Welcome Information

Message from the Director

Thank you for the consideration of East Carolina University for your continuing professional training and development as a postdoctoral scholar.

The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs (OPA) at East Carolina University was established in 2008 within the graduate school to ensure successful training and work experiences for postdoctoral scholars by providing a supportive working environment. In October 2013, the office was moved to the Division of Research and Graduate Studies and the position of Director was established. Postdoctoral scholars are a growing population at ECU, and we are committed to support the career development of these important members of our community.

Six core competencies have been defined by the National Postdoctoral Association. These serve to guide the postdoctoral scholar, mentor and institution of those skills that should be achieved for the scholar to ultimately achieve intellectual and professional independence and success:

Discipline-specific conceptual knowledge
Research skill development
Communication skills
Leadership and management skills
Responsible conduct of research

With these competencies as a guide, the OPA and officers of the ECU Postdoctoral Scholar Association seek to Increase scholar engagement and participation in the association and in career development programs and opportunities. An ad hoc Advisory group comprised of ECU faculty will be formed next year. We are developing plans for postdoctoral evaluation, and individual mentoring and career development. We are updating the postdoctoral scholar handbook and will be developing an orientation checklist and information packet.

In 2014, we are resuming a scholar-initiated Seminar Series that will meet monthly. The location will rotate and will be the home department of the scholar who is presenting. We will continue to identify external seminar speakers from each department with whom scholars are interested in meeting, both for scientific discussions and for career direction and advice. In addition, speakers from ECU and Raleigh have been identified to speak on a variety of topics, including assistance for those with English as a Second Language, grant writing (K99/PA-11-197 Pathway to Independence), Linked In / Resume writing, cover letters, and Research Gate/ project reporter/ epubs.

Thank you again for considering ECU for your postdoctoral studies. We look forward to having you join our community.


Kathryn Verbanac, PhD
Director, Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Professor, Department of Surgery


Please visit the Contact Information page for a list of individuals and their contact information.