michelle_peterson at cellbio.duke.edu
Thu Apr 27 18:12:45 EST 1995
In article <950426204604_97580593 at aol.com>, BrandonVt at aol.com wrote:
> I hope I can get some information and advice that will help
> keep another woman scientist in the pipeline.
> I switched fields after I completed my PhD from an
> agricultural related field to human genetics. While I really
> enjoy the work I am doing in my postdoc, I was dismayed to
> learn the salary I would be paid compared to what I would have
> expected as postdoc had I not changed fields. I currently earn
> $20,000 per year with a benefits package that costs me $100
> per month for health insurance. This is at a major urban university in the
> Northeastern US. In the department I left at Cornell University, an incoming
> postdoc could earn $26,000/year with complete health insurance coverage.
> Postdocs with the US Dept. of Agriculture start at about $33,000. My boss
> assured me that the $20,000 I was offered was a competitve salary but being
> new to the field I have no contacts and no way to verify this. We are fairly
> isolated in our lab and I have not met other postdocs to compare notes with.
> I hope I can get some feedback from other postdocs or scientists that hire
> them as to what is a reasonable postdoc salary.
> I hope to in the future secure my own funding but realize that this will take
> a year at the minimum and would like to get a feel for my position in the
> meantime. Thanks for your input.
It is not necessarily reasonable, but it is the norm. NIH postdoc
salaries are that low, epecially first year; they increase upon
experience. Private foundations are usually better -- the second year of
an MDA fellowship a couple of years ago was 28.000 -- but I've seen
nothing like the US Dep't. of Agriculture levels in academia. Many grants
have institutional allowances that can be used for journals or health
insurance. MD/PhDs command higher salaries; industry postdocs also pay
better. Good luck and hang in there. Michelle
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