We strongly support building a welcoming and diverse community within the lab, the field of neuroscience, and society at large. We welcome people of all nationalities, genders, sexual orientations, races, ethnicities, and religions.
Loren Hoffmann, PhD
Fantao Meng, PhD
Undergraduate Research Assistants:
MacKenzie Howard, PhD (P.I. of the Howard Lab)
Jessica Chancey, PhD (postdoc in the Howard Lab)
INS graduate student rotators:
Sophie Sánchez (Fall 2017)
Meg Donahue (Fall 2018)
Advice for Applicants (modified from my colleague Loren Frank’s website at UCSF):
Suggestions targeted at current undergraduates who are interested in applying to positions in labs:
1. Read (or at least skim) papers from the laboratory before you apply. Make sure that the sort of work they do is exciting to you and that you will be willing to put in the time and the effort required to learn about the science done in the lab.
2. Do not write a general application letter that you send to a number of labs. Instead, explain why you think you are interested in the work being done in the laboratory to which you are applying. It helps when writing to a P.I. to include a copy of your transcript (unofficial is fine), your CV, and a brief letter of interest (< 1 page) that outlines your future goals, what you will bring to the lab, what you hope to get out of your experience in the lab, and how much time you will have to devote to lab work
3. If you are planning to go to graduate school but want to work in a lab for a year or two first, consider working for two years in that position. It takes a long time to get up to speed in any lab, and it can take a year just to build up the expertise necessary to be useful. Two years is enough to accomplish something and even perhaps write a paper. Furthermore, it will give you the time you need to make sure that a research Ph.D. is the right direction for you.
Advice for those considering graduate school:
1. Research experience is very important. If you do not have much research experience, you should strongly consider working in a lab for a year or two before you go to graduate school. Not only will this help your application, but it will give you a much better sense for your own drive to do research and to take on the substantial amount of work required to earn a Ph.D.
2. The ability to think quantitatively is essential to most experimental neuroscience work, and the more you know coming in to graduate school, the better off you will be. Coupled with this, the ability to write your own code to visualize and quantify your data is invaluable. Strongly consider taking math classes (including statistics) and learning how to program (e.g. learn Python or Matlab).