Personal Support for PhD Fellowship Holders
Many public and private institutions award fellowships to young scientists. What distinguishes the Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds from most of these institutions is that it maintains a personal relationship to its fellows and that it has always made a point of providing the young scientists with comprehensive support beyond the monthly stipend. The foundation operates unbureaucratically and flexibly; formal paperwork is kept at a minimum to generate an atmosphere conducive to creative research. Every effort is made to give fellowship holders the feeling that the staff members of the foundation are always prepared to assist them.
To gain experience in international scientific discussions and to establish contact with senior scientists who may be in a position to promote their careers, each PhD fellowship holder is encouraged to attend international conferences. The foundation provides the necessary funding for one conference attendance per year if fellows give a poster presentation or talk on the results of their PhD work.
Every year, PhD fellowship holders working in Europe are invited to a summer seminar at Hirschegg in Kleinwalsertal, Austria. Regular participation is expected. During this one-week stay, the fellows present their research projects and go hiking in the mountains. In the evenings, career subjects are discussed. While the main objective of these seminars is scientific exchange, they frequently mark the beginning of scientific co-operations and lasting friendships.
Every spring, fellowship holders have the opportunity of being trained by communication experts on how to present their research more effectively and comprehensibly to different audiences. Each German-speaking fellow working in Europe is expected to participate at least once in this one-week seminar in Lautrach, Germany.
Every second year, the foundation also organizes a one-week communication training at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratories, NY, USA, for fellowship holders who work in North America as well as the non-German-speaking fellowship holders working in Europe.
Woods Hole meetings
Present and former fellows working in North America are invited every second year to a scientific meeting at the Marine Biology Laboratory in the scenic setting of Woods Hole, MA, USA.
Alumni meetings at Gracht Castle
Every summer, the Boehringer Ingelheim Fonds invites its former fellows from Europe for a weekend seminar to Gracht Castle near Cologne, Germany. Here topics such as “Epidemic and pandemic diseases”, “Technology transfer” or “The sea - terra incognita” are discussed.