Data Eclipse

Data Eclipse is a bi-monthly one-hour seminar that takes place Fridays from 5:30 to 6:30 in Barchi Library. Its goal is to promote a positive attitude in the NGG community, encouraging students to view mistakes as learning experiences, become more resilient to failure, and grow as a people and as scientists. Over Indian food and beers, NGG students share their failures, mistakes, and non-publishable data generating experiences, then discuss how we can interpret these experiences in a more positive way. Not only can it be cathartic for presenters, it can also grant solace and timely advice to audience members.

Spring 2017 Presenters

Mar. 31, 2017. “Changing routes in graduate school”: Shachee Doshi, Noam Roth, Isaac Perron and Sarah Ly shared experiences and advice on dealing with changing our mind about different routes in graduate school, from career decisions for the future to picking a rotation/thesis lab that’s totally out of our comfort zone.

Jan. 27, 2017. Candidacy exam preparation panel: Felicia Davatolhagh, Hannah Shoenhard and Nicole Hernandez, current 3nd-year NGG students, shared stories about the challenges they went through when they were preparing for the candidacy exam at the end of their 2nd year.

Previous Presenters

Dec. 2, 2016. Esteban Luna, a 4th-year NGG student, talked about the ups and downs in his research.

Sept. 30, 2016Previous first year panel: Kate Brynildsen, Mary Schreck and Kyra Schapiro, current 2nd-year NGG students, shared stories about their ups and downs in their first-year graduate school.

May 20, 2016. Alyse Thomas, a 5th-year NGG student, led a group discussion based on the article Mistakes Are Not All Created Equal. By sharing her own stories and inviting us to share ours, she helped us identify the four types of mistakes categorized in this article, and discussed ways we could handle them.

Feb. 19, 2016. Kait Folweiler, a 3rd-year NGG student, talked about her winding experience in trying to replicate a result that she had method. She shared the lessons she learned during the trouble-shooting process, such as considering the health of the tissue, figuring out the source of the noise in her recording system, managing her projects better by reducing multi-tasking, and communicating with her P.I. effectively.

Nov.13, 2015. Shachee Doshi, a 5th-year NGG student, shared her experience on her previous project and the lessons she learned from going through that period, including her attitudes and reactions towards failed experiments, communication strategies with faculty mentors, and how her love for and understanding about science grew deeper from that experience.


Links to articles

Jennifer Walker, Quartz— a personal account of mental illness in graduate school, systemic cultural problems with the way mental illness is treated in academia, and how one physics PhD addressed the challenges they faced

Eduardo Briceño, Mindset Works— a description of different types of mistakes, both positive and negative, and how we can learn from each of them

Wei Ji Ma and Cristina Alberini, Growing up in science— this program at NYU runs a conversation series where faculty members share their experiences and struggles in graduate school. The page also contains resources on self confidence, procrastination, failure, mentorship, and more.

Labmosphere— a blog created by a team of scientists aimed at “promoting mental health, emotional well-being, and positive culture in academic labs.” This site has a plethora of resources and well worth checking out!


Contact: Yunshu Fan at