Jen Wilson was one of the founding cohort of BE Communication Fellows, who joined and helped shape the Lab when it was established in 2013. She was a BE PhD student in Doug Lauffenburger’s lab, working collaboratively with Profs. Ernest Fraenkel and Mike Hemann on network approaches for functional genomic screens in cancer. Jen graduated with her PhD in May 2016.
What are you doing now?
I just started a postdoc position at Stanford Bioengineering and am funded under the CERSI program (Centers for Excellence in Regulatory Science).
How are you using communication skills in your job?
The fellowship requires that I spend time at Stanford, time at the FDA, and complete an internship with a biotech company. In my postdoc I will need to communicate with three groups that have varying goals and priorities.
How did the Comm Lab prepare you for your current role?
The Comm lab gave me a deep appreciation for understanding your audience, and serving as a Comm Lab Fellow gave me a lot of practice at identifying an audience and adapting my message to that audience.
Any advice to current students?
Test out your message sooner rather than later. Finding a practice audience is the fastest way to refine a message, no matter where you are in the editing process.