A group activity during the 2019 workshop in Göttingen (photo: Peter Heller)

Building Bridges
The Fulbright-Cottrell Workshop

Dresden, June 12 - 14, 2023

Providing tools for success to current and future junior faculty in Germany

The Building Bridges workshop has been held annually since 2017. These workshops are an initiative that adapts aspects of two established programs offered by the Cottrell Scholar Collaborative to the German academic landscape: the CSC New Faculty Workshop and the CSC Academic Leadership Training Workshop.

The first workshop, "Bridges to Germany", was held in May 2017 in Mainz as part of the Cottrell Scholars Collaborative. Following the success of the first edition, Germany's Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) has funded suceessive editions: a second professional development workshop in June 2018 in Berlin, the third workshop in June 2019 in Göttingen, and a fourth, online workshop in October 2021. Participation in the workshop is free of charge.

Michael Wilczek & Yana Vaynzof, following the Fulbright-Cottrell Award ceremony at the 2018 workshop in Berlin (photo: Shane McMillan)


This workshop series has the following objectives:

  • Maximizing the chances of junior faculty for promotion by sharing the teacher-scholar skills that are key for obtaining a permanent position
  • Applying evidence-based methods on learning in the courses that lead to research success and optimize student learning
  • Debunking the myth of the research-and-teaching zero-sum game: top researchers are often the best educators and can bring universities to a higher level

Target Groups:

  • Postdoctoral researchers, junior group leaders, Juniorprofessor:innen, habilitated researchers, Privatdozent:innen, and equivalent who are working in chemistry, physics, astronomy, and related fields are welcome to attend.

The workshop offers hands-on training and active educational exchange between the participants and experienced faculty members, as well as academic leaders from Fulbright Germany and the Research Corporation for Science Advancement (RCSA). Participants will discover in this workshop a unique environment and excellent opportunity for professional development.


Participants listen intently at the 2019 workshop (photo: Peter Heller)

Feedback from past participants in the workshop series:

"Absolutely excellent workshop that should be mandatory for all junior faculty."

"Every junior faculty member would find it [the workshop] useful and helpful."

"The workshop is essential for junior faculty members on their way to full professorship."

"I learned a lot about teaching, some new details related to funding, and did do some potentially helpful networking."

"The "active teaching" lessons were very insightful. The contact with people just a few steps ahead in [their] career was encouraging."

"I liked the emphasis on the teaching side. I find teaching an essential part as we are responsible to equip the students with the knowledge and tools they need to drive our world forward."

"I learned a lot of tricks to make the most of combining teaching and research."

The workshop is sponsored by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research and the German-American Fulbright Commission, which administers the annual Fulbright-Cottrell Award in collaboration with the American Research Corporation for Science Advancement.

Confirmed Speakers (updates ongoing)

  • Dr. Diego Andrada, Universität des Saarlandes, Germany
  • Distinguished Univ. Prof. Karen Bjorkman, University of Toledo, USA
  • Majda Bratovič, Nature Communications, Germany
  • Dr. Andrew Feig, Senior Program Director, Research Corporation, USA
  • Prof. Dr. Claudia Felser, Max Planck Institut für Chemische Physik Fester Stoffe, Germany
  • Prof. Dr. Carla Fröhlich, North Carolina State University, USA
  • Prof. Dr. Olga Garcia Mancheño, Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster, Germany
  • Prof. Dr. Thomas Heine, Technische Universität Dresden, Germany
  • Prof. Dr. Rigoberto Hernandez, Johns Hopkins University, USA
  • Dr. Jasmin Herr, Gesellschaft Deutscher Chemiker (GDCh), Germany
  • Prof. Dr. Michael Hildreth, University of Notre Dame, USA
  • Prof. Dr. Nils Kröger, Technische Universität Dresden, Germany
  • Prof. Dr. Sabine Maier, Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, Germany
  • Jamie Moore, Program Officer, Fulbright Germany
  • Associate Prof. Kathryn Mouzakis, Loyola Marymount University, USA
  • Dr. Ilka Paulus, Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft (DFG), Germany
  • Dr. Silvia Ronco, Senior Program Director, Research Corporation, USA
  • Dr. Juliane Simmchen, Technische Universität Dresden, Germany
  • Dr. Günther Thiele, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany
  • Dr. Suzanne Tobey, Angewandte Chemie, Germany
  • Prof. Dr. Yana Vaynzof, Leibnitz-Institut für Festkörper- und Werkstoffforschung Dresden, Germany
  • Prof. Dr. Olalla Vázquez, Philipps-Universität Marburg, Germany
  • Prof. Dr. Rory Waterman, Associate Dean, University of Vermont, USA
  • Prof. Dr. Hongbin Zhang, Technische Universität Darmstadt, Germany





Prof. Dr. Carla Fröhlich, North Carolina State University, USA

Dr. Juliane Simmchen, Technische Universität Dresden, Germany

Prof. Dr. Yana Vaynzof, Leibnitz-Institut für Festkörper- und Werkstoffforschung Dresden, Germany

Prof. Dr. Olalla Vázquez, Philipps Universität Marburg, Germany