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NIH -- Making a difference

  • Work/Life Balance
  • Culture & Values
  • Career Opportunities
  • Comp & Benefits
  • Senior Management
Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

I have been working at NIH full-time

Recommends
Negative Outlook
Approves of CEO
Recommends
Negative Outlook
Approves of CEO

Pros

The people who choose to work at NIH do it because they care about creating new medical knowledge that advances human health. They have the right values and believe that they are making a difference -- which turns out to be true. They are.

Cons

In the current political climate, congressional support for all basic research and science has been on the decline, which is causing painful choices about what can be supported within NIH. Also, DHHS rules, especially around travel, make it hard to get things done.

Advice to Management

The role of leadership is critical in these challenging times. Institute directors need to be much more visible and supportive as their staffs struggle to adjust to current changes. Clear planning is needed when deciding priorities in the face of scare resources.

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  1. Helpful (3)

    Student researcher/postdoc

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Post Doctoral IRTA in Baltimore, MD
    Current Employee - Post Doctoral IRTA in Baltimore, MD

    I have been working at NIH full-time (More than 5 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Lots of opportunity for collaboration, and good reference for future employment. Good seminars from top-notch professors.

    Cons

    Projects are often long, and not suited for the time of a postdoc. While funds are present to do projects, they are often limited. Little opportunity to publish or write grants, though not completely absent.

    Advice to Management

    Too many old PI's who might have done something great in the 1980s or 90s, but are stalling opportunities for young investigators.


  2. Helpful (2)

    Great research opportunities, horrible standard of living for Postdocs

    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Bethesda, MD
    Current Employee - Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Bethesda, MD

    I have been working at NIH full-time (More than 3 years)

    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    Pros

    Obviously, the NIH is probably one of the only places in the US where you can do cutting-edge biomedical research with fairly flexible budgets. For postdocs, they also provide opportunities to attend meetings, although this has decreased during my time here due to the budget crunch.

    Cons

    The salary for a postdoctoral fellow is absolutely horrible. I have been here for 5 years and we have had no pay increases, while the cost of living goes up and up and up. Living in the DC region on the pay they give is pretty much impossible unless you are willing to give up comfort - who works hard enough to get a PhD in order to do that? You had better be married with a second income, and preferably without children if you want to make it work. It is very depressing when there are technicians without anything beyond a Bachelor's Degree making twice what postdocs make, and they get benefits too.

    Advice to Management

    You should reward postdocs for their education and experience, not treat them like slaves. The NIH claims that the low salary is acceptable because of the training and prestige it provides - but in today's job market, that is not enough.


There are newer employer reviews for NIH
There are newer employer reviews for NIH

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