Archives for Podcast

Grand Challenges and Setting Ambitious Goals, with Michelle Popowitz – Ep #15

With the start of a new year, many Americans commit to resolutions and ambitious goals they hope to accomplish throughout the year’s end.

Many organizations have ambitious goals as well, but all too often they fail to make these goals specific and connected to a deadline. UCLA’s creation of so-called “Grand Challenges” is a bold departure from such fuzzy, timid-by-comparison initiatives. UCLA’s Grand Challenges are inspiring endeavours to solve the most difficult societal problems by a fixed date by harnessing the University’s deep, diverse resources across disciplines. Leading UCLA’s Grand Challenge program is Michelle Popowitz. 

Michelle is the Assistant Vice Chancellor for Research and Co-Founder of UCLA Grand Challenges.


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How to Ask More Questions, and Unleash Your Power to Spark Change, with Frank Sesno – Ep #14

When was the last time you spoke with someone who made you feel they were genuinely interested in what you had to say? The drive to ask more questions is something that we all possess from an early age. Have you spent time with a young child recently? They love to ask questions. What happened to that drive? Yet, for many adults, instead of asking more questions, talking and long monologues crowd out listening during interactions, a major missed opportunity for many of us to explore new ways of thinking and acting. Frank Sesno, in his brilliant book “Ask More”,


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Encouraging Mentoring Relationships, with Dr. Valerie Fako Miller – Ep #13

What is the value of investing in and encouraging mentoring relationships? As you look at the progress you’ve made in your career, can you point to a mentoring relationship that made a significant impact on your development? Leading the charge and championing mentoring relationships at the University of Chicago is Dr. Valerie Fako Miller.

Dr. Fako Miller is the Assistant Director of Postdoctoral Affairs in the Biological Sciences Division at the University of Chicago. She was a postdoc at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in the National Cancer Institute where she served as the liaison between NIH fellows and training directors of NIH institutes.


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Why We Need More Internship Opportunities for Postdoc Researchers, with Dr. Shoba Subramanian – Ep #12

For too long, research and postdoc studies have been limited to an exclusively academic environment. It’s time for a change in the form of increased internship opportunities. Raising this important call in postdoc studies is Dr. Shoba Subramanian. 

Dr. Subramanian is the Director of Curriculum and Educational Initiatives at the University of Michigan Medical School. In her current role, she uses her scientific background for curriculum innovation and leads the career and professional development team in the office of graduate and postdoctoral studies. Shoba holds a PhD from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) and completed her postdoctoral training at UCSF and also Carnegie Mellon during which time she had a productive research career in Molecular Biology,


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Leading the Way with Administrative Accountability, with Dr. Stephanie Huie – Ep #11


All too often higher education gets a bad reputation when it comes to administrative accountability. Imagine what it would look like if more educational institutions championed accountability and transparency. Helping to pave the way in this vital arena is Dr. Stephanie Huie.

Vice Chancellor Dr. Stephanie Huie is one of 7 Executive Officers for the University of Texas System. Responsible for strategy, policy analysis, accountability, and project management for the UT System (235,780 students) and its 14 academic and health institutions with an overall operating budget of $19.5 billion, Dr. Huie is Vice Chancellor for the Office of Strategic Initiatives for The University of Texas System.


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Broader Impacts Defined and Helpful Communication Tips, with Dr. Michael Thompson – Ep #10

What do you think of when you hear the term, “Broader Impacts?” Have you ever received a brief and definitive explanation of the term? To remove all confusion and cut to the heart of what this term means is the Broader Impacts Guy himself, Dr. Michael Thompson. 

Dr. Thompson is currently on the Senior Staff of the Office of the Vice President for Research and the Founding Director of the Broader Impacts in Research organization at the University of Oklahoma. Dr. Thompson specializes in Impact Strategy, Professional Faculty Development, Broader Impact Research, Proposal Development, Social Entrepreneurship, and much more.


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Innovative Ways to Highlight Science and Policy Work, with Dr. Jeffrey Toney – Ep #9

When was the last time a science and policy article went viral? If you are struggling to think of one, you aren’t alone. With the help of skilled professionals like Dr. Jeffrey Toney, the tide might be changing. 

Dr. Jeffrey Toney is an educator and a scientist whose career has spanned academia and the pharmaceutical industry. He serves as Provost and Vice President of Academic Affairs at Kean University in Union, Toms River, and Manahawkin, New Jersey, as well as Wenzhou, China. Kean University is focused on access and opportunity. His news media publications include Huffington Post


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How to be a Powerhouse in Science Advocacy Work, with Dr. Adriana Bankston – Ep #8

What does it take to kickstart a career in science advocacy? Do you need to make the right connections and relationships at the right time or is a “make it up as you go” type of endeavor? If you’ve wondered about getting involved with this critical work, you’ve come to the right place. Here to share her experience getting involved with science advocacy is Dr. Adriana Bankston.

Dr. Bankston is a skeletal muscle biologist turned science policy researcher. She is a member of the Board of Directors at Future of Research, a nonprofit organization with a mission to champion,


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Scientists’ Unique Advantage in Running for Office, with Shaughnessy Naughton – Ep #7


Did you know that there is a distinct and valuable advantage to having more scientists running for office? When scientists step out and contribute to the political process, we get more people making policy decisions that value facts and evidence. During the midterm elections, ten new science-credentialed candidates were elected: one senator and nine members of the House.

The current members of the 115th Congress include one physicist, one microbiologist, and one chemist, as well as eight engineers and one mathematician. The medical professions are slightly better represented, with three nurses and 15 doctors, as well as at least three veterinarians.


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How to Get Involved with Science Policy Work, with Dr. Elizabeth Wayne – Ep #6

What does it take to get involved with science policy work substantively and effectively? Are the opportunities out there easy to find or do you have to do some digging? In this episode, you’ll hear from Dr. Elizabeth Wayne as she opens up about her journey into science policy work, why science shouldn’t stay out of politics, the value of civic engagement, and so much more.

Dr. Wayne is an award-winning biomedical engineer, TED Fellow, speaker, and advocate for women in higher education. She is also the co-host of the PhDivas Podcast. Dr. Wayne is currently a National Cancer Institute Cancer Nanotechnology Training Program Postdoctoral Fellow in the Eshelman School of Pharmacy at UNC-Chapel Hill.


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