It’s Ice skating season!

Ice Skating:

Dec 1, 2019 @ Riverbank State Park (Organizers: Nicole Perry-Hauser; Networking & Community Building Committee) 

Some photos of our most recent Ice-skating outing ! Great turn out and a ton of fun !

Women in Science Panel and Networking Reception

Women in Science Panel and Networking Reception

August 28th, 2019 @ VEC, CUMC Campus (Organizers: Aditi Falnikar, Jami Jackson Mulgrave, Upasana Roy, JJ Teoh, Gagan Sidhu, Research & Professional Development Committee) 

The Women in Science Panel hosted by the CUPS Research & Professional Development Committee was a success, and we had great turnout. A huge thanks to our panelists Mari Millery, Anne-Catrin Uhlemann and Lata Phadtare, for sharing their experiences in academia and industry with us. We had some insightful conversations about the barriers faced by women in STEM, and ways to promote diversity and inclusivity. Thanks to all attendees for their support and participation.


  1. Anne-Catrin Uhlemann, MD, PhD – Assistant Professor of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases, Columbia University
  2. Mari Millery, PhD – President, M Research Studio
  3. Lata Phadtare, MS, PMP – IT Manager Medical Informatics, Biorepository Manager at Janssen Research & Development, L.L.C.

Take-home messages:

  1. Having diverse groups is not enough, we also need to ensure inclusivity.
  2. Seek out good mentorship and support systems.
  3. Don’t feel bad about asking for help when you need it! 

This event was sponsored by Thermo Fisher.







Science Trivia Night

Science Trivia Night:

September 24th, 2019 @ Black & White (Organizers: Outreach & Communications Committee) 

Returning back to work after the summer can be hard for everyone, that’s why at CUPS we try to bring you as much fun as possible! At the end of this summer season the Outreach & Communications Committee prepared a Science Trivia Night to brush up a little bit our “general” scientific knowledge.  We enjoyed the fun side of science, tried to break some science myths and highlighted some of the amazing work that women scientists have been doing for years. All mixed with some fantastic beers!








Stay tuned for more Science Trivia!








Summer Social

Summer Social:

June-August, 2019 @ NYC (Organizers: Networking & Community Building Committee) 

The Summer was full of fun events for Columbia Postdocs led by our favorite Networking & Community Building Committee team: Olaya, Alessia, John, Dhru, Alex, Holly, Nicolas and Nicole.


We kicked off the Summer with a Soccer & Picnic Combo Event at Riverbank State Park on June 22. We played soccer, card games, shared food and enjoyed the super sunny weather.


On July 23, fans of the traditional Disney movie “The Lion King” got to discover the 2019 computer-animated remake of the movie in a legendary Movie Night outing. Nostalgia levels: off the charts!


We also got to enjoy another great Happy Hour at one of our favorite spots: the beer garden of Bierstrasse Harlem on August 2nd. Great attendance once again!


Oh and that’s not all! We also had PostdoQs and OPA hosting a Pride Month Happy Hour in June while a few lucky attendants got to watch the movie “Ralph Breaks the Internet“, Free Movie in the Park! (July, Pier 46 at Hudson River Park).

Stay tuned and check out our social media posts  for more social events coming up soon!



Financial Planning Seminar Series

Financial Planning Seminar Series:

August 8th, 2019 @ VEC, CUMC Campus (Organizers: Olaya Fernandez Gayol, Regina Martuscello, Advocacy Committee) 


The Advocacy Committee is introducing a brand new series of talks aimed at postdocs to learn about different aspects of everyday life in the United States, from personal finances to taxes, insurance and housing.

For the first talk in this brand new series, we received Leonard Berman from First Manhattan Co. In this seminar, Leonard covered the basics of savings, investments and personal finance management giving postdocs practical tools to help manage their finances in such an expensive city like NYC!

Take-home messages:

  1. Invest in your retirement early and often, the power of the compound will make your money grow.
  2. Always make the highest amount of matching funds into your retirement – its free money!
  3. The market fluctuates. Don’t panic. Don’t sell at the bottom.

Stay tuned for our next session that will cover “Insurance in the USA” in the Fall!





All the information given in this seminar is for educational purposes only, and not to be considered as financial advice. Neither we (CUPS) nor the speaker (Leonard Berman) have any responsability in the consequences of your actions derived from the information obtained in this seminar or elsewhere.








Careers Beyond the Postdoc

Careers Beyond the Postdoc:

May 31st, 2019 @ Alumni Auditorium, CUMC Campus (Organizers: Upasana Roy, Aditi Falnikar & Alex Karambelas, Research & Professional Development Committee) 

One of our CUPS flagship events, Careers Beyond the Postdoc, happened last Friday in the beautiful Alumni Auditorium. A full house with over 60 attendants and 25 speakers.


Careers Beyond the Postdoc‘ mission is to help connect current postdocs with future non-academic careers, including (among others): data science, regulatory affairs, medical writing, editing, scientific consulting, science outreach, biotech, tech transfer, and many more!


We invited 25 professionals to talk about their role and responsibilities and how they navigated their career path post-PhD. Held every two years, the event is always a huge success, bringing in a wide variety of professionals and interested postdocs across all Columbia campuses.



Warm thank you to all our speakers for sharing their experience with our postdocs!

