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute, Culture, Health, and Sexuality, the Graduate Journal of Social Sciences, and is forthcoming in Sexuality Research and Social Policy.

Dr. Engebretsen will be spending Summer 2009 in Beijing, China, to update data for her dissertation, which she is revising into a book manuscript entitled Different Women:  The Cultural Politics of Sexuality and National Identity in Postsocialist Beijing.  She will speak at the Conference on Chinese Sexualities and Social Development at Renmin University, Beijing.  Her paper will be published in a Chinese social sciences journal following the conference.


      Mickey Kosloff, PhD, Department of Ophthalmology

Mickey Kosloff received his PhD in Structural and Molecular Biochemistry from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel.  He then took a 3 year postdoc at Columbia University, where he learned how to develop and apply computational methods to understand protein function.  In 2006 Dr Kosloff began a postdoctoral appointment under Dr Vadim Arshavsky in the Duke Department of Ophthalmology, where he combines experimental and computational approaches to decipher how 3D structure encodes interaction specificity in signaling proteins.

Dr. Kosloff will travel to Israel to attend the ILSI Biomed 2009 Conference.  This conference is the largest meeting of its kind in Israel, bringing together Israeli biotech companies, venture capital firms, and representatives from academia and government.  Dr Kosloff will schedule interviews with relevant companies and explore employment options in the Israeli biotech field, and also follow up on academic job opportunities.


 Jaclyn Schwarz, PhD  Jaclyn Schwarz, PhD, Duke Institute for Brain Sciences

Jaclyn Schwarz obtained her undergraduate degree from Boston College and her PhD in Neuroscience from the University of Maryland School of Medicine in 2008.  Her thesis research focused on the underlying mechanisms by which sex differences are established in the brain during development.  Dr Schwarz is currently a Postdoctoral Associate in the lab of Dr. Staci Bilbo at Duke University, where she studies the mechanisms by which differences in drug abuse liability in adulthood may be established during development.

Dr. Schwarz will travel to the annual meeting of the Organization for the Study of Sex Differences (OSSD) in Toronto, ON.  The OSSD is a newly formed scientific society, of which Dr Schwarz is a founding member, and for which she currently serves as the Young Investigator Councilor.


The Office of Postdoctoral Services thanks the 2009 Awards Committee:  Dr. Joshua Carter, Dr. John Schmidt, Ms. Molly Starback, Dr. Tomalei Vess, and Dr. Anne West.