Welcome To Papa PhD

with David Mendes, PhD

Career & Life Balance Exploration
for Academics and Graduate Researchers

Latest Episodes

  • All
  • Communication
  • Consulting
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Industry jobs
  • Journalisme scientifique
  • Law school
  • Lettres
  • Media
  • Medical school
  • Medical writing
  • Mental Health
  • Policy
  • Publishing
  • Regulatory
  • Science outreach
  • Scientific illustration
  • Teaching
  • University jobs

Graydon Snider –Part 2 – Building Your Path Towards Data Science

In part 2 of my conversation with Graydon Snider, we dug a little deeper into his rationale for exploring career avenues during his postdoc. The strategies and resources he...

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Graydon Snider – Part 1 – Designing The Academic Path That Fits You

Do you know what it means to be a data scientist? This domain that is attracting more and more PhDs is fairly new, and looking at the job postings...

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Jean-Sébastien Provost – Partie 2 – Accéder au domaine de la science des données

Dans cette deuxième partie de ma conversation avec Jean-Sébastien Provost, on a parlé du chapitre postdoc de son trajet académique et de comment celui-ci l’a propulsé vers la carrière...

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Jean-Sébastien Provost – Partie 1 – De la psychologie aux sciences biomédicales

Cette semaine, je vous apporte une entrevue à propos d’un domaine où les détenteurs de doctorats en sciences sont très en demande – la science des données. Pour en...

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Athina Zampara – Part 2 – Leveraging Your Skills in Project Management

In part 2 of this week’s interview, Athina Zampara tells her story of investing in learning as an adult and of building her CV to eventually find a position...

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Athina Zampara – Part 1 – From Physics to the E-Learning Industry

In this week’s episode, you’ll be hearing about gender bias in academia, about the experience of being a first-generation graduate student, and about the daunting question of “is it...

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Olivier Hernandez – Partie 2 – Études de troisième cycle, un atout pour la vie

Dans la deuxième partie de mon entrevue avec Olivier Hernandez, nous avons abordé plus en profondeur la question des compétences transversales qu’on développe en tant que doctorant, la question...

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Olivier Hernandez – Partie 1 – Du génie à l’industrie à l’astrophysique

Cette semaine, je vous apporte une passionnante conversation dans l’univers du génie et de l’astrophysique. Au cours de cet échange avec mon invité, Olivier Hernandez, vous apprendrez à quoi...

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Zoë Ayres – Part 2 – Being a Research Scientist in the Water Industry

In Part 2 of my conversation with Zoë Ayres, we discussed her experience transitioning from an industry-led postdoc to her current position in the water industry. We talked about...

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Featured Guests

Scientifique des données

Jean-Sébastien Provost détient un doctorat en science biomédicale de l’Université de Montréal. Plus précisément, il a étudié la contribution des régions fronto-striatales dans les processus exécutifs en utilisant l’imagerie par résonance magnétique fonctionnelle. Après un postdoctorat et 3 années à travailler comme associé de recherche, il a fait le grand saut dans le milieu de l’industrie en tant que scientifique des données.

Project Officer at the EC

Athina Zampara comes from Greece and has lived and worked in Brussels, Belgium, for 10 years. Athina has an interdisciplinary educational background having studied Physics, History and Philosophy of Science, Italian language and Education. After a stint in the e-learning industry, she has worked as Project Manager and now holds a position as Project Officer in the European Public Administration.

Directeur de planétarium

Olivier Hernandez est astrophysicien et directeur du Planétarium Rio Tinto Alcan à Montréal depuis mai 2018. Il a d’abord étudié pour devenir ingénieur avant de se tourner vers l’astrophysique et d’obtenir son doctorat de l’Université de Montréal et du laboratoire d’astrophysique de Marseille (France). Il a longtemps travaillé comme chercheur sur les galaxies et concepteur d’instruments astronomiques à l’Université de Montréal. En dehors du travail, Olivier aime aime le théâtre, cuisiner et regarder les étoiles!

Research Scientist

Zoë is an analytical scientist by background. She did her undergraduate in forensic science, before pursuing analytical chemistry, and going on to do her PhD research on the development of electrochemical sensors at the University of Warwick in the UK. She is now an R&D scientist in the water industry, having made the transition from academia to industry just over two years ago. Zoë is also an active mental health advocator, raising awareness around mental health in graduate school and beyond..

Postdoctoral Researcher, Science Communicator

Maryse Thomas is a post-doctoral research fellow at the Massachussets Eye and Ear and Harvard Medical School in Boston. Originally from Montreal, she received her PhD at McGill University in the field of auditory neuroscience. Maryse is interested in digital media and science communication and has been the Director of the website UsefulScience.org since 2018. 

Science and Medical Writer

Nathalie Ross, former research scientist, is a bilingual (French & English) Medical and Regulatory writer with over 15 years of experience. Her curriculum also includes Senior Manager, Regulatory Affairs at Mapi, where she managed a large number of drug and medical device applications for Health Canada and the FDA in a wide spectrum of therapeutic areas (cardiovascular, dentistry, gastrointestinal, oncology, orthopaedic, paediatrics, and plastic surgery).

Chef du Contenu

Docteure en littérature française et bachelière en anthropologie, Anne-Hélène est une passionnée des mots, mais aussi d’enseignement dans le domaine des lettres. Sa vie professionnelle est bien remplie, alliant les rôles de chef de contenu dans une agence, d’enseignante de littérature au niveau callégial et de tutrice en littérature et en rédaction au niveau universitaire.

Professor, Science Communicator

Jonathan loves epigenetics and loves teaching. And he loves trying his hand at new things and learning new skills. Having had a fairly straightforward academic journey towards professorship, he is candid about having had moments of disilusionment when he went and tested other waters. Today, his research and his teaching are only made more interesting for it.


In my continued search for new science podcasts, I happened upon Papa PhD, hosted and produced by its creator David Mendes. This podcast has wonderful interviews with those who’ve completed their PhD’s where they talk about what brought them to the path they are currently on in their career. When it comes to thinking about networking and thinking outside the box as far as next steps after your PhD program, this is the podcast to subscribe to.Read article here.

Suzanne C. Miller – Managing Editor, Integrative & Comparative Biology