Previous Postdoc Slam Competitions

Click on a Postdoc Slam event to see details of that year's competition.

Postdoc Slam 2019

September 19, 2019 — Genentech Hall

Read the news story: "One-Eyed Sheep" Talk Takes Top Prize at 2019 Postdoc Slam

Watch video of the full 2019 event

Prize Winners:

Grand Prize: Ishan Deshpande, PhD (Aashish Manglik, faculty mentor) - From One-eyed Sheep to Anti-cancer Drugs
Second Prize:
 Aparna Bhaduri, PhD (Arnold Kriegstein, faculty mentor) - The Jumping Cells of Brain Cancer
Third Prize: Brian Chiou, PhD (Xianhua Piao, faculty mentor) - Myelin: Getting on My Nerves
People's Choice: Ziyang Zhang, PhD (Kevan Shokat, faculty mentor) - Always on My Mind – Guiding Drugs Into the Brain


Danielle Carroll, MD (Aenor Sawyer, faculty mentor) - Rocket Surgery: The Future of Medicine on the Moon and on Mars
Lisa Chesner, PhD (Felix Feng, faculty mentor) - How Do Prostate Cancer Cells Hide from the Immune System?
Joel Finbloom, PhD (Tejal Desai, faculty mentor) - Storming Bacterial Biofilm Fortresses with Nanotechnology
Sasha Gorrell, PhD (Daniel Le Grange and Linda Pfiffner, faculty mentors) - Eating Disorders and Exercise: Are You Running to Win or Get Thin?
Jessica Kotov, PhD (Jason Cyster, faculty mentor) - Plasma Cells: To Stay or Not to Stay
Nina Serwas, PhD (Matthew Krummel, faculty mentor) - Tasting the Difference: Big Eaters in the Immune System 

Event Judges:

Eric Evans, PhD, Chief Scientific Officer, Myriad Women's Health
B. Joseph Guglielmo, PharmD, Dean, UCSF School of Pharmacy
Moira Gunn, PhD, Associate Professor, University of San Franisco, and host of NPR’s Tech Nation
Sara Kenkare-Mitra, PhD, Senior Vice President of Development Sciences, Genentech
Francesca Vega, Vice Chancellor, Community and Government Relations, UCSF

Postdoc Slam 2018

September 26, 2018 — Genentech Hall

Read the news story: Talk on "Butt Cancer" Tackles Taboo with Humor to Win 2018 Postdoc Slam

Watch video of the full 2018 event

Prize Winners:

Grand Prize: Sona Chowdhury, PhD (Joel Palefsky, faculty mentor) - But, the "Butt Cancer" that No One Talks About
Second Prize: Will Schuerman, PhD (Edward Chang and Matthew Leonard, faculty mentors) - Sparking Neural Plasticity
Third Prize: Lyndsay Murrow, PhD (Zev Gartner, faculty mentor) - Mapping Breast Cancer Risk
People's Choice: Sona Chowdhury, PhD


Ivan Osokine, MD, PhD (Adrian Erlebacher, faculty mentor) - How Mom's Uterine Tissue Promotes a Healthy Pregnancy
Homa Majd, PhD (Faranak Fattahi, faculty mentor) - A Spoonful of Sugar Helps the Neurons Go Down
Douglas Totten, PhD (Karunesh Ganguly, faculty mentor) - Coordinating Stroke Recovery: A Stimulating Approach
Melinda Barkhuizen, PhD (Dena Dubal, faculty mentor) - The X-factor in Parkinson's Disease
Erin Vogel, PhD (Daniel Ramo, faculty mentor) - Comparing and Despairing: How Social Media Affects Us and What We Can Do About It
Lydia Le Page, PhD (Myriam Chaumeil, faculty mentor) - Fuel for Thought
Colleen Carpenter, PhD (Scott Baraban, faculty mentor) - Zebrafish Tales: An Aquarium-to-Bedside Approach for Epilepsy

Event Judges:

Daniel Lowenstein, MD, UCSF Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost
Michael Penn, MD, PhD, Director of Diversity in Basic Science Faculty, UCSF Office of Diversity & Outreach
Ann Reid, Executive Director, National Center for Science Education
Chris Shaffer, MS, UCSF University Librarian and Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Information Management
Evelyn Strauss, PhD, Freelance Science Writer and Editor

