The PhD Booster Project
If basic research is vital for the development of new medical treatments, this work often remains unknown, misunderstood or unattractive for a wider public and especially for a large number of private donors. The PhD booster project is a creative and innovative fundraising programme of the Faculty of Medicine targeting private donors. It will promote the thesis of up to 5 PhD students in basic research in life sciences with the aim of raising a total of 250'000 CHF from private sources. Every selected PhD student will have the opportunity to benefit from a 50’000.-CHF grant from a private donor. The grants will be disbursed in 2019 and will cover 70% of one-year salary (35’000.-CHF) and the remaining 30% (15’000.-CHF) will be used as a credit for an international experience such as a stay in a lab abroad or the participation to an event.
The project in 3 steps
- Candidates will be auditioned by a board committee led by the doctoral school. They will have three minutes to present their thesis in a clear, concise and convincing way to a non-scientific audience.
- The 5 selected candidates will receive coaching to present their thesis in front of the camera. Videos will be produced and integrated to pill-shaped USB keys.
- The “pills” will be part of a medication box branded “Faculty of Medicine” along with a package insert explaining the aims of the campaign.
Conditions of participation
- PhD students in basic research in life sciences, at the end of the 1st, 2nd or in the 3rd year may apply.
- The thesis will be presented orally in English only.
- Candidates are requested to inform the thesis director about their participation.
- The selected 5 PhD students should agree with the following:
- Prepare as well as possible for the video recording
- Participate in the coaching sessions
- Respect the process and the schedule
- Prepare a 1-page summary of the thesis in French and English (only for selected candidates)
- Provide a copy of the thesis report for the donor
- Fixed funding requested up to CHF 50,000 per thesis
- Play the game!
- You can benefit from a 50’000.-CHF grant from a private donor, split into 70% of one-year salary (35’000.-CHF) and 30% (15’000.-CHF) for international experience.
- You will have the opportunity to present your work to dozens of prospects and maybe catch their interest on a longer run! Initial feedback from some donors on this innovative project is already extremely positive. However, please note that the Faculty of Medicine is not in a position to guarantee the 5 grants.
- You will develop communication skills and outreach capacity, project presentation and persuasion skills that will be useful throughout your career.
- You will be accompanied and coached throughout the entire process.
A committee board composed of both scientists and non-scientists will judge the participants based on a 3-minute presentation, according to the following criteria:
- Quality of the thesis project
- Structure of the presentation and didactics
- Outreach effort (accessible for a non-scientific audience)
- Motivation and communication skills
To support the presentation, a maximum of 3 (non-animated) images in PPT format can be used
- 20th June - Online Application deadline
- 25th June - auditions and selection
- July - Preparation and two coaching sessions (group and individual)
- 1st to 15thAugust – Video recording
- Mid-September – Launching of the campaign
- October to December - Follow-up and PhD booster funding results