Dear Postdoctoral Fellow Community,
Thank you for the warm welcome as I start my new role as the Director of the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs. I look forward to working together to advance the university’s mission of discovery and learning, and to helping each of you achieve your professional goals.
Since I first joined the Vanderbilt community in 2010, I have had the opportunity to serve as a professor of sociology, and also as the dean for undergraduate education in the College of Arts and Science. My time on this campus has consistently reaffirmed the power of collaboration, proving that incredible breakthroughs happen when the world’s brightest postdocs and students, working with dedicated faculty and staff, come together in a supportive community.
2021 is an especially momentous time to be a postdoc at Vanderbilt. The university is finding new ways to invest in research and professional training. What’s more, the new role of vice provost for graduate education—which I am honored to fill—was established to increase connectivity between different schools and colleges, and to foster the interdisciplinary research that sets Vanderbilt apart.
While there is much to look forward to, I also understand that extraordinary obstacles remain due to COVID-19. Please be patient with me as I work to ensure that I fully understand these new obstacles as well as recognize any lingering concerns. I hope that we will continue to find ways to support one another, and to demonstrate the resilience that has brought us to this moment. As Chancellor Diermeier often says, significant challenges can also lead to new opportunities. They inspire the very innovation and scholarship that define our postdoctoral community. I am fully committed to growing and strengthening our community and hope you will work with me, together, to make Vanderbilt the best it can be for all of us.
Thank you all for your engagement and dedication to innovation and research, and for playing a vital role in advancing our globally renowned research university.
C. André Christie-Mizell, Ph.D.
Vice Provost for Graduate Education
Director, Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Dean of the Graduate School
Centennial Professor of Sociology