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2020 Postdoc Research Symposium

OPA & the PDA Moved Content Online as a Result of the COVID-19 Pandemic

Online Career Panel

Friday, May 29, 2020

Our panel included:

Tolga Akiner

Tolga Akiner, Ph.D.
Data Scientist

Tolga Akiner earned a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Bogazici University (Turkey). After a postdoctoral experience in Machine Learning and Material Design at NC State University, he successfully transitioned to a new role as a Data Scientist at GSK, in the Research Triangle Park. Dr Akiner is also the co-founder of PECSR, a company researching on environmental and sustainable solutions to climate change and plastic pollution.

Arion Kennedy

Arion Kennedy, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Molecular & Structural Biochemistry
NC State University

Arion Kennedy, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Molecular and Structural Biochemistry at North Carolina State University where her lab focuses on how the immune system impacts metabolic-associated disorders. Her extensive, cross-disciplinary education, including impressive Post-Doctoral training at Vanderbilt University, has helped to foster multiple collaborations and pave her way as a successful junior faculty member.

Deborah Thompson

Deborah Thompson, Ph.D.
Director of Research Partnerships
NC Agricultural Research Service
College of Agriculture & Life Sciences
NC State University

Deborah Thompson, Ph.D. in genetics, has worked in academic, government, industry (both startups and multinational), and nonprofit roles. In her current position, she facilitates research partnerships between faculty in CALS and various corporate interests in agtech and biotech, locally and around the world.

Paul Ulanch

Paul Ulanch, Ph.D., MBA
Executive Director, Crop Commercialization Program
NC Biotechnology Center

Paul Ulanch is the executive Director of the Crop Commercialization Program at the North Carolina Biotechnology Center. Dr. Ulanch has a BS in Biology-Biochemistry from Michigan Technology University, a Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Texas A&M, and earned an executive MBA from University of Pittsburgh. His vast previous experiences include postdoctoral and faculty positions, intellectual property consultant, and director of tech commercialization services.

Poster on Easel

Spotlight on Postdoc Research

NC State postdocs conduct important research on a range of topics from agriculture to biochemistry, structural engineering to materials science and mathematical modeling. Learn more about their work by following the link below.