Junior Scientists

Planned events for RNA 2017

Pre-meeting activity: Prague Scavenger Hunt
Our annual pre-meeting activity will give you the opportunity to explore the magnificent city of Prague with all of your senses. You will travel through time, experiencing medieval history all the way through to modern times. This interactive tour will be even more fun because you will be surrounded by fellow junior scientists. You will be astounded by the breathtaking sights, sounds, and tastes of this intercultural university city in the heart of Europe.
Sign-up for the scavenger hunt here: https://goo.gl/forms/l2HYizGwwa8UGAs53
Spots will be assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. The scavenger hunt will start at 11 a.m. and will include a stop to please your taste buds, so plan travel accordingly.

Junior Scientist Social
This junior scientist-only social is a great opportunity to meet your peers, unwind, socialize, and find people to explore Prague with. Come have a drink with us!

Career Development Workshop – Combating Impostor Syndrome
Have you ever felt like you’re not quite as qualified as people think you are? Do you fear being exposed as a “fraud”? Our annual Career Development Workshop will address what “Impostor Syndrome” is, share stories of scientists who have struggled with and worked through it, and discuss methods to combat it.

Junior Scientist Committee Representatives

Allison Didychuk – Graduate Student Representative
I’m a fifth year graduate student in Sam Butcher’s lab at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I study early steps in spliceosome assembly, focusing on how U6 snRNA is incorporated into the U6 and U4/U6 snRNPs. I have served on the RNA Society Junior Scientist Committee, and I hope that my experience on the committee can facilitate the best possible experience for junior scientists at RNA 2017. If you are interested in joining the committee, please find me so we can chat at the meeting!


Fadi Marayati – Graduate Student Representative
I am originally from Aleppo, Syria. I received my Bachelor of Science in Biology at the American University of Beirut, Lebanon. In 2012, I moved to North Carolina to study for my Master of Science in Biology at the University of North Carolina – Greensboro. I am currently a 2nd year Ph.D. student in the department of Biology at Wake Forest University where I work at the intersection of RNA Biology and Epigenetics; I focus primarily on the fission yeast MTREC and EJC orthologs and their role in the maturation of meiotic mRNA transcripts during meiosis. As a Junior Scientist Committee member, I plan to continue the society’s solid career development efforts and stress the importance of engaging young scientists through social media and online workshops, outside of the time frame of the yearly meeting. I hope that young scientists can gain a strong sense of inclusion in the society, and can benefit from the career development workshops to see their future in the field from the perspective of academia and industry professionals.

Petra Beznosková – Postdoc Representative
I am a senior Ph.D. student with over 6 years of training in gene expression studies conducted in the Laboratory of Regulation of Gene Expression at the Institute of Microbiology in Prague under the supervision of Leoš Valášek, Ph.D. My main research focus is on stop codon readthrough. Besides my research, I have been involved in promotional and educational events organized by the public relations department of the Institute of Microbiology (events like “Science open for public”, “Bring your children to work”, etc.). I am now also involved in the European mobility program for young scientists “ERASMUS+” and supervise an intern from the United Kingdom. I envision the Junior Scientists as a community inside the RNA Society that will be a platform for young researchers to actively support each other. As a Junior Scientist Committee member based in a heart of Europe, I would like to emphasize more geopolitical differences in opportunities for young RNA scientists. I am very excited that my hometown will host the RNA Society meeting next year- I look forward to showing you the many beautiful sights Prague has to offer!

Kris Brannan Postdoc Representative
I am currently a third year postdoctoral fellow with Gene Yeo’s group at the University of California, San Diego.   I am interested in understanding how protein-RNA interactions control gene expression programs in the human central nervous system, and how these interactions are disrupted in neurodegenerative diseases.  As a member of the RNA Society Junior Scientist Committee, I hope to facilitate networking opportunities for students and postdoctoral fellows working in the RNA field.  I am excited about the opportunity to plan activities and generate online content to expand this collaborative community of young scientists as we prepare to meet in Prague in 2017!

Faculty Advisors: Katrin Karbstein (Scripps Research Institute Florida) and Samuel Butcher (University of Wisconsin-Madison)

Help us build the junior scientist community throughout the year!

Stay connected to your colleagues throughout the year via social media (we’re on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn). We encourage discussions and posts- feel free to post your successes (such as recently published papers) and your questions. The Facebook page is public, so we would like to highlight and celebrate RNA science on this page.  The LinkedIn group is private, so feel free to post more specific questions, topics, or job postings.

Email: junior_scientists@nullwww2.rnasociety.org

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RNASocietyJuniorScientists/

LinkedIn: RNA Society Junior Scientists (https://www.linkedin.com/groups/8152215)

Twitter: @jrRNAscientists