Research!America recently announced their Inaugural Advocacy Academy. This opportunity is open to postdoctoral fellows and is designed to expose early career scientists to science advocacy, outreach, and policy and includes a paid trip to Washington DC! I have participated in other advocacy trainings (through ASBMB and ASPET – both of these are open to graduate students also) and have found the experience both rewarding and educational. While we all may rather stay in the research lab conducting experiments, I believe it is our duty as scientists to educate the public and our elected officials as to issues involving science education, funding, policy etc.
Research!America’s announcements is as follows:
Research!America is pleased to announce an exciting new program to introduce and engage early-career scientists in research advocacy and science policy. The 2013 Research!America Advocacy Academy is a unique opportunity for postdoctoral fellows in the health and biomedical sciences to learn about how to best incorporate advocacy and effective communications into their role as a scientist.
The 2013 class of up to 12 Research!America advocates will participate in a two-day Washington, DC, program from September 11-12, 2013. Participants will learn about the federal budget and appropriations process, tools for effective science communication and outreach as well as how to engage with elected representatives on scientific and research issues. The program includes visiting Capitol Hill to meet with policy makers and congressional staff members, providing participants with a first-hand experience advocating for health research. Rounding out this unique Washington experience, participants will attend Research!America’s National Health Research Forum where top leaders in government, industry, academia and patient organizations engage in moderated conversations on issues of importance to the research ecosystem.
Upon completion of the program, participants will become Science Advocates for Research!America. Advocates will remain engaged with Research!America staff, receive ongoing action alerts and learn about ways to involve their home institution’s research community in effective science advocacy.
All travel expenses (transportation, lodging and meals) will be provided and arranged by Research!America through an educational grant provided by Pfizer. This year’s program is limited to 12 exceptional postdoctoral researchers with a dedicated interest in becoming active advocates for science.
Tuesday, September 10, 2013: Evening arrivals; hotel accommodations provided
Wednesday, September 11, 2013: Advocacy Academy Program
- Policy & legislative overview
- Advocating for science on Capitol Hill
- Effective science communication & engagement with the media
- Preparing for meetings with policy makers
- Career Enhancement: Roundtable discussion with scientific journal editors
- Reception and dinner with Research!America Board members and leaders
Thursday, September 12, 2013: Research!America Advocacy Day
- Meet with Members of Congress and/or staff on Capitol Hill Attend Research!America’s National Health Research Forum
- Late afternoon departures
You must have completed your MD, PhD or equivalent doctoral degree and currently hold an appointment as a postdoctoral research fellow at one of Research!America’s member organizations (please click here for a list of eligible academic universities, hospitals, and independent research institutes).
Application Deadline: July 3, 2013, 5 p.m. EDT
Please submit the following items to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line ‘Advocacy Academy Application – Your Name.’ All materials must be received by 5 p.m. EDT on July 3, 2013.
- A curriculum vitae/resume (2 pg. maximum)
- A statement of interest in the program, which includes your desire to be involved in science policy and advocacy activities, and a summary of relevant activities or employment outside of the classroom or laboratory (1 pg. maximum).
- A letter of recommendation from your current Principal Investigator or research leader.
For any questions or more information on the program, please contact Adam M. Katz, Policy and Advocacy Specialist email@example.com
A selection committee will review submissions and extend invitations to 12 exceptional candidates. If accepted, participants are expected to obtain appropriate authorization to travel to Washington and participate in the program. Research!America will coordinate all travel arrangements with participants.