Postdoc Slam 2017

September 19, 2017 — Genentech Hall

Read the news story: "Mighty Tooth" Talk Wins Second Annual Postdoc Slam Competition

Watch video of the full 2017 event

Prize Winners:

Grand Prize: Sarah Engelberth, PhD (Stefan Habelitz, faculty mentor) - The Tooth: Small But Mighty
Runner Up: Christy Sheehy, PhD (Ari Green, faculty mentor) - The Eye: A Window Into Our Brain
People's Choice: Christy Sheehy, PhD


Selim Boudoukha, PhD (Hiten Madhani, faculty mentor) - When a Loose Thread Becomes a Threat!
Sol Fereres-Rapoport, PhD (Tom Kornberg, faculty mentor) - Don't Talk to Your Neighbor
Leonardo Ferreira, PhD (Jeff Bluestone and Qizhi Tang, faculty mentors) - How to Cure Type 1 Diabetes Using Immunology
Aaron Hardin, PhD (Nadav Ahituv, faculty mentor) - Why Are Your Nipples There?
Yue Leng, PhD (Kristine Yaffe, faculty mentor) - Sleep to Save the Aging Brain
Melanie Morrison, PhD (Janine Lupo, faculty mentor) - Pediatric Brain Cancer and Radiation Therapy: The Good the Bad and the Ugly
Ana Ruiz-Saenz, PhD (Mark Moasser, faculty mentor) - Finding a New Achilles' Heel in Cancer
Yvette van der Eijk, PhD (Stella Bialous and Stan Glantz, faculty mentors) - Tobacco Control and Free Choice: An Oxymoron?

Event Judges:

Daniel Lowenstein, MD, UCSF Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost
Pete Farley, Director of Communications for Research and Education, UCSF University Relations
Kishore Hari, Director, Bay Area Science Festival
Lesley McClurg, Science Correspondent for KQED and NPR
Jacob Ward, Writer and Television Correspondent

Postdoc Slam 2016

September 22, 2016 — Genentech Hall

Read the news story: Smoking Cessation Talk Wins Inaugural UCSF Postdoc Slam Competition

Watch video of the full 2016 event

Prize Winners:

Grand Prize: Jin Kim, PhD (Janice Tsoh, faculty mentor) - Promoting Smoking Cessation by Addressing Food Insecurity
Runner Up: Navneet Matharu, PhD (Nadav Ahituv, faculty mentor) - How to Balance Your Satiety: From Sim(1) to Slim
People's Choice: Navneet Matharu, PhD


Alba Gonzalez Junca, PhD (Mary Helen Barcellos-Hoff, faculty mentor), Why Do Astronauts Have Increased Risk of Cancer?
Burcu Hasdemir, PhD (Aditi Bhargava, faculty mentor) - Relaxed or Stressed? The Placenta Foretells the Fetal Future
Samantha Hindle, PhD (Roland Bainton, faculty mentor) - Controlling Hormonal Behavior of Flies, Mice and Men
Elena Minones-Moyano, PhD (Dena Dubal, faculty mentor) - We Could All Use a Bit More of Our X Chromosome
Jeremiah Osteen, PhD (David Julius, faculty mentor) - Painful Lessons: What a Tarantula Bite Teaches Us about Chronic Pain
Travis Ruch, PhD (Joanne Engel, faculty mentor) - Molecular Compass
Ana Ruiz-Saenz, PhD (Mark Moasser, faculty mentor) - Overcoming Resistance to Anti-Cancer Therapies
Anthony Rush, PhD (Michael Fischbach, faculty mentor) - Equipping Your Inner Pharmacist

Event Judges

Teaster Baird, PhD, Associate Professor, chemistry and biochemistry, San Francisco State University (and UCSF postdoc alum)
Sylvain Cases, PhD, Senior Director and head of External Science and Partnering for Sanofi US West in San Francisco (and UCSF/Gladstone postdoc alum)
Mark Dresser, PhD, head of Development Sciences at Denali Therapeutics (and UCSF PhD alum)
Jennifer O'Brien, Assistant Vice Chancellor of Public Affairs at UCSF
Clifton Poodry, PhD, Senior Fellow for science education at Howard Hughes Medical Institute