Applications open for science writing workshop

computer keyboard, cup of coffee, notebook, and pencil on yellow background
Image credit: Marco Verch, Flickr. CC BY 2.0.

The Department of Neuroscience at Washington University School of Medicine is accepting applications for a new Workshop in Science Communication. The program will help advance the communication skills of graduate and postdoctoral trainees at the medical school and provide the foundations for interviewing, narrative storytelling, news writing and working with an editor.

Workshop participants will receive a $1,000 stipend, commit 2–3 hours per week over the course of the 12-week program and produce 4–6 articles for the Department of Neuroscience website.

Applications are due September 10, 2021.

Workshop activities

Participants will

  • receive a 2-hour group training session at the beginning of the workshop on best practices in science writing, including interviewing, crafting story structure, following ethical standards and writing with clarity and appeal.
  • complete 4–6 writing assignments over 12 weeks that will be published on the department website. These can include profiles, Q&As, news announcements and featured publication articles.
  • be supported by an editor who will help them develop their stories, prepare for interviews, craft article structure and edit drafts.

How to apply

Interested grad students and postdocs who are full-time trainees in the School of Medicine can apply by emailing a statement in 500 words or less to Kerry Grens at explaining why they want to participate in the workshop and describing any experiences in science communication, such as blogs, social media, outreach/volunteering or reporting.

Applicants should also provide an email from their current supervisor indicating their support for the applicant to be involved in the workshop. The deadline is September 10, 2021.

Two participants will be selected for the fall workshop.


  • The fall workshop runs September 27, 2021 to December 17, 2021.
  • Application deadline is September 10, 2021 at 11:59 PM CST.
  • Applicants will be notified of their selection status September 17, 2021.

The program is led by Kerry Grens, the media marketing administrator for the Department of Neuroscience, who will mentor workshop participants and serve as their editor for all assignments. Before joining the department this year, Grens was a journalist for 17 years, serving as a reporter and editor for print, online, radio and tv news outlets, including Reuters Health and WHYY. For eight years, she mentored interns in her role as the news director of The Scientist magazine. Grens’s experience uniquely positions her to advance researchers’ ability to share their work with the broader scientific community and the public.