I want to begin this letter by recalling my thoughts from exactly one year ago:

I think we all hoped that 2021 would include a post-pandemic celebration. Until the youngest in our community are eligible for vaccination, many of us will continue to experience pandemic restrictions—and sometimes pandemic fatigue. But we are getting there. One step, one study, one vaccine at a time. I said it last December, and I’ll say it again now: May next year bring continued progress and abundant hope for a better tomorrow.

We are now at the end of 2022, and I can confidently say that this past year was marked by continued progress. I saw progress in my personal life, progress in NICHD research labs, progress in NICHD fellows’ careers, and progress in science in general as NIH continues to push for equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility in STEM fields. I don’t think we will ever have a post-pandemic celebration, per se. The pandemic (and its aftermath) continues to affect too many people. What we can celebrate, though, is the perseverance to learn more and apply that knowledge to prepare for, prevent, and manage threats to human health and wellness when they arise.

I encourage you to take every opportunity possible over this next year to experience the career development and learning opportunities at NIH. This includes not only attending workshops and seminars, but also networking with your peers and mentors to share ideas, triumphs, and challenges. The 17th Annual Fellows Retreat Recap and the NICHD DIR & DIPHR Year in Review are great places to start learning what your colleagues are up to. You can find many more opportunities in The Rep Report and the December announcements and events.

Like this year, may next year bring continued progress and abundant hope for a better tomorrow.

Your Editor in Chief,
Shana R. Spindler, PhD

This newsletter is for NICHD fellows and by NICHD fellows. We want to hear from you! Please send your questions, comments, and ideas to our editor at shana.spindler@nih.gov.