Career Development

Excellent scientific skills are a critical component of postdoctoral research training. But postdoctoral training needs to goes beyond bench work and data analysis. It should introduce trainees to the many skill sets required to be successful in academic biomedical research, such as industry, education, communications, public policy, scientific writing and editing, as well as entrepreneurial endeavors.

Postdoctoral research training at Mayo Clinic provides outstanding opportunities to hone your scientific skills. It also allows you to develop the other skills needed to be successful in an ever-changing scientific environment.

The Office of Research Postdoctoral Affairs enhances the Mayo Clinic research training experience through the following offerings.

Seminars in career and professional development

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has recognized the importance of a broad research training experience to prepare the next generation of biomedical research leaders. The Career and Professional Development Seminar Series introduces trainees to the wide variety of career opportunities available to individuals that have completed Ph.D. training.

At these seminars, leaders in the fields of research, publishing, education, industry, clinical laboratory medicine and public affairs, among others, share their insights into successful pathways and tool sets needed to succeed in all of these professional endeavors.

Practical applications workshops

Constantly evolving practical workshops are offered to enhance the Mayo Clinic postdoctoral research fellowship experience. For example, daylong workshops are offered that explore the development of a competitive grant proposal or an outstanding scientific publication.

Other workshops address basic lab setup, building an effective work group, mentorship, effective teaching, developing a business plan and putting individual development plans to work. Many other topics are covered, and workshops are created as needed to meet newly developing career trends and needed talent sets.


The Mayo Clinic Research Externship Program is being developed to meet the needs of postdoctoral research fellows by improving their preparation for successful careers in science. The program supplements traditional postdoctoral preparation by illuminating career options different from those chosen by current mentors.

Intensive 100-hour externship experiences are being developed to provide insight and networking opportunities in a number of scientific careers, including:

  • Liberal arts undergraduate education
  • Intellectual property management
  • Biomedical device and drug marketing
  • Science policy at the government and foundation level
  • Scientific publication
  • Clinical professional education
  • Clinical laboratory management

Mayo Fellows Research Day

Every year, research and clinical fellows gather to enjoy a day full of presentations and poster sessions as well as a keynote address from a national scientific leader. Attendees network and discuss their research with colleagues, faculty members, medical students and graduate students.

This is an outstanding way to develop presentation skills and get professional feedback in an open and casual setting.

Young Investigator Research Symposium

The biennial Mayo Clinic Young Investigator Research Symposium takes place during a Saturday and Sunday at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn.

The event provides scientific research education for young investigators. It is also a forum for career and professional development for students, residents, postdoctoral fellows and junior faculty members, and it encourages communication between researchers in related fields. Outstanding achievement also is recognized during the event.