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Postdoc Information

Last updated April 20, 2022

What academic seminars occur in the BBE division? How do I get on the mailing list for these seminars?

The BBE division hosts several different seminars. Seminars will be advertised on the postdoc mailing list. You should be added to this list automatically. If you are not receiving these emails, please contact Stefany Nielsen (snielsen@caltech.edu).

For more news, you can also sign up for the BBE digest.

I am applying for a postdoc fellowship. What paperwork does Caltech require me to fill out?

BBE typically requires that you inform the division that you will be applying for a fellowship. You should contact your adviser as well as grants manager about how to proceed. Keep in mind that your grant manager will need 2-3 weeks lead time to process your fellowship application. There is also a funding opportunities website that you can sign up for. Click create subscription to be added to the mailing list:

Whom should I contact regarding maintenance issues in my building?

Emergencies should be reported to EHS: 626-395-5000

For non-emergencies: Jesse Flores (floresj@caltech.edu) is the BBE Facilities manager and he can be notified regarding lab equipment/safety concern.

Maintenance issues can also be reported through Access. Log in with your Caltech credentials, go to AiM Customer portal, and click on facilities.

Some contacts for specific buildings are below:

  • Alles/Kerckhoff/Church: Joan Sullivan (sully@caltech.edu)
  • Beckman Behavioral Biology: Jessica Silva (jssilva@caltech.edu)
  • Broad: Janie Malone (janie@caltech.edu)
  • Braun: Laurinda Truong (truongl@its.caltech.edu)
  • Beckman Institute: Susan Ruffins (str@caltech.edu)
  • Chen Neuroscience: Sue Zindle (szindle@caltech.edu)

Can I get a mailbox as a postdoc?

Postdocs can have a mailbox as long as there is room to add them. Contacts for specific buildings are below. Include your lab name in the email.

  • Alles/Kerckhoff/Church: Lauren Breeyear (lbreey10@caltech.edu)
  • Beckman Behavioral Biology:¬†Jessica Silva (jssilva@caltech.edu)
  • Braun: Laurinda Truong (truongl@its.caltech.edu)
  • Broad: Janie Malone (janie@caltech.edu)
  • Beckman Institute: Pat Anguiano (pat2010@caltech.edu) or Susan Ruffins (str@caltech.edu)
  • Chen Neuroscience: Sue Zindle (szindle@caltech.edu)

How do I get after-hours access to my building or other buildings that I work in?

You should automatically be given after-hours access to the building that your lab is in. If this does not happen, or you need access to another BBE building, email Stefany Nielsen (snielsen@caltech.edu). In your email, include your UID, lab affiliation, and (for buildings other than the location of your lab) why you need access.

A few specific building contacts are below. For buildings outside of BBE, you will need to contact the relevant division.

  • Beckman Behavioral Biology:¬†Jessica Silva (jssilva@caltech.edu)
  • Beckman Institute: Susan Ruffins (str@caltech.edu)
  • Braun: Laurinda Truong (truongl@its.caltech.edu)
  • Broad: Janie Malone (janie@caltech.edu)
  • Chen Neuroscience: Sue Zindle (szindle@caltech.edu)

I would like to host an academic event at Caltech. What spaces can be reserved for use by the Caltech community?

Caltech has several general spaces that can be reserved:

There are also several spaces within departments that can be reserved. These spaces may ask that you request extra trash cans from facilities, and, obviously, clean up your mess. Contacts are list below:

  • Beckman Institute courtyard: Rick Jackson, BI administrator (rickj@caltech.edu).
  • Dabney Lounge: Cecilia Lu (cecilial@caltech.edu)
  • Keck Institute for Space Studies courtyard: Michele Judd (michele.a.judd@jpl.nasa.gov).¬†
  • Gates Thomas patio: Lynn Seymour, EAS department administrator (lynnb@caltech.edu)
  • Courtyard behind East Bridge: Jo Ann Hasbach, assistant to PMA department administrator (jhasbach@caltech.edu) and Delmy Emerson, director of Facilities (delmy.emerson@caltech.edu)
  • BBE room reservations: /people/staff/room-reservations

Is there a list of Caltech clubs?

List of clubs can be found here.

I am an incoming postdoc looking for off campus housing, is there a listserv for this?

Yes, the Caltech community advertises houses and apartments for rent on marketplace. Email marketplace-owner@caltech.edu or marketplace-request@caltech.edu with questions. You can also visit this website.

I walk/bike/carpool/take public transit to work, does Caltech have an incentive program for this?

Yes, Caltech has extensive incentives, detailed on the Parking and Commuter Services website.

What childcare options does Caltech provide to postdocs?

Here are different options for childcare.

On Caltech's main campus, there is the Caltech Child Care Center (CCC). The CCC accepts children as young as six months. It aims to include STEM activities in the program for each age group and promotes organization and order in children's schedule and play. The CCC gives principle investigators priority; wait times for postdocs depends on the age group and timing, ranging from months to years.

Caltech and JPL also partner with the Child Education Center (CEC) in La Canada near the JPL campus. The CEC accepts children as young as 2 months. Its program centers on holistic learning, developing emotional awareness and communication, and emphasizes "outdoor classrooms" to facilitate hands on learning. The CEC gives any employee (including postdocs) from JPL and Caltech equal priority and has slightly larger class sizes, making wait times shorter depending on age group. Costs between CCC and CEC are comparable.

Independent day cares are available in Pasadena and Altadena. These are usually in-home, may offer language immersion, and are usually small in size. Wait times can be quite variable. The international center has a nice list of some options here.

Caltech does offer some financial assistance for eligible families.

Does the BBE division have a stock room? Where?

Yes, the VWR Stockroom is in 141 Beckman Institute. Fisher Scientific will be opening their new stockroom in 181 Alles (Spring 2022)

How do I fill out my tax forms?

  • Around tax time, the Caltech Office of International Students and Scholars will send out an email notification to all nonresident postdocs informing them about upcoming tax workshops and providing information on tax assistance that is available to them.
What do I need to do when my postdoc appointment is over?
  • Contact Stefany Nielsen (snielsen@caltech.edu) in BBE Postdoctoral Scholars Program at least 30 days prior to your last day so that she can process a Departing Faculty Arrangements form.

More resources: