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Author Topic: Honorarium for post-doc's lecture  (Read 20506 times)
gladiolususul
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« on: March 27, 2012, 11:18:35 PM »

Hi everyone,

I apologize if this has been asked already, but I tried searching on the forums and haven't found anything. I'm a member of a student group in my college and we asked one of the post-docs (who has advised us for other group events) to give a lecture related to her work (that would be open to the entire university community). We really want to recognize her for the time and effort she's taking to share her knowledge, but aren't sure what would be an appropriate honorarium/gift to give on behalf of the group. Any suggestions would be appreciated! Thanks so much.
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galactic_hedgehog
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« Reply #1 on: March 28, 2012, 12:25:09 AM »

Take her to dinner.
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westcoastgirl
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« Reply #2 on: March 28, 2012, 1:04:42 PM »

Hi everyone,

I apologize if this has been asked already, but I tried searching on the forums and haven't found anything. I'm a member of a student group in my college and we asked one of the post-docs (who has advised us for other group events) to give a lecture related to her work (that would be open to the entire university community). We really want to recognize her for the time and effort she's taking to share her knowledge, but aren't sure what would be an appropriate honorarium/gift to give on behalf of the group. Any suggestions would be appreciated! Thanks so much.

Usually student groups have a small budget for this sort of stuff. Even a small honorarium would be appreciated--say, fifty bucks or so. I've been invited to speak a few times. For most occasions, I didn't receive anything but a thank-you card. I was perfectly happy with that (and it's been nice to add it to the CV). One time, I received a nice sum of money--I was thrilled with that (it came unsolicited and was from a religious student's group. They had funding for this sort of thing).
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hoptoad
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« Reply #3 on: March 29, 2012, 12:46:09 PM »

I recommend putting the Postdoc's name on a neon board with an arrow pointing to the seminar room on the appropriate day and time, round up a large and engaged audience, give her a flattering introduction and thunderous applause at the end, and present a key to the university.

Seriously, though, I agree with the previous replies that any recognition/thanks are appreciated, so a little cash or dinner is nice or even a prompt thank you card.  The seminars I hated as a postdoc were the ones where I felt like I was invited only because I was local or convenient to ask because I didn't have to be thanked in any way (and most professors skipped the talk).
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gladiolususul
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« Reply #4 on: March 29, 2012, 3:58:01 PM »

Thanks so much for all of the suggestions - they really helped a lot!

We'll make sure to work on getting that key to the university :)
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bacardiandlime
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« Reply #5 on: March 29, 2012, 4:00:41 PM »

I've received $200 to $500 plus free accommodation for this type of talk (at post-doc stage).
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sagit
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« Reply #6 on: March 29, 2012, 10:07:52 PM »

I've received $200 to $500 plus free accommodation for this type of talk (at post-doc stage).

From student groups???
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bacardiandlime
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« Reply #7 on: March 30, 2012, 2:06:34 AM »

I've received $200 to $500 plus free accommodation for this type of talk (at post-doc stage).

From student groups???

From various groups. But I realise re-reading the OP, this is for someone at the same university. Dinner is probably fine.
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donstefano
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« Reply #8 on: March 30, 2012, 6:14:02 AM »

Not money. Money is only a good option if the honorarium covers the costs made by the speaker. If someone spent hours preparing and delivering, then 50USD is an insult. A 20USD bottle of wine however, is perfectly acceptable. - it's all about a token of appreciation, not about compensation.

As for dinner, I'm ambivalent - invite them to dinner, but make it easy to decline. When I'm invited somewhere, this takes a,lot of time, and especially i the evening, I often like to leave after the lecture without further obligations (but them I'm not a very social person)
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sagit
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« Reply #9 on: March 30, 2012, 7:41:12 PM »

Not money. Money is only a good option if the honorarium covers the costs made by the speaker. If someone spent hours preparing and delivering, then 50USD is an insult. A 20USD bottle of wine however, is perfectly acceptable. - it's all about a token of appreciation, not about compensation.

As for dinner, I'm ambivalent - invite them to dinner, but make it easy to decline. When I'm invited somewhere, this takes a,lot of time, and especially i the evening, I often like to leave after the lecture without further obligations (but them I'm not a very social person)

As someone who doesn't drink alcohol, I'd suggest the OP avoid the wine unless you know this person drinks that beverage.
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I like to think of the student as a mischievous badger.
westcoastgirl
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« Reply #10 on: May 01, 2012, 9:54:45 AM »

I've received $200 to $500 plus free accommodation for this type of talk (at post-doc stage).

From student groups???

I received 250 from a student group. I was invited back the next year and they said "this year, we only have 40 dollars to split between three speakers, so I think we'll skip the honorarium." Of course, I didn't care. From the little I know about RSOs, budgets vary widely from year to year.
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