Vol 6. Issue 35 / November 13, 2006

Changing of the Guard at the Society of Fellows

By Mika Ono

It has been a month for voting, not only for congressional seats, the governorship, and ballot initiatives, but also for leadership positions at The Scripps Research Institute's Society of Fellows (SOF).

After a close race at the SOF's annual election on the La Jolla campus November 2, Justin Carlson, a research associate in the Wilson lab, emerged as the new SOF president. "I would like to thank the SOF," said Carlson. "I share many common ideals with the organization and as president, I'll do my best to represent the interests of TSRI postdocs."

The SOF, whose history reaches back more than 40 years, encourages professional and social exchange within Scripps Research. All Scripps Research graduate students, staff, and current and former postdoctoral fellows are welcome to participate in SOF activities, which range from scientific lectures to "happy hours," from career development forums to cultural excursions.

Other newly elected members of the SOF executive committee are:

George Nicola, vice president

Tina Schroeder, treasurer

Anne Bellon, social chair

Olivier Harismendy, social co-chair

BinQing Wei, career chair

Steve Johnson, career co-chair

Kaustuv Datta, Distinguished Lecturer Series

Ron Nepomuceno, web site manager

Vendor show organizers will be determined at the next SOF monthly meeting, on Thursday, December 7. SOF meetings are held the first Thursday of the month, from noon to 1 PM (lunch is provided), in the BCC5S south fifth floor conference room of Beckman.

"All candidates should be saluted for their desire to contribute to the SOF," said outgoing SOF president Adam Mullick. "I'm proud of the SOF and this process that has enabled the organization to thrive all these years. Many generations of SOFers have continued our mission without skipping a beat—an amazing feat given that we are all busy with our science and the fact that research associates come and go."

Over the last year, SOF events have included talks in its Distinguished Lecturer Series by Claire Fraser of the Institute for Genomic Research, Paul Nurse of Rockefeller University, and Stanley Plotkin of the University of Pennsylvania; a spring vendor show that raised funds for the group; and outings including a skiing excursion to Big Bear, a trip to the L.A. County Museum of Art, and a sunset yacht cruise on Halloween. The next major event will be Cabin Camping Weekend on Catalina Island from Friday, December 1 to Sunday, December 3, when participants will have the opportunity to hike, kayak, scuba dive, or just sit back and enjoy the view of the California coast.

The SOF has also been partnering with Scripps Research's newly formed Office of Postdoctoral Services to sponsor events, including recent career development seminars on grant writing and scientific presentations, and the SOF research symposia showcasing the research of the institute's junior scientists.

In addition, a new SOF initiative has launched a postdoc tuition reimbursement program. The program, funded jointly by the Postdoctoral Services Office and the SOF, is now up and running, defraying the cost of taking professional development classes, such as those in the drug discovery and regulatory affairs certificate programs at the University of California, San Diego, Extension.

For more information on the SOF, see the group's web site at http://www.scripps.edu/services/sof/. For more information on postdoc tuition reimbursement, see http://www.scripps.edu/services/postdocs/career/coursereimbursement.html.


Send comments to: mikaono[at]scripps.edu




"Outgoing SOF officers Adam Mullick (left) and Ralph Pantophlet count the votes in the SOF executive committee election November 2. Photo by Kevin Fung.