Research Careers Ahead Virtual Series

The Research Careers Ahead Professional Development Series aims to inspire students, trainees, and junior faculty to embrace a research career.  Each session will equip participants with the knowledge and skills needed to develop a robust research program as well as provide an opportunity for professional networking with other scientists. 

If you have a topic, speaker, or idea you would like to share, please contact us.


Image of Lauren Anderson and a stock photo of a female doctor thinking while trying to write in a notebook

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June 26th, 2024, 4:00-5:00 PM Lauren Anderson, PhD; Director, Research Development, Department of Surgery

Writing for Funding: Focusing on Significance and Innovation

  • Dr. Anderson will provide a review of the Significance and Innovation sections of the research strategy for NIH proposals, and offer tips on how to address the required items in these sections to get funded.

View prior sessions:

Young Physician-Scientist Series: Tips on Starting a Research Lab (May 22, 2024) An inter-institutional panel discussion with:

  • Gow Arepally, MD (Moderator); Professor of Medicine, Hematologist, Duke University;
  • Anna Nam, MD; Assistant Professor, Pathologist, Weill Cornell Medicine; 
  • Sudarshan Rajagopal, MD, PhD; Associate Professor, Cardiologist, Duke University; and 
  • Melissa Mavers, MD, PhD; Assistant Professor, Pediatric Oncologist, Washington University-St. Louis

Negotiating Physician Employment Agreements Frederick R. Zufelt, Esq; Deputy General Counsel, Private Diagnostic Clinic, PLLC (April 24, 2024)

Tips for Effective Data Visualization Eric E. Monson, PhD; Data Visualization Analyst, Duke University Libraries, Center for Data and Visualization Sciences (March 27, 2024)

Grant Administration: Effort Management Deborah Martin, MA; Director and Senior Grants and Contracts Manager, Research Administration, RASR Zone 2 (February 28, 2024).


How to Budget and Manage Grant Finances  Deborah Martin, MA; Director, Research Administrator, Research Administration Support Resource (RASR) (December 13, 2023)

The purpose of this session was to provide an overview of how to budget for a grant application and manage finances once the project is awarded.

Journey of a Physician-Scientist: A Conversation with Jennifer Grandis Jennifer Grandis, MD; Professor of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery, Associate Vice Chancellor for Clinical and Translational Research, University of California at San Francisco (September 27, 2023)

Join Rasheed Gbadegesin, MD, Associate Dean for Physician-Scientist Development, for an informal interview and conversation about Dr. Grandis’ journey as a surgeon-scientist, her challenges and successes, how she has maintained work/life balance, and her work on gender equity in academic medicine.

Publishing Your Science: Finding the Right Journal, Preparing Your Submission, and Understanding Peer Review  Jillian Hurst, MD; Assistant Professor of Pediatrics (August 23, 2023)

This presentation covers publishing models, considerations when preparing your manuscript to submission, and understanding how peer review works, including different editorial models and the main components of the peer review process. 

Mechanics of Writing a Compelling Grant: What Reviewers Want to See and How to Give it to Them  Dee Gunn, MD, Professor of Medicine and Immunology, Duke University (June 28, 2023)

Dr. Gunn offers a blueprint for writing the specific aims page of an NIH grant as well additional tips and guidance.

Strategies for Navigating the Academic Job Market  Andrew Landstrom, MD, Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Duke University (May 24, 2023)

Dr. Landstrom focuses on practical tips and advice on the transition from the end of training to a faculty position from a first-hand perspective. 

How to Effectively Use Social Media for Public Engagement in Science  Matthew Sparks, MD, Associate Professor of Medicine and Program Director, Nephrology Fellowship (April 26, 2023)

This session will focus on how to use modern communication skills to not only promote your science, but also to propel your career.

Tips for Writing an Effective Abstract  Samantha Kaplan, PhD; Research and Education Liaison Librarian to the School of Medicine, Duke Medical Center Library (March 22, 2023)

When you search PubMed (or most databases), did you know you’re only searching the title, abstract and keywords? That’s why it’s so important to write an effective, concise, and clear abstract! Watch this session to understand how abstracts help people find your paper, learn how to pick keywords, and think about how to refine your abstract writing skills.

Tips for Effective Academic Posters  Eric Monson, PhD; Data Visualization Specialist, Duke Libraries Center for Data and Visualization Sciences

Poster sessions are an incredible opportunity to share our work with a broader audience, get feedback, and network with our peers, as well as potential employers, funders, and collaborators. Our careers often depend on performing well in these exciting and often chaotic venues, but few of us are trained in graphic design and visual storytelling! In this talk, I will present some principles for creating an effective academic poster and introduce you to a group critique process that should help you tell your story more clearly and stand out from the crowd.