originally posted 2 Nov 2010
I'm looking for some insight from folks out there that are (or interact with) new graduate students. You see, I would really, really like to get 1 or 2 good students this year to get my lab kick-started. Where I'm at there are several sources of students: the department, a MD/PhD program, and 3 different multidisciplinary "umbrella programs". In order to get any of these students to join my lab, I first need to convince them to rotate. I've done pretty well getting attention from the students in my home department. But it is really difficult to find a way to interact with these umbrella programs as a n00b faculty. But the other day I got my "in". One of these programs, that has really good students, is having a poster session*.
Now, I know how to make good posters, IMHO. And I'm familiar with Dr. Zen's excellent advice. The thing that sort of trips me up is the whole "new grad student" part. What are they thinking? How can I get them excited about my lab? It has been a while since I was a new grad student, and I never had PIs standing next to a poster to woo me. It has also been a while since I spent a lot of time with new grad students. There weren't all that many students at Big Postdoc Inst. I've kind of been in a bubble, student-wise.
So here's my question: what should one include on a poster to get new graduate students excited and convince them to rotate in my lab?
OK, I'm sorry. There is no bacon in this post. But I do love bacon. Yummmm.
*It's like a bizarro-world "social". The PIs are supposed to stand up and give posters and the students mill about getting "familiar" with the faculty. I assume only new faculty go to these things, but I have no idea really.