Clifton “Clif” Poodry, Ph.D., director of the NIGMS Division of Training, Workforce Development, and Diversity, retired earlier this month. Although he’s left federal service, Clif is continuing to pursue his long-held interest in improving science education as a senior fellow at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
Throughout his nearly 20 years at NIGMS, Clif championed—and in many cases, led—activities to build the biomedical research workforce of the future. This included initiatives for training and mentoring students from groups that are underrepresented in biomedical and behavioral research and advising on NIH-wide programs, such as the newly announced Building Infrastructure Leading to Diversity program.
Clif has long been committed to using scientific approaches to understand interventions that promote interest in and pursuit of research careers. He consistently encouraged staff and colleagues to read the scientific literature on training and workforce diversity in order to develop a better understanding of biomedical workforce issues and challenges so that we could create and/or modify programs accordingly.
Clif’s long and distinguished career includes time as a biology professor, department chair, associate vice-chancellor for student affairs, and NIGMS grantee at the University of California, Santa Cruz. In the early 1980s, he served a 2-year stint at the National Science Foundation, where he helped create a program that later became a model for the NIH diversity supplement program.
Clif is a great and natural mentor who has touched the lives of numerous students and colleagues across the country, as well as those of us here at NIGMS and NIH. Many of those he mentored have gone on to positions in academia, government and the private sector.
Clif has had a huge impact in many areas, including the education and training of students from underrepresented groups, and we look forward to building on his legacy.
You may be interested in these recent funding opportunity announcements:
NIH Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K)
NIGMS is participating in additional BD2K programs, an NIH-wide initiative that enables the biomedical research community to use various types of big data for research:
- Development of an NIH BD2K Data Discovery Index Coordination Consortium (U24)
- BD2K-LINCS-Perturbation Data Coordination and Integration Center (U54)
- Mentored Career Development Award in Biomedical Big Data Science for Clinicians and Doctorally Prepared Scientists (K01)
- Courses for Skills Development in Biomedical Big Data Science (R25)
- Open Educational Resources for Biomedical Big Data (R25)
Research Centers for Pharmacogenomics in Precision Medicine (P50)
Purpose: This program will support a limited number of large-scale centers to conduct cutting-edge research studies designed to push the boundaries for understanding and predicting therapeutic drug responses.
Letters of intent due date: 30 days before the application due dates
Application due dates: September 25, 2014; September 25, 2015; and September 25, 2016.
NIGMS contact: Rochelle Long, 301-594-3827.
The National Advisory General Medical Sciences Council will have its winter meeting on January 23-24, 2014. Although the first day is a closed session for the review and discussion of grant applications, Friday’s portion of the meeting is open to the public. The agenda includes presentations on NIGMS programs and policy changes as well as a public comment period.
You may attend the open session in person or watch the presentations and discussions live or later.
We’re recruiting for two outstanding individuals to serve as branch chiefs within our Division of Biomedical Technology, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology (BBCB), where they will oversee the scientific and administrative management of either the Biomedical Technology Branch or the Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Branch. In addition, they will be responsible for advising, directing and evaluating program activities for a portfolio of research grants in one of the branch areas.
The vacancy announcement, which includes detailed descriptions of the job requirements and application procedures, is scheduled to post this weekend on USAJOBS.gov and remain open for a short period. We’ll update this post early next week with a link to the announcement and the closing date. In preparing an application, Applying for Scientific Administration Jobs at NIGMS may offer other useful information.
Now is a particularly exciting time for the division. In previous posts, I’ve talked about our efforts in big data and open science. But these are just two areas of BBCB interest. The main focus of the Biomedical Technology Branch is supporting the research and development of new or improved instruments, methods and approaches that have broad application to biomedical research. The Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Branch is primarily focused on funding basic biomedical research that leads to an integrative understanding of biomedical systems, as well as funding research to create or maintain databases and to develop methods to manage, visualize and analyze data.