STEM Career Talks

Check out our Summer 2023 Career Talk Series below!

These themed career talks allow anyone to learn about the wide diversity of STEM professions by hearing from experts in those fields. Conversations are open to the public and recorded for later viewing.

In each session we are joined by Berkeley Lab staff, Bay Area professionals, and other guest experts to talk about their careers and how they got there. 

Join our student or educator newsletters to be the first to hear about more career talks in 2023. 

Summer 2023 Recordings 

What approach to finding internships or STEM experiences are impactful? How do you manage expectations with your mentor and the project you have been assigned, and what steps might you take within the first few weeks that will help you have success? How do you sustain a relationship with your mentors and administrators from your program?

In our first Career Talk of 2023, we hear the answers to these questions from 4 experts on summer internships: Micah Folsom from Intel, Clarissa Bhargava from Berkeley Lab, Nia Jones from UC Berkeley, and Robert Posey from Texas Tech University

Why is Machine Learning important and how is it influential in everyday lives? What perspective do you need when collaborating with engineers and doctors in order to work with them? 

In our second Career Talk of 2023, we hear from Adam Yala from UC Berkeley, and Dr. Yan Zeng from Berkeley Lab on how Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence are making their way into cancer care and scientific research.

What types of tools and classes should a person take to get into environmental research? What are some misconceptions about the environmental research field? How can we change those perceptions for young scientists to thrive in the field?

In our third Career Talk of 2023, we hear from Berkeley Lab Scientists, Stijn Wielandt, Jessica Needham, and Bruno Gimenez about the steps and tools needed to get into the domain of applied environmental research. 

How does the government decide on what types of science to fund and how do our national needs shape those decisions? What areas of science are the U.S. government and other countries around the world specifically investing in right now? How welcoming are other countries in taking suggestions around energy policy? 

In our fourth Career Talk of 2023, we hear from 3 of Berkeley Lab's experts in government policies on scientific research: Jonathan Nurse, Katy Christiansen, and Priyanka Mohanty.

What is the Internet? How does ESNet differ from the general internet? Why is a dedicated research network necessary? Why can’t labs use the Internet to share all of their data? What is something exciting about your role in this project? What are some challenges one may face working with ESNet?

In our final Career Talk of 2023, we hear from managers, developers, and engineers in science networking discuss the core system of DOE-funded research: ESNet.

*This career talk was developed, organized, and hosted by the K-12 team’s Experiences in Research interns, Alejo, Julia, and Gregory. 

Summer 2022 Recordings

What one thing can you do in the first week to set yourself up for success? What mistakes do interns make and how do you recover? What makes you a competitive applicant, regardless of experience?

In our first Career Talk of 2022, we hear the answers to these questions from 3 experts on summer internships: Laleh Coté from Berkeley Lab, Leah Kalish from California Academy of Sciences, and Ira Young from UC Berkeley. As coordinators and mentors to countless students, they have seen it all when it comes to success and failure in a summer internship. 

How do you get involved with conducting research in college and beyond? What roles and responsibilities do lab members have at different stages of their career? 

In our second Career Talk of 2022, we hear the answers to these questions from 3 members of NorthenLab, a research team in Berkeley Lab's Biosciences Area headed by Dr. Trent Northen. Learn about their cutting-edge work on robot-driven EcoPODs, and how they work together as a Principal Investigator, postdoc, and scientific associate.

What does energy storage mean? How will the development of new energy technologies affect us? Why should we study this in space? 

In our third Career Talk of 2022, we hear the answers to these questions from the Executive Director of the Berkeley Lab Energy Storage Center Noël Bahktian, Nasa Scientist John Lawson, and SLAC Researcher Johanna Nelson Weker. They shared their STEM journeys, introduced us to Energy Storage Virtual Fields Trips and broadened our understanding of energy storage, especially in remote areas like the International Space Station. A special clip from NASA Astronaut Kayla Barron is included in the session. 

How can microgrids prepare our electrical system for the future of climate change? How do scientists and entrepreneurs work together to make the grid more resilient and effective? 

In our fourth Career Talk of 2022, we hear from Indigenous leaders, electrical engineers and grid experts on how their energy storage work helps address unique needs and build climate resilience.

This career Talk features content and experts from Berkeley Lab's Energy Storage Virtual Fields Trips.

