The University of Nevada, Reno Postdoctoral Association (UNRPA) is a volunteer organization formed in 2021 both by and for the University's postdocs.
Our mission is to improve the postdoctoral experience both at the University and in academia. We do this by supporting fellow postdocs in your transitions to and from the University; enhancing your research and training opportunities while here; and advocating for the inclusive and equitable transformation of academia. We empower postdocs to become bold and effective leaders in academia, industry and community.
All postdoctoral scholars at the University of Nevada, Reno are automatically included in UNRPA and welcome to attend meetings, events and discussions relevant to postdocs.
Stanislav Kolencik, Ph.D.
Stanislav is a postdoctoral scholar working in various biology fields, mostly with an emphasis on Biodiversity, Ecology, and Evolution. His current research focuses on improving our knowledge of ectoparasite biodiversity and understanding of coevolutionary patterns between hosts and their parasites. Stanislav is the current Chair for the University of Nevada, Reno Postdoctoral Association. He is passionate about improving the environment and opportunities for postdocs at the University, as well as bringing them together. He loves being active, finding new challenges, and discovering new places or hobbies.
David Stupski, Ph.D.
David is a postdoc working in the Mechanical Engineering department (but enjoys reminding people that he's actually an ecologist). His research aims to understand how flying insects are so good at tracking smells down to their source and whether or not these principles can be applied to robotics. He is the current Operations Manager of the University of Nevada, Reno Postdoctoral Association. He is passionate about data visualization, improving academic working conditions and bar trivia.
Arely Perez Lopez, Ph.D.
Events & Social Media Coordinator
Arely is a postdoctoral researcher in plant science at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology. Broadly, her research integrates bioengineering strategies to improve drought stress tolerance and water use efficiency in plants. She is currently the Events and Social Media Coordinator of the Postdoctoral Association, pursuing to enhance professional development and active learning of the postdoctoral community. She feels inclined to laboratory and greenhouse work as well as enjoys knitting, dancing, and painting by avocation.
Sarpras Swain, Ph.D.
Sarpras is a postdoc in the Physiology and Cell Biology department with an interest in the role of mitochondrial calcium uniporter (MCU) in central synaptic development and function and disease-related pathologies. The study uses multiple techniques (acute viral perturbation, biochemical assays and functional/structural imaging) to better understand the role of MCU in mitochondrial activity and energy production in metabolic activity of mammalian CNS funtionality. He is the current Finance Officer of the Postdoctoral Association.
The chair oversees the effective running of the association with close support from the officers. A key focus of this position is enhancing postdoc recognition and the association’s long-term sustainability within the university environment through advancing relationships with the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs, administration, relevant faculty, student groups, and associations, as the official representative of UNRPA. Further, the Chair collaboratively networks with postdoctoral associations and other relevant higher education stakeholders. Within the association, the Chair provides strong leadership and guidance in developing actionable initiatives that contribute to the association's longer-term strategic directions.
The Operations Manager will acquire all the Chair's responsibilities when the Chair is unable to perform them and assist in fulfilling the Chair's duties as needed, through agreement with the Chair. Other duties include managing meeting agendas and minutes, and disseminating a draft of these minutes to UNRPA members via the e-mail listserv (or another form of communication, e.g., Slack Channel) before the next meeting, and the efficient archiving of information. The incumbent provides administrative support to the association’s endeavors and relevant stakeholders, including that relevant information, is communicated to postdoc members.
The Events and Social Media Coordinator develops initiatives and resources to enhance the postdoctoral experience at the University, by creating opportunities for professional development and networking for postdoctoral scholars, in addition to organizing events that raise the profile of postdocs and highlight their work at the campus scale. Responsibilities of this position include community-building both within the postdoctoral community, and within the larger University community including students, staff, and faculty. Other responsibilities include developing and maintaining the Postdoctoral Association’s communications channels and online outreach activities.
The Finance Officer is responsible for the financial status of the Association. The incumbent will manage and monitor the expenditure of funding and provide regular reporting on the financial health of the Association to the directors and relevant University parties and maintain compliance with university regulations. A key focus of this position is to develop initiatives that enhance the association’s financial health and longevity, including developing alternative and non-traditional mechanisms to obtain funding that lie outside of the University.