Selection Process

The Fellows program provides talented scientists a rare opportunity: the chance to set up research programs of their own as an alternative to traditional post-doctoral positions. Recent Ph.D. and M.D. graduates with proven excellence in research are given the necessary resources to work as principal investigators, free from financial constraints and distraction by formal teaching responsibilities. As their research program matures, Fellows are able to attract funding from federal grants or other sources.

The Fellows program is an integral part of Whitehead Institute’s mission and emerged from the notion that nurturing scientists during their most creative years will yield a new generation of leaders more rapidly than traditional programs. Fellows sometimes have training outside the traditional areas of biological research, which fosters interdisciplinary and innovative research. Fellows take advantage of the Institute’s state-of-the-art research facilities, as well as the collegial and supportive environment of Whitehead Institute and the neighboring Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Candidates cannot apply to become Whitehead Fellows; rather, they are nominated by leaders in the research community. This nomination takes the form of a letter from the candidate’s research advisor or other distinguished scientist from the applicant’s field or institution. Two additional letters of support by persons familiar with the candidate’s research and academic accomplishments also should be forwarded to:

Whitehead Fellows Program
Office of the Director
Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research
455 Main Street
Cambridge, MA 02142

Positions open on a revolving basis; there is no application or admission deadline. Nominations of truly exceptional individuals are always welcome.

The Institute is especially committed to consideration of candidates from historically underrepresented talent pools, including women and minority candidates.

Questions about the program should be directed to fellowsprogram@wi.mit.edu.

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