Cancelling the March Meeting Didn’t Cancel FECS Sessions
Adam Iaizzi, Member-at-Large
Exhausted from the long transpacific flight to Denver, I was already in bed when I got the email: the March Meeting was cancelled due to COVID-19. I was stunned; I had seen coronavirus in the news, but it was suddenly very real. It was certainly disappointing, but the events of the last two months have made it clear that cancelling the March Meeting was the right call.
FECS was sponsoring three sessions at the 2020 March Meeting:
“G38: Topics in Diversity, Wellness, and Inclusion for Early-Career Scientists” was FECS’s first independently-sponsored invited session. We worked hard to organize this event, and I was heartbroken to think it wouldn’t happen. Fortunately, many speakers agreed to livestream their talks and post them online. The livestream was watched by over 50 people, and the talks are now available on YouTube and from the Virtual March Meeting 2020. Special thanks to Andrea Welsh (one of the speakers) for organizing and chairing the live session.
FECS had planned two other sessions; unfortunately, these did not take place virtually. We may try these same topics at a future March Meeting (and you can let us know what you think).
For “F28: Seeing your Career in a New Light” (cosponsored with FIAP), we invited speakers to discuss their careers outside the conventional academic track in fields like photonics, physics writing, national labs, industrial physics and even entrepreneurship.
FECS had also planned a session, “S37: Top Science in Europe: Early Career Scientists and the ERC Grants” (cosponsored with FIP), featuring talks by European Research Council (ERC) grantholders as well as advice on how early career scientists can apply for ERC Grants.
From all of us at FECS, we hope that you are all healthy and safe in these trying times. We are already looking forward to FECS events at the 2021 APS meetings. In the meantime, we want to hear from you! What topics do you want to see FECS cover at upcoming meetings? How has COVID-19 impacted you as an early career scientist, and what can FECS do to help?