Postdoctoral Association

An association run by postdocs for postdocs with the overall goal to promote the professional development and well-being of the postdoctoral community at Wayne State University.

The PDA aims to:

  • Optimize the professional development of postdoctoral scholars at WSU to facilitate their successful transition to a professional career (e.g., academia, industry, policy/public sector, etc.).
  • Promote social interactions between its members by creating a forum for social gathering and discussion of issues related to the postdoctoral experience at WSU.
  • Recognize outstanding postdoctoral scholars at WSU, highlight the impact of postdoctoral research within WSU and connect WSU postdoctoral scholars to regional and national postdoctoral organizations.
  • Organize community outreach efforts by the postdoctoral scholars of WSU.

Leadership committee

The PDA is run by a board of a dedicated team of postdocs from various departments across the WSU campus. The advisor for the PDA is Associate Dean of Postdoctoral Affairs Angulique Outlaw, Ph.D.

Sneha Singh, Ph.D. – Chair

Sneha SinghMeet Sneha, a dedicated postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Ophthalmology, Anatomy, and Visual Sciences in the School of Medicine (SOM) since 2018. Collaborating with Ashok Kumar, M.S., Ph.D., at Kresge Eye Institute. Sneha specializes in researching host-virus interactions and developing innovative antiviral therapies for severe ocular infections. Her impactful work is supported by National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants. 

As the PDA chair, she oversees and guides all WSU-PDA activities, focusing on advocacy, representation, collaboration with other university PDA members, policy development, and addressing challenges within the WSU postdoctoral community. Particularly passionate about equality, fair compensation, respect, and job security, she strives to create a supportive environment for incoming international students. Sneha's multifaceted dedication extends beyond academia; she finds joy in walking, listening to music, baking, and cherishing quality time with friends and family. 

Clara G. Zundel, Ph.D. – Administrator

Clara ZundelClara is a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences in SOM since 2021. She works with Hilary Marusak, Ph.D., and is interested in understanding the neurobehavioral mechanisms behind the association between potent environmental toxicants (e.g., air pollution, lead) and increased risk for psychiatric disorders. Her work is funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, Achieve Greater Center, and the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Neurosciences.

As the PDA administrator, she hopes to foster a community of postdocs across the university and provide peer-to-peer mentorship. In addition to her leadership role, Clara is also the postdoctoral liaison to the Science Policy Network – Detroit (Sci-Pol Detroit), a student-led organization that aims to advocate for science and evidence-based policies, provide science communication and career development opportunities, and bridge the gap between scientists, lawmakers, and the lay public.

Outside of work, she enjoys seeing Broadway musicals, watching Detroit Lions football, and spending time with family and friends.

Roxanne Bérubé, Ph.D. – Treasurer

Roxanne BerubeRoxanne is a postdoctoral fellow in the Institute of Environmental Health Sciences and in the Department of Pharmacology in SOM since 2021. She works with Christopher Kassotis, PhD., and is interested in understanding the effects of endocrine disrupting chemicals on the disruption of the AhR pathway leading to liver development and metabolic health issues. Her work is funded by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) of Canada.

As PDA treasurer, Roxanne hopes to improve the situation of all postdocs working at WSU and support incoming international students. In addition to her role in the PDA leadership committee, she also is the postdoctoral representative in the Department of Pharmacology and  the Research Development Committee in SOM.

Outside of work, she enjoys running, climbing, yoga, painting and soap making.

Susmita Das, Ph.D. – Media Lead

Susmita DasSusmita has worked as a postdoctoral scholar in the Department of Ophthalmology, Anatomy and Visual Sciences in SOM since September 2019. She works with Ashok Kumar, Ph.D., and her area of research involves host-pathogen interactions and developing new non-antibiotic therapies against severe ocular infections. Her work is funded by NIH grants in the lab.

As the PDA media lead, she wants to showcase the postdoc community's achievements and promote events on social media to build a strong presence of the postdocs in and outside of the university, amplify their concerns, and provide them with opportunities. Also, she will be helping organize events and workshops for the postdocs.

Outside of her work, she has a passion for dance and enjoys listening to music while sipping coffee or wine.  

Upcoming events

  • March 29, 2024: The PDA is planning a Welcome Event for postdocs to gather and meet each other. Stay tuned for more details!

WSU postdocs can sign up for Affiliate Membership to the National Postdoctoral Association (NPA). The NPA hosts several different professional development webinars. Learn more about the NPA membership.

Join the PDA Microsoft Teams Group to stay up-to-date on postdoctoral resources and events.