Career Workshop

December 3rd, 2021

Many researchers became involved in wastewater surveillance during their training or while early career scientists. The goals of this workshop were to identify the impacts, both positive & negative, of early career researchers’ wastewater surveillance experiences on their perceived career paths and/or research interests. We also aimed to provide space for participants to discuss concerns, make connections with colleagues on similar paths, and consider how they can use their wastewater surveillance experiences to their advantage.

Workshop session 1: Breakout Room Discussions

Participants in small groups were asked to discuss and share:
1. Career challenges associated with wastewater surveillance activities
2. Career opportunities that wastewater surveillance afforded them.

Workshop session 2: Panel Discussion

Panelists from varying industries discussed their outlooks on WBE career paths and how WBE can be incorporated to various industries. The panelists for this discussion were:
– Vajra Allan, Program Manager, PATH
– Robbie Barbero, Chief Business Officer, Ceres Nanosciences
– Raul Gonzalez, Environmental Scientist, Hampton Roads Sanitation District
– Zachary Marsh, Epidemiologist, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
– Brian Pecson, Principal Engineer, Trussell Technologies Inc
– Rebecca Schneider, Staff Analyst, Houston Health Department
– Krista Wigginton, Associate Professor, University of Michigan

Workshop outcomes

Following the workshop the participants and panelists collaborated to publish a Viewpoint article on how conducting disaster research impacts early career scientists. The article was published in Environmental Science and Technology.