Judith Absalon, Pfizer – Senior Medical Director

Yana Zorina, Acorda Therapeutics – Scientist-I

Corentin Moevus, C16 Biosciences – Scientist

Anil Vaidya, Pfizer – Director of Regulatory Affairs

Hui Wang, Regeneron – Manager, Regulatory Affairs

Chiara Bertipaglia, Zuckerman Institute – Scientific Program Manager

Joan Martinez, Columbia Technology Ventures – Technology Licensing Officer

Ananda Ghosh, NYU – Business Development Professional

Shachi Bhatt, Rockefeller Press – Scientific Editor

Alejandro Montenegro-Montero, Health Science Reports – Scientific Editor

Michelle Benson, Columbia University – Assistant Director for Research Integrity and Compliance

Shenell D. Evans, The Floating Hospital – Adjunct Professor of Clinical Psychology

Banke Fagbemi, New York Genome Center – Director of Business Development

Deb Aronson, Grey Health Group – VP, Medical Director

Ross Fadely, Insight Data Science – Data Scientist

Ken McCallum, Uncommon Goods – Data Scientist

Odaelys Walwyn, RockEdu – Scientist/Educator

Alfred Adomako, Lockwood Medical Communications Group – Associate Scientific Director

Christopher Aston, Columbia University EH&S – Associate Director

Peter Caracappa, Columbia University RSP – Chief Radiation Safety Officer

Daniel Lewis, Cello Health BioConsulting – Consultant

Malcolm Nason, BonBouton – VP R&D

For questions about this event or similar future events, please contact us: [email protected]

Social Media for Academics

Social Media for Academics:

May 23rd, 2019, 6-8pm @ Fairchild, Morningside Campus (Organizer: Micaela Cunha & Alex Karambelas, Research & Professional Development Committee) 

Wondering about how to best use your digital presence to advance your career? You are not alone! Managing your activity in digital platforms such as LinkedIn, Twitter, ResearchGate, or others, can be daunting! 




This is why we hosted a Q&A panel with active social media users with an academic background, Mariam Aly and Alejandro de la Puente, to discuss different perspectives on how to leverage your online presence for your professional growth. 


Tips we learned:

– social media is great to grow your network

cultivate connections, build relationships

quantity vs. quality

choose who to follow, prioritize, establish rules not to be overwhelmed

– do it because you like it, it’s not essential

Our speakers:

Mariam Aly  

Mariam Aly is an Assistant Professor in Psychology at Columbia University. She is passionate about science outreach and communication, and the importance of happy and healthy lab environments.

She uses Twitter in two main ways: 1) one aimed at science communication and career advancement — sharing and discussing papers, broadening her scientific network, and discussing controversial topics in her field. 2) Her other goal in using Twitter is to expose the human side of science by talking about imposter syndrome, mental health struggles, and the ups and downs of academia.


Alejandro de la Puente  

Alejandro de la Puente is the Associate Director of the Science Alliance at the New York Academy of Sciences (NYAS). He received his PhD in theoretical physics. At NYAS, his goal is to provide all Science Alliance members with professional development programs and opportunities to help them grow their careers. Alejandro’s passion and mission is to help young STEM students and professionals achieve their full potential while increasing diversity and inclusivity in the STEM ecosystem in the U.S. and the wider world.

Spring Yankees outing

Spring Yankees outing:

May 18th, 2019 @ Yankee Stadium (Organizer: Holly Hunsberger, Networking & Community Building Committee) 

Couple weeks ago a bunch of us ventured to the other side of the river — direction Yankee Stadium for a game against Tampa Bay.

Beautiful spring day for a baseball game. The pinstripe pass tickets allowed us to view the game from multiple terrace areas while enjoying a free beer.

Great atmosphere and good chance for people to get outside and out of the lab!


CUPS/OPA Annual Ski trip

CUPS/OPA Annual Ski trip:

February 10th, 2019 @ Hunter Mountain (Organizers: OPA & CUPS) 

We’re catching up and talking a little about some of our earlier events this year, before this blog was born (born May 2019).

One of the big events earlier this year was the Annual Postdoc Ski Trip !

In February, Ben (VP of CUPS at Morningside) and other postdocs went to Hunter Mountain in upstate New York for skiing and snowboarding!

There was beautiful weather and plenty of snow. Everyone got to “chill” (yep..:)) during lunch and discuss science on the lifts.

Looking forward to going again next year!

CUPS 2019 first Art outing – Whitney Museum

CUPS very first Art outing – Whitney Museum:

May 24th, 2019 @ Whitney Museum (Organizer: Dhru Deb, Networking & Community Building Committee) 

A couple weeks ago, CUPS launched “CUPS HEART“, a series of CUPS-organized visits for postdocs to the most distinguished art museums and galleries in New York City!

A few of us headed downtown to Chelsea to the iconic Whitney Museum. On Friday nights they have a great “Pay as you wish” deal from 7pm-9:30pm.

There were many interesting exhibitions, the coolest one was called “Spilling Over: Painting Color in the 1960s” – which was a collection of paintings from the 60s that used bold & intense colors to activate perception and articulate new questions “specifically its relation to race, gender, and the coding of space.”

Work by Emma Amos,

We also got to enjoy the stunning views of Hudson river and High Line from the open terrace!

Stay tuned for more CUPS art events this year! – Contact Dhru for any questions or suggestions.

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