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Coffee Conversations – Post-doctoral non-academic career paths


Doctorate – and then...?
Exploring nonacademic career paths for doctorate holding scientists

Post-doctoral career paths can vary widely, both within and outside academia. 

The event series “Coffee Conversations” offers you the opportunity to discuss career options with former scientists, who pursued a career outside of academia. Invited speakers will reflect on their career paths and experiences, and will explain their approach to career planning after finishing their dissertation.

After a brief presentation by our guest, we will give you the opportunity to ask your questions. We will discuss goals and experiences related to the time after defending a dissertation. All questions about career ideas and choices are welcome.

This series is organized by the Leipzig Science Network and Leipzig University (Academic Staff Development at the Department of Research and Transfer & the Initiative TalentTransfer at the Career Services).

Events in 2024

1st Date

Presentation on June 13th, 2024

Location: Leibniz-Intitut für Geschichte und Kultur des östlichen Europa

Speaker: Dr. Stefan Weppelmann Dr. Stefan Weppelmann

Dr. Stefan Weppelmann is Director of the Museum of Fine Arts Leipzig. He studied art history and communication sciences at the University of Münster and completed his doctorate on Spinello Aretino and 14th century Tuscan painting. Before coming to Leipzig, he worked for the Staatliche Museen zu Berlin and the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna. He usually deals with art from the Renaissance to the present day as part of major and international exhibitions. His perspectives and methods draw equally on the past and the present, exploring points of contact and analogies. In his museum work, he is concerned with creating connections through art. Opportunities that arise from a diversity-sensitive approach and participatory projects for the institution and its development also play a key role.

Events in 2023

1st Date

Presentation on March 21st, 2023

Location: Online

Speaker: Dr. Angela Loschke Dr. Angela Loschke

Dr. Angela Loschke studied cultural studies, communication and media studies, and political science in Leipzig and Paris. She then completed her doctorate in Global Studies at the University of Leipzig on the history of South Africa in the United Nations. Research stays took her to New York, Oslo, Stockholm and South Africa. She gained work experience at the Goethe-Institut in Shanghai and as a project manager for EU capacity building projects with third countries at TU Dresden. In 2019, she joined the Federal Foreign Office and graduated from the Higher Diplomatic Service in 2021. Since then, she has been a desk officer in the European Union's Common Security and Defense Policy (CSDP) unit at headquarters in Berlin.

Events in 2022

3rd Date

Presentation on September 21st, 2022

Location: Sächsische Aufbaubank, Gerberstraße 5, 04105 Leipzig

Speaker: Dr. Katrin Leonhardt Dr. Katrin Leonhardt

Dr. Katrin Leonhardt has been Chairwoman of the Executive Board of Sächsische Aufbaubank-Förderbank- since July 2020. Previously, she worked for KfW Bankengruppe in Frankfurt a. M. and Berlin for 20 years, including as Director and Head of Individual Financing & Public Clients from 2018 to 2020 and as Director and Division Head of KfW Mittelstandsbank from 2013 to 2018. Her first professional position took her to the Saxon State Ministry of the Interior in Dresden from 1994 to 2000, where she worked as an officer and head of department for housing promotion. In 1996, Katrin Leonhardt received her doctorate (Dr. rer. pol.) from Leipzig University, where she had previously graduated with a degree in economics. She also earned a Master of Arts degree from the University of Sussex in 1991.

2nd Date

Presentation on May 18th, 2022

Location: Online

Speaker: Dr. Sarah Maier Dr. Sarah Maier

Dr. Sarah Maier studied Communication and Media Studies, Romance Studies and French Studies in Leipzig and Paris, completed the structured PhD program in Translatology and Applied Linguistics and received her PhD in co-tutelle de thèse. After working at the department as a research assistant, she worked at pioneer communications GmbH as a PR consultant for international and national clients. In 2019, she moved to GISA GmbH and worked there as Campaign Manager and Lead Digital Channels. Since April 2022, she has been responsible for Corporate Communications & Marketing as Unit Director.

