PDA

Self-Nominations for Tufts PDA Board is Open!

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Dear Postdocs,

Develop leadership, communication and organizational skills within the PDA!

Are you interested in joining the Tufts PDA Board and its committees? We’re looking for postdocs to take on a variety of leadership and committee member roles in the PDA with the overall goal of improving the postdoctoral experience across the Tufts campuses.

Available roles include Career Development, Postdoc Advocacy, Communication and Outreach/Social.

Now is the time to nominate yourself for a position in our new Board:

http://bit.ly/PDAnominate

Nominations will close on 6/30/18 and the new board will be determined in consultation with the nominees. The new board will then be announced and have their first meeting in early July!

-The Tufts PDA Board

TuftsNow SciComm Internship – Accepting applications now through May 28th

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Regardless of which career trajectory you end up taking, being able to communicate ideas clearly to a broad audience is a crucial skill for success. The Tufts Postdoctoral Association has partnered with TuftsNow, the one-stop site for Tufts news, social media, events, videos, photography and more, to offer a science communication (SciComm) internship to dedicated PhD candidates and postdoctoral researchers. The internship lasts 1 year (June – May), and interns will work closely with TuftsNow editors to publish 2-3 science- or research-related stories through TuftsNow per semester. This is a great chance to learn the technical details of writing and publishing and build your resume!

This past year’s SciComm Intern was postdoctoral scholar Dr. Erin Lewis, who is currently working in the Nutritional Immunology Lab at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging (HNRCA). Lewis published four different articles with TuftsNow. Her first two articles were based off press releases on Tufts research and translated for the general public on the TuftsNow website. She then moved on to developing stories from her own research and from recently released primary research articles from Tufts scientists. Two of her articles were published in print in Tufts Nutrition, a twice yearly magazine of the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy and the HNRCA. In addition to receiving feedback on her writing, she was trained in topic identification and interview skills and gained valuable insight into how the editorial process works. When asked to reflect on her time working with TuftsNow, Lewis said, “this was a unique opportunity to learn from experienced editors and gain confidence in translating challenging technical science pieces for the lay public.”

Time commitment varies from 4-8 hours per month. Applications are due Monday, May 28th. Please click here to download an application, or email Lauren Crowe at lauren [dot] crowe [at] tufts [dot] edu for more information.

Postdoc Appreciation Week: Financial Planning with Fidelity Investments

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We were joined by Dan Shea from Fidelity Investments to learn more about budgeting and financial planning!



Financial planning with Fidelity Investments

Topics to be discussed:

  • Track your expenses.
  • Know what is a discretionary vs essential spending.
  • Monitor your spending behavior.
  • Tough to save if you don’t know what you’re saving for!!
Essential expenses:
  • Mortgage
  • Food
  • Health care
Examples of discretionary expenses:
  • Travel
  • Cable TV
Make paying high-interest credit cards a priority:
  • If you have credit cards with an 8-9% interest rate it’s bad, so try to pay them as soon as possible.
  • Create a budget.
  • Avoid getting a high interest now because it compounds – you end up paying more in the future.
  • If you have more than one credit card with a high-interest rate, you can consolidate them but then make sure they get paid during the timeline that was determined for it.
  • Example: if you have a credit card with a 10% interest rate versus a card with a 15% interest rate then pay the one with the 15% interest rate first!
  • Key to your credit report is how long you’ve had your credit cards.
How much to use the credit card?
  • Doesn’t matter how much you use the credit card, as long as you pay them. Try to pay them off each month.
  • Use only 16% of what’s available of your credit. For example: if you have a $10,000 dollar credit you don’t want to have more than $1,600 in balance.
  • Too many cards could hurt your credit.
  • Monitor your savings!
  • “Don’t keep all your eggs in one basket” – particularly important with investments.
    • Good tools:
      •  In the Fidelity Investments website to keep track of your accounts (free to set up!) – you can buy stocks through that tool.
      • Google Wallet
      • Some other tools charge $20/month to use.
How to create and manage your budget:
  • Money for essentials, unplanned emergencies and goals.
  • 50% of your take home income should go to essential spending.
Essential spending:
  • ~50% of take-home pay.
Essential savings:
  • Save 15% of pre-tax (not take-home) income.
Roth-IRA:
  • Lowers your taxable income. The younger you are and the lower your bracket is, the more sense it makes to have a Roth-IRA.
Short-term savings:
  • Save 5% of your income.
Emergency funds:
  • “Because the unexpected happens”.
  • Should save 3-6 months of essential expenses!
  • Maybe start a separate bank of money account and put in a certain amount every month ($20 or so) after you’ve paid your bad debt and covered your essential expenses.
Retirement:
  • Start saving for retirement as soon as possible! Up to 8% pre-tax income every month.
  • You don’t want to compromise your retirement savings. Compounding is key!
  • 403(b) retirement plan – can you merge your 403(b) from your old institution into a new one like Tufts? Yes (Rollover)!
  • If you take out a loan on your retirement plan, you have to pay taxes on it.
Mutual funds versus stocks
 
Investing:
  • Fidelity Investments is in campus twice a month on campus.
    • October is booked, but for after October is cool – financial advice for free!!
**Pay off high debt first!**
  • Paying debt in full saves you a lot of interest.
  • The benefit of paying your debt:
    • The higher your FICO score the lower your APR is.
Credit score:
  • Student loans can actually help your score, but whether you’re good at making payments to your loan every month is what influences your standing.
Know what you’re spending on and distinguish between good debt versus bad debt.
  • Good debt: i.e. mortgage
  • Bad debt: credit cards
If making $65,000 or less, we can write down the student loan debt for tax breaks?
 
Housing:
  • Housing payment should be no more than 28% of your gross income.
  • The City of Boston offers a class on home owning for $25.
The order on how to use your money:
  1. Saving for emergency expenses
  2. Saving for retirement
  3. Pay/pay-off high-interest cards
  4. Pay student loans
 
 

 

VersatilePhD Seminar on March 16th

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WebEx login info below!

March 2016 Posters

Versatile PhD Seminar
Wednesday, March 16, 2016
4:30 pm | Eastern Daylight Time (New York, GMT-04:00) | 2 hrs

Join WebEx meeting

Meeting number:
739 371 167
Meeting password:
3jk5m2nW

Join from a video conferencing system or application
Dial 739371167@tufts.webex.com

Join by phone
+1-617-627-6767 US Toll
Access code: 739 371 167