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The ASPET Mentoring Network: Coaching for Career Development is a program designed to supplement the training that graduate students and postdoctoral trainees receive through their university programs. The ASPET Mentoring Network will focus on developing skills needed to succeed scientifically, professionally, and psychologically, including discussions about experiences and pressures faced by groups that are underrepresented in the sciences. As a professional development experience, the program uses a coaching model to help participants develop success skills for a variety of careers, including but not limited to academia, industry, government, and policy.

Graduate students and postdoctoral scientists accepted into the 2023-2024 program will attend several events in association with ASPET 2023 in St. Louis, MO. These will include training, guided discussions, and an informal reception on Wednesday, May 17, and an interactive program on Thursday morning, May 18. During this time, trainees will meet the coaches and other trainees and become part of a six-person coaching group. Each trainee will also meet individually with their coach during ASPET 2023 and participate in virtual group meetings throughout the year, typically held as monthly conference calls or webinars. Group events will be tailored to the specific needs of each coaching group but may focus on work/life balance, interview skills, job searches, networking, grant writing, and other topics frequently identified as important to growth as a professional.


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Who is eligible?

Graduate students and postdoctoral scientists who are members of ASPET in good standing are eligible to apply. Graduate students must have advanced to candidacy at the time of application. Postdoctoral scientists must be no more than 5 years past receipt of their terminal degree at the time of application. If you’re not a member, it’s easy to join! Membership applications must be received by the Mentoring Network program application deadline. Those selected to participate must maintain their membership in good standing during the program. All applicants must be residents of the United States, Canada, or Mexico.

What is required to participate?

You must attend and participate in all Mentoring Network programming during ASPET 2023 and be an active participant with your coaching group for the year following. We are not able to accept participants who cannot attend ASPET 2023 in person or who are only available for a portion of the programming. Please note that the program will begin ahead of the official start of ASPET 2023. Participants should be available between 2 PM and 7 PM local time on Wednesday, May 17 and between 8 AM and 11 AM on Thursday, May 18. Participants are required to be registered attendees at ASPET 2023. Because in-person attendance is required, a limited number of travel awards will be available through the Mentoring Network to help defray travel expenses for those with significant financial need who do not have other support. You will be able to indicate your interest in one of these special travel awards during the application process. We also strongly encourage applications to the ASPET travel awards.

What do previous participants think of the program?
Our group instantly connected with each other, and it was amazing to see how much we all had in common. We support each other and plan monthly goals, which motivates us to achieve them. Most importantly, sharing each other’s experiences helps us gain valuable insights.

- Suleman Hussain, graduate student, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio

One memorable feature of the ASPET Mentoring Network is that it provides an open forum in which to discuss the ways our lives fit in and around science. Even though our discussions have been adeptly facilitated by established pharmacologists as mentors, of value to me has been the opportunity to interact with and learn from my peers. Despite many of us being in different pharmacology-focused fields, it is these relationships that will be most valuable as we all transition towards becoming independent scientists. I recommend participating in this program enthusiastically and without reservation.

- Cam McCarthy, postdoctoral scientist, Augusta University

ASPET’s mentoring network is a valuable platform, not only to pursue career guidance from well-established scientists but also to develop scientific collaborations with peers. I am finding my dedicated coaching group very helpful for designing my outlook towards future opportunities and challenges. I am really happy to have become part of this excellent program.

- Amreen Mughal, graduate student, North Dakota State University

Participating in the ASPET Mentoring Network has significantly expanded my network in the ASPET community and has provided me with wonderful mentors and fellow mentees that support each other both professionally and personally. I’ve enjoyed hearing stories and getting career advice from a diverse group of people who are at different stages of their careers with varied experiences.

- Sophia Kaska, graduate student, Michigan State University

Seeking sincere mentorship from experts in the field is crucial for achieving success. ASPET’S Mentoring Network program has provided me a unique lifelong opportunity to cultivate a strong mentor-mentee relationship and seek guidance on anything and everything for successful professional development. Moreover, the program has brought together trainees who face similar challenges during early scientific careers, which allows us to network with each other, along with mentors and find common solutions to any challenges we face.

- Naeem Patil, postdoctoral scientist, Vanderbilt University Medical Center

When is the deadline?

Applications are due by 8 PM EST Monday, December 12, 2022.