1st Date

Presentation on February 9th, 2022

Location: Online

Speaker: Dr. Christoph Leuze Dr. Christoph Leuze

Dr. Christoph Leuze is director of the Visualization Core at the Stanford Wu Tsai Institute where his research focuses on virtual and augmented reality technologies for medical applications, and founder of Nakamir, a company aiming to enhance first responder training capabilities with augmented reality. He founded the Stanford Medical Mixed Reality program, an institute-wide initiative to bring together academia, clinic and industry to establish and improve virtual and augmented reality applications for patient care. During his work Dr. Leuze is working closely with engineers and clinicians to understand how virtual and augmented reality can enhance a clinician's capabilities and improve patient care by visualizing critical information directly in the user's field of view. Dr. Leuze has studied at Leipzig and Chiba University and received the Otto Hahn medal of the Max Planck Society for his PhD thesis at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig.

Events in 2021

1st Date

Presentation on February 17th, 2021

Location: Online

Speaker: Dr. Doychin Stanchev Dr. Doychin Stanchev

Dr. Doychin Stanchev studied pharmacology in Sofia, Bulgaria. He obtained his doctorate from Leipzig University (Faculty of Medicine, Rudolf Boehm Institute for Pharmacology and Toxicology). Afterwards, he worked as a post-doc at the University of California San Francisco and the University of Tübingen. He is the owner of the pharmacy Hulb Apotheke, Böblingen.

2nd Date

Presentation on April 28th, 2021

Location: Online

"A conversation between PD Dr. Ronny Grunert and Prof. Dr. Utz Dornberger"PD Dr. Ronny Grunert

PD Dr. Ronny Grunert is co-founder of Next-3D, an enterprise that produces patient-specific 3D-printed implants and instruments. They received the IQ Innovation Award Leipzig in 2019. Already in 2007, together with a colleague, he founded Phacon GmbH, finalist of the 2010 German Founders‘ Prize, creating anatomy models for surgery training. PD Dr. Grunert studied Physics Technology / Biomedical Technology with a specialization in medical physics. Together with Prof. Dr. Winkler he is leading a research group at the “Klinik und Poliklinik für Neurochirurgie” at Leipzig University.

Prof. Dr. Utz Dornberger

Prof. Dr. Utz Dornberger is leader of the International SEPT Competence Centre (Small Enterprise Promotion + Training) and professor for Development Economics at Leipzig University. He is particularly interested in the area of growth promotion of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Germany and world-wide. His work focuses on innovation in SMEs, innovation policy, entrepreneurship promotion, and internationalization. In 2006, he founded “SMILE – die gründerinitiative” at Leipzig University, which has already supported more than 572 newly founded companies originating from the scientific community in Leipzig.

3rd Date

Presentation on July 14th, 2021

Location: New Town Hall Leipzig

Speaker: Dr. Annika Gröger Dr. Annika Gröger

Dr. Annika Gröger studied law in Halle (Saale) and Paris. She received her doctorate from the Chair of Criminal Law and Philosophy of Law/Legal Theory at Martin Luther University Halle-Wittenberg on the subject of the right to inspect files, taking into account the European Convention on Human Rights. The second state examination led her to Leipzig. There she first worked for the Mayor for youth, social affairs, health and schools, then led an education management project for five years. Since 2015, she has been an advisor to the Mayor of the City of Leipzig.

4th Date

Presentation on December 7th, 2021

Location: Online

Speaker: Dr. Brigitta Triebel Dr. Brigitta Triebel

Dr. Brigitta Triebel studied Cultural Studies, Political Science and East and Southeast European History at Leipzig University and at Comenius University in Bratislava. She received her doctorate in European Studies at Leipzig University. Her dissertation focused on the foreign cultural policy of Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia towards countries in Africa and Asia. Since 2019, she has been the director of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation's Office in Kharkiv (Ukraine).

Events in 2020

1st Date

Presentation on June 10th, 2020

Location: Online

Speaker: Dr. Markus Streicher Dr. Markus Streicher

Dr. Markus Streicher studied physics and computer engineering in Leipzig, Bremen and Prescott/Arizona. He obtained his doctorate for research conducted at the MPI for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig. He currently works as an engineer at the R&D department of Swiss Timing, a company of the Swatch Group, in Leipzig.

2nd Date

Presentation on September 23rd, 

Location:: Online

Speaker: Dr. Ulrich Meyer Dr. Ulrich Meyer

Dr. Ulrich Meyer studied mechanical engineering at TU Braunschweig. He obtained his doctorate in sanitary and environmental engineering at TU Darmstadt. He started his career at Veolia Wasser GmbH in Leipzig. He advanced to senior management level before becoming the technical managing director at Leipziger Wasserwerke (municipal waterworks)..

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