Dear Pablo, you are a former MSCA fellow. Could you tell us a little bit about your experience?
It was a continuous learning process, from the early stage of the proposal preparation until the project execution itself. I worked on understanding heterologous production of eukaryotic membrane protein in microorganisms, within the group of Prof. Plückthun, Department of Biochemistry at the University of Zürich. Transfer of knowledge was bidirectional, and in my actual project dealing with antibiotic resistance due to metallo membrane protein, I am applying the experience gained in Zürich.
What aspect of the fellowship do you find most valuable for your career development as a researcher?
Having this prestigious fellowship allowed me to connect with international researchers and initiate long-term collaborations. Although it is an individual fellowship, it prepares you to apply for all types of grants. I also think that the fellowship gave me more independence in my work. Outreach activities are also a way of learning more about one’s work and how to transmit a message in a simpler manner.
What is life in Europe like outside the office?
European lifestyle has always been appealing to me. Switzerland, in particular Zurich, is always on top of the list for the best places to live. It is a very cosmopolitan city, so you are not alone as an expat and there are many sources of information and helpful advice. You get in touch with different cultures, can easily travel to amazing places and this contributes to one’s personal enrichment.
Depending on where you come from, it can be difficult to understand some of the regulations at the beginning.
Living abroad allows you to see things from a different perspective, not only from a scientific point of view but also in terms of personal development.
Do you have any advice for other young researchers from CELAC who are considering applying for a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellowship?
It can be a long process but it is worthwhile! It is one of the most admired fellowships worldwide. It is well paid, you have money to attend conferences, a travel allowance, resources for consumables in the lab and a career exploratory allowance.
My advice: get in contact with a scientist you want to learn from and work hard on writing an outstanding innovative proposal with the help of EURAXESS, the National Contact Points and the Marie Curie Alumni Association.
You are also the chair of the Marie Curie Alumni Association Argentina chapter. Tell us about the objectives and foreseen activities of the association.
Created in 2014, the Argentinian Chapter of the MCAA encourages local networking, recruits new members to the Association and increases the visibility of the MSCA within Argentina.
A set of activities are planned in order to support our platform for the networking of ex-Scholars and mentoring of new potential candidates: Workshops on “How to apply for a Marie Curie Grant”; participation in national conferences where members can advertise the Marie Curie Actions by means of poster presentations, talks, or stands; and further active presence in social networks.
We have already organised scientific outreach events for the general public: for example to promote discussion on the role of women in STEM, and workshops to disseminate MSCA.
Furthermore, we are also interested in starting actions to improve funding opportunities and the access of non-European MSCA fellows to EU programmes.
EURAXESS CELAC is seeking Marie Skłodowska-Curie Fellows
Are you a former Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow? Are you from Latin America or the Caribbean? Would you like to share your experience with your peers?
Contact us by email email@example.com to discuss collaboration opportunities and help us promote the European Research Area.
Membership of the MCAA is free of charge, and open to any past or present Marie Curie researcher, regardless of the type of MSCA grant received, length of mobility periods, nationality, scientific discipline or current occupation.
Contact the Argentina Marie Curie Alumni Association for more details.
In CELAC, there is also a chapter in Brazil.