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Info for New and Current Postdocs, Prospective Postdocs, and Postdoc Alumni

One of the main goals of the UIC Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (OPA) and Postdoctoral Association (PDA) is to build a vibrant and engaged postdoc community within UIC, while providing outstanding research, career, and professional development training activities for postdocs. We also actively collaborate with other Chicago-area and Big Ten institutions to expand opportunities for postdocs.

Scroll down to find resources if you are a prospective postdoc or a new postdoc at UIC, as well as resources for our diverse community of postdocs and alumni.

UIC Postdocs, at a Glance Heading link

As of April 15, 2022, there are 269 postdocs at UIC. A pie chart demonstrates that 44% of postdocs are appointed in Medicine, 19% in LAS, 9% in Pharmacy, 8% in Engineering, 5% in Applied Health Sciences, 3% in Public Health, and 12% in all other colleges and units. A bar chart demonstrates that 87% of postdocs are appointed as postdoc research associates (employee status), 60% of postdocs are international postdocs, and 30% of postdocs are underrepresented in academia

Although the majority of postdocs at UIC are in biomedical fields, we have postdocs appointed in many STEM, humanities, liberal arts, and social science fields. The goal of OPA and the PDA is to foster an open and welcoming community of postdocs and a robust professional development training program that will be beneficial to ALL postdocs, regardless of field of study or future career choice, by focusing on building key skills and preparing you for the next step in your career through career exploration and job search preparation.

Where do UIC’s postdocs land after their postdoc training? Thanks to Academic Analytics, now we know! Academic Analytics located 10 years of UIC postdoc alumni, 1041 postdocs, through 2020. UIC postdoc alumni are located in institutions and companies all over the world! The top 10 employers of UIC’s postdocs are: UIC, Northwestern University, The University of Chicago, Abbott, AbbVie, Rush University, Harvard University, Pfizer, Ohio State University, and the University of Arizona.

Of 1633 postdoc alumni departing from UIC through 2020, a pie chart shows that of those located, 60% are employed in academia, 32% in industry, 4% in government, 3% in non-profit, and 1% in another sector. A bar chart shows that 66% of alumni were located, 80% stayed in the USA, 25% stayed in Chicago, 22% are tenure-track faculty members, and 14% stayed at UIC


To build a strong postdoc community and help connect postdocs across campus, the PDA publishes a quarterly newsletter to celebrate postdoc accomplishments, recap events and topics of interest to postdocs, and showcase outstanding postdoc alumni. The PDA also conducts surveys to assess the needs of postdocs on campus.

Prospective Postdocs Heading link

Thinking about pursuing your postdoctoral training at UIC? Check out these positions open currently and learn more about why you should choose UIC and things to consider when applying for postdoc positions:

Open Postdoc Positions

New Postdocs Heading link

Are you a new postdoc at UIC? Tell us a little bit about yourself by filling out this short entrance survey.

The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (OPA) hosts an hour-long New Postdoc Orientation on a bimonthly basis. Join the listserv and keep an eye on your email for announcements regarding upcoming orientations. You can register for the next new postdoc orientation session by completing the postdoc entrance survey.

Resources for a Diverse Community of Postdocs at UIC Heading link

“UIC is one of the nation’s most diverse public research universities. As a federally designated Minority Serving Institution, we strive to promote an organizational culture and structure, grounded on the principles of access, equity and inclusion. UIC welcomes students, staff and faculty from a variety of racial, ethnic, and class backgrounds, gender identities, sexual orientations, and abilities to cultivate a diverse learning community where human differences are embraced and neither difference nor disadvantage stands in the way of intellectual and professional achievement. Furthermore, we believe that by drawing upon these diverse perspectives, we are able to expand frontiers of knowledge as a national leader of innovative scholarship.” From the Office of the Vice Provost for Diversity

UIC Postdoc Alumni: Leaving Your Postdoc Position and Staying Connected! Heading link