How can science solutions be scaled to address the world's problems? How do scientists bridge the worlds of research and industry, and what winding paths do they take to get there?

In our fifth and final Career Talk of 2022, we hear from inventors, researchers, and entrepreneurs whose work is helping address societal problems. 

This talk was conceived, organized, and hosted by the K-12 team's Experiences in Research interns, Myra and Elvira

Summer 2023 Schedule

Hear from professionals at Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley on how making connections can lead to future opportunities. 

Watch the recording now!

What is AI and how is it being used in various industries? Learn how technological advancement is positively impacting society.

Join scientists and hear about their research conducted outside of traditional laboratory settings, to deepen our understanding of the diverse natural world. 

How do government policies shape scientific research? Hear from policy experts about the intersection of science, technology, and public interest making a difference in research. 

Summer 2022 Schedule

Flier for summer 2022 Career Talks, Fridays from 6/24 to 7/22 at 10am PT . All text and registration link mirrored on webpage at right.

Hear from Berkeley Lab's workforce development experts and scientists on how to make connections that can lead to future opportunities. Watch the recording now!

Learn how teams function in research and education from people at the different stages of their STEM career: from grad student, to postdoc, to principal investigator.

Join scientists from Berkeley Lab and beyond to hear about their work implementing and researching energy storage technologies, both on earth and aboard the International Space Station.

Hear from Indigenous leaders, electrical engineers and grid experts on how their energy storage work helps address unique needs and build climate resilience.

Berkeley Lab is always striving to bring science solutions to the world. In this session, scientists share how their work can change lives and protect our planet. 

*The 7/22 session, has been developed and produced by Experiences in Research interns, Myra and Elvira. 

Summer 2021 Schedule

Flier for summer 2021 career talks. All text mirrored in webpage to the right of image.

Making the Most of Your Experience

View the recording | Internships can be a gateway to a long and fruitful career in STEM. Hear from workforce development experts and current scientists on how to make connections and great impressions that can lead to future opportunities. This session will focus on opportunities at Department of Energy national laboratories.

The Future of Food and Farming 

View the recording | Technological innovations in agriculture and environmental science are crucial in combating climate change. Learn how scientists and chefs are changing the way we think about food. 

Data Science is Everywhere 

View the recording | Data Science has become the new category in research science. Our speakers will share how they use data science in their fields and what you need to know as a young researcher. 

New Materials on the Frontier 

View the recording | As we work towards a more sustainable future, new materials are being developed to reduce waste production, increase energy efficiency and expand technological advancement. Find out about some of the new materials being developed at Berkeley Lab.

Spring 2021 Schedule 

Flier for Spring 2021 career talks. All text mirrored in webpage to the right of image.

(Recording now available) Professional mentors are essential to success in STEM. What are some tools students and professionals use to build meaningful relationships? Learn more from this panel of mentors and their mentees. 

(Recording now available) What does the future of food look like? How can we improve nutritional value, drought resistance, or accessibility? We will be discussing all kinds of innovation and research in food. 

(Recording now available) How do we share science solutions with the world? Hear how entrepreneurial researchers start businesses and bring inventions to the market. 

Link to USPTO patent resources for students

(Recording now available) Technological innovations in energy can help us combat climate change. Learn about the renewable energy research currently being conducted. 

More coming soon 

Fall 2020 Schedule

Flier for Fall 2021 career talks. All text mirrored in webpage to the right of image.

(Recording now available) Science and fine arts might seem like polar opposite professions, but these panelists are here to prove you wrong. Learn how artistic skills can be used to complement research work. 

(Recording now available) Ever wonder what goes on behind the screens? Cybersecurity experts work on a wide variety of data privacy issues for scientists, institutions, consumers, and more. 

(Recording now available) Looking to travel for work? Researchers often travel for two reasons: to collaborate with other institutions or to collect data from field sites. Tune in to see how researchers in diverse subjects spend time outside of their labs. 

(Recording now available) Quantum science is often used in pop culture as a stand-in for super complicated science, but it's more approachable than you think! Learn about how the scientists and engineers are driving technological advancements in the science of the future. 

(Recording now available) Scientists and engineers put a lot of thought into creating the technology and tools that people use every day. Hear how creativity and technical expertise work hand-in-hand to produce science solutions for problems around the world.