6 May 2011 • It’s been two decades since NOAA launched its Climate and Global Change Postdoctoral Program. The C&GC program was created in response to a lack of trained specialists in an burgeoning area—and it’s kept up with continued expansion in climate change study. Nearly half of the program’s 176 alumni gathered in Washington, D.C., for a 20th-anniversary reunion on 14–15 April. Emceed by Richard Somerville (Scripps Institution of Oceanography), the two days included lectures and panel discussions as well as science talks spanning the program’s 20 years.
“Most alumni of the program have gone on to become leaders in the field,” says Meg Austin, director of UCAR Visiting Scientist Programs, which administers the C&GC program for NOAA. Because many postdocs are also new parents, Austin’s group works to adjust the particulars of each appointment as needed.
Special events throughout the year bring alumni and current fellows together, Austin adds. “It’s become a model for the community to build a strongly bonded group of scientists.”