Originally started by the National Postdoctoral Association, National Postdoc Appreciation Week (NPAW) takes place each year in September to recognize the significant contributions that postdoctoral scholars make to research and discovery. Universities across North America celebrate NPAW, and Graduate Studies and Postdoctoral Affairs (GSPA) is pleased to have been hosting NPAW activities for our postdocs since 2016. Past NPAW events have included professional development workshops, art classes, wellness activities, and social events. 

Information regarding NPAW 2024 will be released in August 2024. 

NPAW 2023

group at networking kick off

2023 NPAW events included:

If you have questions or concerns about the events below, feel free to contact Ashley Ryan, one of our Graduate and Postdoctoral Programming Specialists, at alryan@uwaterloo.ca.

Postdoc appreciation gift pick-ups

Event ran from September 18-22, 2023 (In-person)

As a thank you for all of your hard work as a valued postdoctoral scholar, GSPA was pleased to offer postdocs the opportunity to pick up a free gift: a custom VIP (Very Important Postdoc) lanyard.vip lanyard

Virtual escape challenge

Event ran from September 18-22, 2023 (Online)

All postdocs were invited to participate in our virtual escape challenge. Postdocs recruited a friend, colleague, or family members to play through mini puzzles and games to find the ultimate majestic goose. All postdocs who made it to the end will have the chance to be entered into a draw for one of two $20 W Store gift cards.

goose stuffie in front of dp

Networking kick-off

Event ran Monday, September 18, 2023, 9:00-10:30 am (In-person)

At our networking kick-off event, postdocs had the opportunity to meet other postdocs from across the university, enjoy delicious snacks, tea, and coffee, and hear some kind words from some special university guests. 

Guided meditation

Event ran Tuesday, September 19, 2023, 1:00-2:00 pm (In-person)

This event featured an hour of relaxation and balance as we went through a guided meditation facilitated by Jennifer Yuen from Counselling Services. Participants were invited to experience this however they would like in the space (e.g., lying down, sitting on a chair, sitting on the ground, bringing a blanket). 

Leadership as a mindset lunch and learn

Event ran Wednesday, September 20, 2023 from 12:00-1:30 pm (In-person)

When you hear the word “leader” what do you think about? In this session, facilitated by John Fedy from Organizational and Human Development (OHD), postdocs explored who they are as a leader and why anyone should be led by them. OHD shared some of the exciting learning opportunities available to postdocs to continue their leadership learning journey.

Rock climbing

Event ran Thursday, September 21, 2023 from 2:30-4:00 pm (In-person)

Postdocs reached new heights at our rock climbing event! All participants were provided with equipment and a safety lesson prior to climbing (no previous experience was needed). This was a great opportunity to meet other postdocs from across the university, get some exercise, and have fun. 

Postdoc "Happy Hour" at the Grad House

Event ran Friday, September 22, 2023 from 3:00-4:00 pm (In-person)

Postdocs were welcome to join our final event of NPAW, 2023. Our “Happy Hour” event was a great opportunity to meet other postdocs from across the university and enjoy some free tasty food and beverages.