Janice Christensen

Identifying scientific potential is a difficult task, some applicants have all the resources to succeed and others have none. As a student Janice had fallen in the latter category; early on she had been discouraged from pursuing a career in science. Despite this delay Janice persevered and continued her scientific studies, demonstrated here scientific abilities, and is now a pioneer in optical neurophysiology. Approachable and amicable, Janice enshrines quirkiness by adorning her desk with plush science animals and a menagerie of multicolored writing utensils. She loves being a researcher, she loves communicating about science, and she loves helping young researchers succeed. All of this belies her obstinate mind that circumvents obstacles and deconstructs her often enigma-like electrophysiology data. Her work not only progresses her own career but furthers society’s knowledge and ability to solve social problems. Behind this, and her ultimate motivation, is her desire to make a positive impact in both her local and national community.

Janice scans for evidence of those same motivations in the applications she analyzes. She wants to advance applicants with personality, who can communicate, who are passionate about the work that they do. She values volunteer work, not as an extracurricular activity, but as a clear indicator of an applicant’s desire to produce outstanding material. Those qualities that make her an effective scientist can be taught but Janice believes an outstanding applicant must reflect her motivations.

About Tomas Kasza

Rutgers Neuroscience Graduate student
This entry was posted in Doctoral Funding Mentoring Program and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Janice Christensen

  1. Kayla Crawley says:

    Thank you for your blog post! It was as if I was reading a novel. It would be wonderful to hear more about how Janice’s previous experiences of discouragement have impacted the way she works with younger people who show interest in STEM fields.

  2. Kathleen Rogers says:

    Hi Tomas, I’m really glad you highlighted that Janice didn’t have the resources to succeed when she was starting out. Many funders and reviewers may have had rough starts or major challenges like many of us. It’s important to give them a human face and to understand that they are people too, with all of the baggage that comes with being a person in this world. That makes them much less scary. I always assume that the people who judge my work are mean and critical in a bad way and eager to point out my flaws, so reading about someone like Janice, who is described as approachable and amicable, is actually quite liberating.

  3. Pingback: Dear Janice Christensen | GradFund Conversations

  4. Pingback: Dear Janice Christensen, | GradFund Conversations

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s