AAAS Awarded $825,000 Grant To Create 'One Stop Shopping' For Young Scientists Seeking Information On Resources And Careers

November 04, 1997

CHEVY CHASE, MD, November 4, 1997 -- The Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) announced today that it will award a $825,000 grant to the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) to create a 'one-stop shopping' site on the Internet to help young scientists find resources and information for their careers.

The extensive database on fellowships, graduate programs, job openings and other opportunities will appear on Science's Next Wave, a Web site that has become a popular online gathering place for aspiring scientists. The site, produced by the AAAS journal Science is at http://www.nextwave.org.

The enhanced version of Science's Next Wave will also feature practical career advice for young scientists and stories about them, as well as links to numerous scientific organizations and funding sources. HHMI will provide an extensive database on career resources that it has compiled, and many other organizations that assist young scientists will also contribute material. AAAS will take the lead in putting the information online in an appealing, easy-to-use format.

"A student who's looking for the right graduate program or fellowship now goes through a search that is difficult and time-consuming," said HHMI's president, Purnell W. Choppin. "Pulling together all of this information and offering it on the Web will help people to plan their careers more rationally."

Created in 1995, Science's Next Wave now has more than 23,000 registered users. Its current features include advice on job hunting, profiles of scientists who pursued new kinds of careers, online discussion forums and reviews of useful Web sites.

"Sciences Next Wave is a popular resource for young scientists trying to figure out the next steps in their careers," said AAAS Executive Officer Richard S. Nicholson. "By adding the HHMI database to the site, we will greatly increase the value of the service to our users."

With the new three-year grant from HHMI, Science's Next Wave will provide its many users with customized details about resources of interest, with an emphasis on the biomedical sciences. An undergraduate thinking of going to graduate school, for instance, will be able to search for programs and financial support in specific disciplines. Graduate students will find information about postdoctoral positions, and medical students will be able to explore opportunities for combining clinical practice with research.

Visitors to the site will be able to move easily from one resource to another instead of spending days sending letters and faxes. The site will also explore questions on the minds of would-be scientists, from opportunities in industry to concerns about health insurance.

"The Institute views this as much more than a grant," said Joseph G. Perpich, HHMI's vice president for grants and special programs. "It's a major collaboration among the funders of science education programs to extend their reach within the education community. HHMI is providing the financial resources and much of the initial data, while Science's Next Wave is helping to link the funders with students and science educators at all levels."

Science's Next Wave will expand in several stages, beginning in February 1998 with material about physician scientists, followed by resources on graduate and postgraduate training, junior faculty positions, undergraduate education and precollege science education. AAAS will receive $275,000 annually for the next three years under the grant.

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Howard Hughes Medical Institute

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