Student Postdoc Leadership Council (SPLC)



The SPLC will provide a space for students and postdocs participating in MACH research activities to convene in a friendly environment to share research, elicit peer review, spark collaborations, and provide a support network for the career development of members. We envision the SPLC as a self-directed community that is responsive to member interests, while also serving as a feedback loop to the MACH Executive Council (EC) to voice student and postdoc ideas, experiences, or concerns.


We value creating a space where all students and postdocs can express themselves in a friendly peer-supportive environment, regardless of members’ prior background, training, race, gender, age, religion, sexual orientation, disability, language ability, or country of origin. We recognize that members will be at vastly different stages in their educational and career development. Despite these differences, we promote creating a learning environment in line with these values that encourages and advances the research activities and careers of all members.



The SPLC will be co-chaired by a graduate student and a postdoc. These co-chairs may be nominated by MACH advisors for a leadership position as in year 1, or the SPLC may choose an alternative governance structure (e.g., elections). If the SPLC has difficulty defining its leadership structure, MACH administrative staff should work with members to help facilitate the process. We suggest that co-chairs lead for a term of 1 year.

Leadership Council

The SPLC will retain a leadership council of members to support co-chairs and encourage the development of the SPLC activities. These may be nominated by faculty advisors, or members who volunteer to take on leadership roles. The leadership council is encouraged to revisit this proposal annually and adjust as deemed necessary.

Additional Details

Basic Expectations and Time Commitment

  • The co-chairs will work with the Administrative Director to convene monthly Hub-wide ‘lab meetings’ at which students and postdocs can receive peer feedback.
  • Co-chairs will attend monthly MACH EC meetings and report back to the SPLC, as well as raising any ideas or concerns that surface from the SPLC to the EC.
  • The SPLC will prepare an annual written 4-page summary Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats (SWOT) analysis, which will be presented to the EC.

Goals For Year 1

The SPLC co-chairs will work with its members to codify the governance structure, expectations and time commitment for the SPLC, formalize our vision and values statements, and determine member activities.

Space for Innovation

We have deliberately kept the initial expectations and time commitment of the SPLC minimal to allow flexibility for the group to innovate and develop organically. Students and postdocs are encouraged to adaptively develop the SPLC by forming subgroups focused on different themes. For example, we hope to find ways to operationalize the following ideas into the future development of the SPLC:

  • Research and methods focused subgroups or breakout groups
  • DEIJA (Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, Justice, Access)
  • Climate justice
  • Professional and career development, advising and cross-mentoring
  • Technical support, data sharing
  • Student recruitment
  • Feedback on MACH project development