Program contact

For more information contact: Catherine L. Fry, PhD at 

2020-2021 Participants
  • Armina Abbasi
  • Faisal Alamri
  • Vrushank Bhatt
  • Indiwari Gopallawa
  • Mahamudul Haque
  • Moriah Jacobson
  • Rogers Loishooki Laisser
  • Kyle LaPenna
  • Yuening Liu
  • Maria Lopez-Llegus
  • Charlotte Magee
  • Jessica Murray
  • Jia Nong
  • Saeideh Nozohouri
  • Keith Olson
  • Madeline Pantoni
  • Qianman Peng
  • Casey Radice
  • Md Rahatullah Razan
  • Adaku Ume
  • Alicja Urbaniak
  • Menbere Wendimu

2019-2020 Participants

Postdoctoral Scientists

  • Mehrdad Alavi
  • Alicia Avelar
  • Misuk Bae
  • Khalid Garman
  • Steven Hall
  • Lindsey Kuiper
  • Cindy Yanfei Li
  • Benard Ogola
  • Souvarish Sarkar

Graduate Students

  • Stevie Britch
  • Kirti Chahal
  • Magdalena Delgado
  • Ankit Gilani
  • Reiya Hayden
  • Kimberly Holt
  • Alexandros Kokkosis
  • Lakshmi Madhavpeddi
  • Julie Meade
  • Shamema Nasrin
  • Hannah Petrek
  • Priyanka Pinky
  • Akila Ram
  • Larry Rodriguez
  • Sergio Rodriguez
  • Melissa Ruggiero
  • Lauren Russell
  • Ekundayo Samuel
  • Erica Sequeira
  • Ali Sifat
  • Irina Teslenko
  • Daniella Thorsdottir
  • An-Angela Van
  • Abdalla Wedn
  • Edric Winford
2018-2019 Participants

Postdoctoral Scientists

  • Stephanie Davis, University of Kentucky College of Medicine
  • Mohamed Ghonim, Louisiana State University School of Medicine
  • Audrey Hager, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
  • Kathryn Luderman, NINDS/National Institutes of Health
  • Sarah Martin, University of Texas Southwestern
  • Vanessa Minervini, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
  • Natalie Scholpa, University of Arizona

Graduate Students

  • Dina Akasheh, Creighton University
  • Rachel Altshuler, University of Michigan
  • Kibrom Alula, Michigan State University
  • Edwin Arauz, University of Florida
  • Chris Bolden, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
  • Melodi Bowman, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
  • Jonas Calsbeek, University of California, Davis
  • Sarra Djemil, Georgetown University
  • Bettine Gibbs, Butler University
  • Joseph Lebowitz, University of Florida College of Medicine
  • Lakeisha Lewter, University at Buffalo
  • Samantha McClenahan, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
  • Erickson Paragas, Washington State University
  • Yadira Perez-Paramo, Washington State University
  • Rajesh Sanku, Temple University School of Pharmacy
  • Priyanka Swami, North Dakota State University
2017-2018 Participants

Postdoctoral Scientists

  • Oreoluwa Adedoyin, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Michael Berquist II, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
  • Patrick Garcia, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Martha Gay, Howard University
  • T. Lee Gilman, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
  • Joy Guedia, University of British Columbia
  • Luc Rougee, Eli Lilly and Company

Graduate Students

  • Rondine Allen, University of Iowa
  • Jugajyoti Baruah, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Alexa Hendricks, Wake Forest School of Medicine
  • Joseph  Jilek, University of California, Davis
  • Anthony Jones, SUNY at Buffalo
  • Shrinidh Joshi, North Dakota State University
  • Molly McGinnis, Wake Forest School of Medicine
  • Anastasia Robinson, Howard University
  • William Rodemer, Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University
  • Souvarish Sarkar, Iowa State University
  • Mark Shaaya, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Sarah Sottile, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine
  • Venkata Ramana Vaka, University of Mississippi Medical Center
  • Ana Vergara, Washington State University
  • Jaydeep Yadav, Temple University School of Pharmacy
2016-2017 Participants

Postdoctoral Scientists

  • Melissa Barker-Haliski, University of Utah
  • Rebecca Benham Vautour, McLean Hospital/Harvard Medical School
  • Lisa Brents, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences
  • Eman Gohar, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Lauren Haar, Loyola University Chicago
  • Naeem Patil, Vanderbilt University Medical Center
  • Ibolya Rutkai, Tulane University
  • Sherrica Tai, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences 

Graduate Students

  • Seun Ajiboye, Johns Hopkins University
  • Sara Humphreys, Washington State University
  • Suleman Hussain, University of Texas at San Antonio
  • Ram Kandasamy, Washington State University
  • Sophia Kaska, Michigan State University
  • Cameron Kieffer, Creighton University
  • Cam McCarthy, Georgia Regents University
  • Walatta Mesquitta, University of Wisconsin-Madison
  • Amreen Mughal, North Dakota State University
  • Anh Phan, Loyola University Chicago
  • Angel Rubio, Boston University
  • Tracey Suter, Brown University
  • Zachary Tibbs, University of Alabama at Birmingham
  • Alexandria Trujillo, SUNY at Buffalo
  • Saurabh Vispute, St. John's University
  • Chen-Shan Woodcock, University of Pittsburgh

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