Postdoctoral Fellowships

Summary

Description Designed to attract qualified, promising scientists entering their professional career in the T1D research field; intended for those in a relatively early state in their career
Institutional Eligibility Domestic & foreign non-profit organizations; public & private universities, colleges, hospitals, laboratories; units of state & local governments; eligible agencies of the federal government
Applicant Eligibility Required: MD, DMD, DVM, PhD, or equivalent. Must not be simultaneously serving an internship or residency
Proposal Access and submit full applications (including research plans) via RMS360.
Terms Total dollar amount varies based on years of relevant experience. See the Postdoctoral Fellowship Allowances table
Human Subjects Research For a project proposing Human Subject Research, please review the Human Subject Research Guidelines.
Upcoming Deadlines See Grant Opportunities and Deadlines

Description

Postdoctoral fellowships are designed to attract qualified, promising scientists entering their professional career in the T1D research field. The applicant is required to work with a sponsor who can provide a training environment conducive to beginning a career in type 1 diabetes-relevant research. At the time of activating the award, the applicant must have a doctoral degree (PhD, MD, DMD, DVM), or the equivalent from an accredited institution and must not be simultaneously serving an internship or residency.

Eligibility

Applicant
The fellowships are intended for those in a relatively early stage of their career. Ordinarily, their first degree (PhD, MD, DMD, DVM, or equivalent) will have been received no more than five years before the fellowship. Since this program is targeted to those who would benefit from postdoctoral research training in preparation for later faculty appointments, applicants may not have faculty appointments.

There are no citizenship requirements for this program. To assure continued excellence and diversity among applicants and awardees, JDRF welcomes proposals from all qualified individuals and encourages proposals from persons with disabilities women and members of minority groups underrepresented in the sciences.

Sponsor
The applicant must be sponsored by an investigator who is affiliated full-time with an accredited institution and who agrees to supervise the applicant’s training. The sponsor does not necessarily need to have a background in diabetes, but the research project must be type 1 diabetes-related.

Location
Fellowship research may be conducted at foreign and domestic, for-profit and nonprofit, and public and private organizations such as universities, colleges, hospitals, laboratories, units of state and local governments, and eligible agencies of the federal government.

Proposal

Access and submit full applications (including research plans) via RMS360.

Research Plan

The research plan should be suitable for a three-year postdoctoral training period. The project should ask a specific and substantive question and be relevant to JDRF’s mission. Extensive discussion between the applicant and the proposed mentor is expected in order to identify an appropriate research project – one that is up-to-date, instructive, and suited to a three-year fellowship period.

The postdoctoral fellowship research plan may not exceed 7 pages, including figures and tables. Please note that the 7-page limit includes narrative items a through f, as described below. Proposals with research plans exceeding the page limit will not be considered.

The research plan must be organized as follows: a) Specific Aims, b) Background and Significance of this work to Type 1 diabetes (provide a brief historical background of your proposed research, including major findings by you and/or others in relevant fields. Explain why you have chosen this problem), c) Preliminary Results (if available), d) Research Designs and Methods (describe, in detail, plans for solving problems, hypothesis, methodology, expected results, experimental subjects, controls, potential pitfalls and the rationale for the chosen approach), e) Other aspects (formal and informal) of the program that will contribute to the total training environment (examples include, but are not limited to, clinical experience with diabetic patients, interaction with senior professional with expertise in diabetes, participation in staff conferences, teaching, consultation, etc.), f) List any planned coursework, g) List pertinent literature references (no page limit).

Note: For a project proposing Human Subject Research, please review the Human Subject Research Guidelines.

At the end of the Research Plan section, the applicant must include a Future Career Plans statement and a Training Plan statement (see below).

Future Career Plan Statement

The Future Career Plan Statement is limited to 2 pages. The applicant must include a statement of career goals and indicate the relevance of these goals to type 1 diabetes-related research. The future career plans statement should detail the applicant’s plan for career development as an independent investigator. Topics to be discussed by the applicant may include: how much of the applicant’s time will be protected for research; how the proposed research will contribute to the applicant’s independent career; an expected timeline for obtaining an independent position, if the applicant is not already at that stage; how the JDRF award will contribute to the applicant’s future career plans; and any other planned formal or informal activities that will aid the applicant in establishing an independent research career. If the research proposed in the proposal is part of a larger research program or trial, the applicant should clearly define his/her role in the project and explain how their efforts on the project will lead to independence.

Training Plan Statement

The Training Plan Statement is limited to 4 pages. The sponsor must provide a biographical sketch, a list of previous trainees, and a statement of the plan for training the applicant. This statement must outline a detailed training program for the applicant as well as confirm the availability of facilities to conduct the research project. The sponsor’s statement should address plans for supervision, guidance, counseling, or other formal or informal training of the applicant. The sponsor must also include accurate and complete information regarding all other sources of grant support (current and pending), including title, abstract, annual and total amount of grant, inclusive funding period, and percent effort.

Recommendation References

Three (3) recommendation references assessing the scientific abilities and potential of the applicant must be submitted. Please note that the recommendation references are confidential and will not be released to the applicant. The recommendation references must be submitted directly through RMS360 by the referee. Please note proposals cannot be successfully validated until all references are submitted. Sponsors cannot be references, but should complete the Training Plan Statement listed above.

Evaluation

Fellowships will be awarded on the basis of the applicant’s previous experience, academic record, the caliber of the proposed research, and the quality of the mentor, training program, and environment. The relevance of the proposal to the cause, cure, treatment, and/or prevention of diabetes and its complications will also be considered. Applicants are encouraged to submit projects aligned with JDRF Research Priority Areas. While not a requirement, a proposal that is aligned with JDRF Priority areas will be given priority consideration in the review process.

The applicant’s professional ability and promise for a research career in type 1 diabetes will hold the highest priority in selection and will be assessed on the basis of the letters of recommendation, career plans, prior clinical and research training, academic transcripts, and the mentor’s endorsement. Location in a department that will provide a stimulating research environment is an additional factor that will be considered in evaluating applicants.

Terms of Award & Stipend

Awards are for three years, assuming satisfactory progress. The fellowship term is 12 months for each fellowship year, and fellows must devote 100% of their effort to the project outlined in the fellowship proposal. Recipients of the JDRF postdoctoral fellowship award cannot hold another postdoctoral fellowship at the same time.

Award amounts are based on years of relevant postdoctoral experience at the time of activation (see Table 2, below). There are no indirect costs allowed for fellowships and JDRF will make no deductions for income tax, Social Security, etc. A research allowance of USD 5,500 is aimed at providing the fellow with funds to enrich their training experience and can be used for travel to scientific meetings (up to USD 2,000/year), journal subscriptions, books, training courses etc. They are not to be used for laboratory supplies or equipment. The purchase of a personal computer is allowed (up to USD 2,000) only during Year 1 of the award. Health insurance costs are permissible. The award is renewable for up to two additional years pending submission and approval of a renewal proposal and progress report. Please see JDRF’s Grants Policies and Procedures for awarded grants for more details about budget guidelines.

Postdoctoral Fellowship Allowances

Years Stipend Research Allowance Total
0 $42,000 $5,500 $47,500
1 $43,680 $5,500 $49,180
2 $45,432 $5,500 $50,932
3 $47,244 $5,500 $52,744
4 $49,128 $5,500 $54,628
5 $51,096 $5,500 $56,596
6 $53,148 $5,500 $58,648
7 $55,272 $5,500 $60,772