Outstanding Mentor of Junior Faculty: Jennifer Black, PhD

April 07, 2021

Image with caption: Jennifer Black, PhD

Jennifer Black, PhD

Jennifer Black, PhD, of the UNMC Eppley Institute, will receive the Outstanding Mentor of Junior Faculty Award at the annual faculty meeting, which will be held virtually through Zoom at 3 p.m. on April 15.

Dr. Gold to address faculty

UNMC Chancellor Jeffrey P. Gold, MD, will give his annual address to the faculty, titled "Gratitude and Altitude: Expressing Thanks and Achieving New Heights in Challenging Times" at the annual faculty meeting. The virtual awards ceremony will be accessible to the UNMC community via Zoom during the event and archived afterward.

  • Name: Jennifer Black, PhD
  • Title: Professor, Eppley Institute
  • Joined UNMC: December 2011
  • Hometown: Buenos Aires, Argentina

What are the greatest rewards of mentoring?

I have had several influential mentors during my training and academic career who taught me the value of mentoring and caring guidance. Helping junior investigators recognize their strengths and build on their accomplishments to achieve success are great rewards of mentoring. Successfully supporting them during difficult times and guiding them toward independence are also very rewarding. I take pleasure in seeing mentees grow in confidence and share their excitement over each paper published, each grant awarded and every recognition and award that comes their way.

Describe a moment in your career when you realized you had picked the right occupation.

In high school, I was set on a path to study languages and literature. Everything changed when an exceptional teacher introduced me to biology in 10th grade. My first discovery as a graduate student cemented my love of research and I have never looked back.

What are the biggest challenges you face as a mentor?

Giving mentees space to follow their own hunches and make their own mistakes can be a challenge. Uncertainty about giving the right advice can also be challenging.

How do you know when you've been successful as a mentor? When mentees are confident, independent, and successful in their own research and begin to provide mentoring and advice to their own trainees.


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Nicki O'Neil
April 08, 2021 at 9:22 PM

Congratulations Dr. Black on a well-deserved honor.

Jawed Siddiqui
April 07, 2021 at 4:48 PM


Ed Rau
April 07, 2021 at 7:49 AM

Congratulations Jenny! It's good to see you recognized for all the work you do.