7th Annual Duke Postdoctoberfest

Friday, October 12, 2012

The Office of Postdoctoral Services and the Duke University Postdoctoral Association (DUPA) held the 7th Annual Postdoctoberfest celebration on Friday, October 12, 2012, to honor the university’s hard-working postdocs and their mentors. Postdocs, their families, faculty, and staff enjoyed hot dogs, veggie dogs, local FullSteam and Foothills Brewery beers and Maple View ice cream, and the music of Brett Harris and Co. in the perfect fall weather. The giant bouncy tiger for the kids was a huge hit!

The highlight of the event was the presentation of awards to the Outstanding Postdoc and Outstanding Postdoc Mentor at Duke.  Dr. Anne West, Assistant Professor of Neurobiology in the Duke School of Medicine, presented the award for Outstanding Postdoc to Dr. Ronald McKell Carter in the Duke Center for Brain Imaging & Analysis.

One lab member who works with Dr. Carter wrote, "McKell is incredibly kind and generous with his knowledge and his time. He has mentored countless graduate students, research assistants, and undergraduates, while at the same time being one of the hardest workers I've ever collaborated with, as well as an extremely active father and husband. It is inspirational to see how he makes the time to commit his focus and enthusiasm towards so many areas of his life."

Another labmate wrote of Dr. Carter, "Science is competitive, no matter what field you work in. This can sometimes cause people to hoard their experience and refuse to work with others under the fear that doing so may compromise their work. McKell’s willingness to help anyone in the lab that comes to him is the key to making him such an outstanding postdoc. Whether you’re a fellow postdoc in the lab, an aspiring grad student, or an associate in research, McKell will take time out of his busy schedule to sit down, listen to your problem, and help you as best as he can. This is not a trait you find in many work environments, let alone one in science. It’s this altruistic behavior that really makes McKell a natural leader and someone that others respect."

Dr. James Siedow, Vice Provost for Research and Professor of Biology, presented the award for Outstanding Postdoc Mentor to Dr. Adam Wax from the Department of Biomedical Engineering. A former postdoc of Dr. Wax wrote, " Adam respects and trusts his group members and creates space for them to be their own boss, yet he cares about their development and knows the perfect timing to step in to guide and help. He is easily available almost all the time, and would regularly spend time in the lab talking with me and other members about ideas and experiments. He is never a micromanager, yet he made great efforts to keep himself up-to-date on our progresses, needs, and even small technical details, just so he could share his thoughts with us and be a great resource."

The faculty, administration, and staff of Duke University extend a hearty THANK YOU to all of our postdocs and postdoc mentors. We are proud to honor your achievements in research, mentoring, and teaching!