Prof. Dr. Anne Maass

How did you come to your current position?

I did my PhD in Magdeburg, focusing on functional MRI of memory networks in humans. After that I spent almost 3 years in Berkeley for my PostDoc to learn more about effects of Alzheimer's pathology using PET imaging on memory function, funded by a Helmholtz fellowship. The combined expertise in multimodal neuroimaging techniques in aging and disease made me a good candidate for a junior research group that was opened in 2019 at the DZNE in Magdeburg, where a new PET facility was built that time. Since March 2019 I am now on a tenure track position at the DZNE. 


What was your biggest professional challenge and how did you solve it?

My biggest professional challenge was related to my biggest personal challenge. In December 2020 I became a mom and at the same time we received a big SFB grant in Magdeburg that started in January 2021. I am co PI of two projects in this SFB and in addition had a PhD student and Postdoc to mentor. Thus I decided to work part time quite early after birth. Taking care of a newborn child and at the same time taking care of my team, give lectures and talks and manage different projects was the biggest challenge in my life. With support of my family and the understanding of my team members I luckily went through that first year. Things got easier now with the start of kindergarden. 


Who supports you in your career and how?

With respect to my academic career, my mentors / PIs supported me from the beginning (starting with the PhD). They gave me the opportunity to visit conferences early on, engaged me to give talks and brought me in contact with great researcher around the world. The exchange with other experts and collaborations were a cornerstone in my career. Personally, my family always supported me right from the start of my education. Finally, my friends and my colleagues, many of whom are also my friends, were always supportive and understanding when I was busy or stressed at work. 


Who or what inspires you most?

I get most inspired when I talk or listen to other scientists, on conferences , meetings or simply when having a coffee or dinner together. Communication and collaboration are the foundation of successful and exciting science. I like to think about new ideas when I am in the pool or outside going for a walk or for a run. Inspiration often needs detachment of work. 


Which memories do you associate with Magdeburg?

I have grown up in Magdeburg, did my Master studies here as well as my PhD. Thus I have plenty of memories. With regard to my Phd, I remember many fun nights with my colleagues at the Hasselbachplatz. I also attached a photo (© privat) from a visit of the Christmas market with my colleague David Berron and one of our scientific idols, Charan Ranganath, a memory researcher from California who visited us in Magdeburg. This was the first international collaboration that we started with an inspiring and fun researcher. 

Dr. Anne Maass_ Christmas_market


Which importance does career networks have for your professional career?



Which advice would you give to young women, who are at the beginning of their professional career?

When you have decided for a scientific career,you need to find a supportive mentor/ PI (you might also have a mentor in addition to your supervisor) and a topic that you are passionate about (e.g. for your PhD). A labrotation or internship can be helpful to learn about the topic, meet the team and the PI beforehand. Becoming an expert in your own little niche is also helpful for your career. Meeting other researchers at conferences and presenting your research internationally is extremely important (be visible). Start to collaborate early on. I can also recommend to use the resources in Magdeburg that specifically support young women (e.g. the FSN or Cometin program). Finally, the magic often happens outside you comfort zone. I gave so many talks in my life and I am still nervous beforehand. But when you succeeded , you will be very proud and happy.


Foto of Dr. Anne Maass at the 10th anniversary of the IKND

© privat

Dr. Anne Maass_Talk at 10th anniversary of the IKND

Last Modification: 19.03.2024 - Contact Person: Webmaster