When you are leaving your postdoctoral position, there are several important steps that need to be taken prior to separating from your position and/or the university:

  1. Check out the employee self-exit checklist and resignation/retirement form, which are located under the separation tab of the HR forms site.
    • According to the check list, a signed resignation letter should be submitted at least two weeks in advance of your last day of work. The resignation/retirement form or letter must specify the last date of work. E-mail is sufficient however employees can complete the resignation/retirement form.
  2. Reach out to your departmental HR representative, who will be able to advise on any questions you may have.
  3. Please take a few minutes to respond to the UIC Postdoc Exit Survey, and answer a few questions about:
    • Your contact and personal information
    • Your experience as a postdoc at UIC
    • Your job search and next position
    • Your willingness to stay in touch with the UIC OPA & PDA
  4. We would love to stay in touch, so if you’d like to stay connected, please join the UIC Postdoctoral Association LinkedIn group!

Important Notes:

  • Postdoctoral research associates hired on or after 8/16/2019 shall be ineligible for vacation termination pay and their vacation leave shall not transfer to any position that is not postdoctoral (i.e. postdoctoral research associates are ineligible to be paid-out for unused vacation time after ending their postdoctoral appointment).
  • Postdocs who terminate their position with the university MAY be eligible for COBRA continuation of insurance coverage. The Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act (COBRA) provides eligible covered State of Illinois Employees Group Insurance Program (SEGIP) participants and their eligible dependents the opportunity to temporarily extend their health coverage when coverage would otherwise end due to certain qualifying events. To be eligible for COBRA, you (or your eligible dependent) must be enrolled in a SEGIP health plan the day before the qualifying event occurs.

Alumni Spotlight Heading link


Peyton Bohnsack, Ph.D. - Biotechnology Equity Research Associate, Cowen and Company (UIC Postdoc 2017-2020) Heading link

I interviewed and got hired during the pandemic and it requires a little bit of adjustment and a little more work but is definitely doable. The best advice I can give postdocs who are looking to break into equity research is to have a demonstrated interest in the public markets and investing in biotechnology companies…I’d recommend getting involved in the UIC Postdoctoral Association as many of the people I worked with over the years at the PDA helped me enormously with preparing for job interviews and giving me access to people who in their networks who they thought could help.

Advice for applying for jobs during COVID

Ibra 'Drew' Fancher, Ph.D. - Assistant Professor, Department of Kinesiology and Applied Physiology, University of Delaware (UIC Postdoc 2014-2020) Heading link

My advice to postdocs applying for faculty positions, pandemic or not, is do not give up. Keep publishing, keep writing award applications, and keep applying for faculty positions. While it may feel impossible to land a job most places now with hiring freezes in place at many institutions, you never know. Keep searching.

Advice for applying for jobs during COVID

'Virginia' Huaqing Liang, Ph.D. - Assistant Professor, Marshall University School of Physical Therapy (UIC Postdoc, 2018-2020) Heading link

Well, this sure is a very interesting time to find jobs and the common wisdom might not be so reliable right now… So the first suggestion/experience is to acknowledge that nobody, including interviewers and interviewees, really knows how to do this…The second suggestion/experience is to fully take advantage of the online setting. Since the schedule would be set, you would know the name of the persons you are going to meet. So do your homework and be prepared to have engaging conversation[s].

Advice for applying for jobs during COVID

Edson Oliveira, Ph.D. - Scientist III, Viral Vector Team, Thermo Fisher Scientific (UIC Postdoc 2019) Heading link

Social and soft skills are equally important as your expertise in the field. You must be a very good communicative person while you excel in your area. Social skills will help to build your industry network and people will keep you in mind once the opportunity shows up. Keep your LinkedIn always updated/organized and let the job come to you instead of wasting too much time hunting for one. Reaching out to people on LinkedIn to make an introduction and to discuss your work area is more effective in making a transition than investing in cold applications

Advice for applying for jobs during COVID