Postdocs: Party of Four


Fulfilling his promise to strengthen Scripps Institution of Oceanography’s academic ranks, Scripps Director Tony Haymet has initiated institutional funding for the recruitment of four new postdoctoral scholars.

Postdoctoral employees, typically recent Ph.D. graduates, are experienced, productive members of research teams, and are considered by Haymet to be a valuable asset to Scripps’s research enterprise.

“Since my appointment a year ago as director of Scripps, I've envisioned enhancing the postdoctoral program to further build our base of academic talent, attract the most diverse pool of applicants, and help prepare Scripps for the future of ocean, atmosphere, and earth science research,” said Haymet. “The idea is that these postdocs are funded in part by Scripps discretionary or philanthropic funds. These four recent recruits are stellar additions to our academic team.”

The four postdoctoral scholars are: Qian Li, working with Peter Franks in biological oceanography; Anne-Claire Baudoux, working with Farooq Azam in marine microbiology; Katrine Lehmann, working with V. Ramanathan in atmospheric sciences, and Phil Livermore, working with Glenn Ierley in geophysics.

Scripps’s commitment of institutional support for these positions is significant because postdoctoral employee recruitment is typically funded entirely by the scientists who seek them, which can be a drain on already sparse resources needed to conduct research.

The four postdoctoral scholars, the last of which arrived at Scripps in early August, were selected from a competitive pool of more than 100 applicants.

Baudoux, whose work aims to explore the ecology and role of viruses in the oceans, said she is excited to join Scripps’s scientific community.

“Being a postdoc at Scripps is a great experience,” said Baudoux. “I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to work in such stimulating environment. And the outstanding ocean view I have from my office reminds me everyday of the most important question of my research: unraveling the mysteries of the functioning of the ocean.”

Fellow postdoctoral scholar, Katrine Lehmann, agrees. “I am very excited to work here at Scripps with so many excellent scientists,” said Lehmann. “I hope to learn more about experimental techniques and to broaden and deepen my knowledge of atmospheric science. I think La Jolla is probably one of the most beautiful places in the world to work."

Baudoux and Lehmann are not alone in their positive review of Scripps. In February 2007, Scripps was ranked eleventh best in North America and fourth best on the West Coast in the “Best Places to Work for Postdocs" survey published by The Scientist magazine.

--Shannon Casey

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