Society news briefs: August 2021
If you’re a member, you should be in the know. Find out everything that’s been going on lately with the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology.
Advocate with the ASBMB
The American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Public Affairs Advisory Committee, the society’s advocacy arm, welcomes applications from members who are interested in serving on the committee. The PAAC sets the society’s policy agenda and leads its interactions with Congress, the White House and federal science funding agencies, such as the National Institutes of Health and the National Science Foundation. Advocacy experience is not required, but an interest in and basic understanding of the policymaking process are helpful. Send applications to ASBMB Public Affairs Director Ben Corb.
Supporting junior scientists
The ASBMB advocacy team submitted a letter in May to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services advocating for international students and scholars, who frequently face visa-processing delays and difficulty obtaining work visas after degree completion. Read the letter here.
Heck joins MCP
Albert Heck of Utrecht University began a five-year term in April as an associate editor for the ASBMB journal Molecular & Cellular Proteomics. Heck is director of the Netherlands Proteomic Center. His lab is a leader in proteomics and the study of protein structure and interactions using mass spectrometry.
New publications department employee
Chengmin Jiang joined the ASBMB as assistant publications director in June. Prior to joining the ASBMB, he worked as senior development editor at the American Chemical Society focusing on manuscript triage workflow and manuscript transfer as well as journal strategy and data analysis. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Two new MOSAIC scholars
In February, we announced the first five members of the inaugural cohort for the society’s Maximizing Opportunities for Scientific and Academic Independent Careers, or MOSAIC, program. In April, we welcomed two new participants.
Josefina Inés del Mármol is a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Vanessa Ruta at The Rockefeller University, where she is studying the structural mechanisms of odorant recognition by olfactory receptors. She was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She earned an undergraduate degree in biology from the University of Buenos Aires and a Ph.D. in molecular neurobiology and biophysics at Rockefeller, during which time she was one of the Howard Hughes Medical Institute’s inaugural international student research fellows. She is a mentor for the Científico Latino Project and a volunteer for the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science.
“I am excited to join a generation of scientists with heightened awareness and skills to promote diversity and inclusion in the biomedical workforce,” del Mármol said. “To that aim, this award will provide me and fellow MOSAIC scholars with formal training and community resources to become active agents of social and academic change, while supporting our professional development to succeed as independent investigators.”
Chelsey C. Spriggs is a postdoctoral fellow in the lab of Billy Tsai at the University of Michigan, where she studies polyomavirus trafficking to the nucleus. A native of Detroit, Spriggs earned her bachelor’s in microbiology from Michigan State University and her Ph.D. in microbiology and immunology from Northwestern University, where she studied human papillomavirus infection and tumorigenesis. Last year, she led the fundraising team for the inaugural Black in Microbiology Week, which increased the visibility of Black microbiologists.
“I am so excited to be a part of such an amazing program! This NIH MOSAIC award will provide the career development and training required to ensure my future success as an independent investigator,” Spriggs said. “In addition, I look forward to networking and building community with other MOSAIC scholars as we work to improve diversity and inclusion in science.”
Organize an event with the ASBMB
The society provides a variety of opportunities for members to bring people together, both virtually and in person, to share their research and make connections. From webinars to networking events to conferences over several days, the ASBMB will help you to bring your event to fruition. Propose an event at asbmb.org/meetings-events/propose-event.
Save the date! We’re going to Philly
The 2022 ASBMB Annual Meeting will be held April 2-5 in Philadelphia. For the final year, we’ll be meeting with our sister societies at the Experimental Biology meeting. Put this interdisciplinary event on your calendar. We look forward to seeing you! Sign up for email updates.
Outreach grants for student chapters
The ASBMB Student Chapter Outreach Grants support chapters doing outreach activities in their communities. This year, we welcome proposals for virtual as well as in-person or hybrid programming and encourage applicants to be creative in their approaches. The deadline to apply for a grant worth up to $500 is Oct.1. Visit the Outreach grant website.
Did you miss “Picture a Scientist”?
Late last year, the ASBMB Women in Biochemistry and Molecular Biology Committee hosted a screening and panel discussion about the award-winning film “Picture a Scientist.” The film is now available for viewing on the PBS website and soon will be available for streaming on Netflix. Watch the ASBMB event featuring director Sharon Shattuck.
Take the stress out of finding great candidates and looking for a new job
The ASBMB’s career center provides you the opportunity to browse jobs, post positions, have your résumé critiqued (for free) and more. Visit careers.asbmb.org.
Share your science outreach initiative!
Are you doing science outreach in your community? Are you running your own science café or creating a program that you know will make an impact and want to share it? We want to know about it! Complete the form and let us help promote your important work.
ASBMB certification exam by the numbers
All students who are enrolled in an ASBMB-accredited degree program are invited to take the certification exam in their junior or senior year. The exam has been designed to test students’ knowledge and understanding of the core competencies in biochemistry and molecular biology developed by the ASBMB and its members. Here’s a glimpse at the 2021 exam:
- 1st year of online delivery
- 938 test takers
- 95 volunteer question writers and scorers
- 97% of scoring volunteers from 2020 also scored in 2021
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These funding mechanisms have been underutilized. The ASBMB public affairs staff offers recommendations to change that.