"I want to draw attention to the need for more guidance and information during the postdoc period."

Postdoc representative Corentin Gondrand on his role at our institute

My name is Corentin Gondrand and I have been a postdoc in the Department of Chemical Biology since 2017.

I work on fluorescent proteins that are designed to sense metabolites.  Metabolites are small molecules with various functions in living cells: our sensors make them visible in microscopes and allow their concentrations to be rapidly and easily monitored.  

I love science because it can change people’s lives, since most scientific discoveries have a positive impact, e.g. on medical or technological developments. I love science also because it is exciting to work as a scientist! My area of research, namely chemical biology, is at the intersection of chemistry and biology; it uses the knowledge and the culture of both disciplines to understand better, how diseases occur and to propose new ways to cure them.

I like working at the institute because we have access to high-level equipment and at the same time have highly skilled people around us to collaborate with. I also like the friendly atmosphere, which really fosters collaborations between all the experts at the institute and other research institutions in Heidelberg (EMBL, DKFZ, ZMBH, etc.) We are equipped for doing the best possible science. The institute is also one of the few places in Europe where it is possible to work in chemical biology.

I became a postdoc representative because the postdoc period is a short and intense period in which we still need guidance. It is a period in which you have to figure out whether to stay in academia or to leave it and go to industry, while still doing your everyday research work. I wanted to draw attention to this need for more guidance and information during the postdoc period,  and actively contribute to creating a better system and environment for postdocs.

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