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School of Medicine Dean's Postdoctoral Fellowship

Important Dates

Application Deadline: 
Wednesday, April 8, 2020

Application Materials

Funding Periods: 12 months: January 1 to December 31 and July 1 to June 30

Funding Level: Stipend is $31,350 for the entire award period. 

Notification of Awards: Late December/June.

The School of Medicine Dean’s Postdoctoral Fellowships encourage and support young investigators in the first two years of their postdoctoral research training at the School of Medicine and who are under the mentorship of faculty in the School of Medicine. With the goal to support current postdocs and to facilitate the recruitment of new scholars, the Dean's Fellowship is often used as seed money while outside funds are sought. 

Applicants ensure that both they and their faculty sponsor meet all eligibility criteria. Applications from postdoctoral scholars and/or faculty sponsors who do not meet the guidelines will not be reviewed by the committee.  

List of Fellows: July 2019 start

List of Fellows: January 2020 start

List of Fellows: July 2020 start


Eligibility requirements: 
  1. Applicants must be postdoctoral scholars at the School of Medicine at the time the award begins. If applicant is not a postdoc at the application deadline, additional documents must be submitted with application (see below).   
  2. Faculty sponsors must be appointed in the School of Medicine. Acting, consulting, and courtesy appointees are ineligible.
  3. Awardees cannot be enrolled in a degree-granting program while funded.
  4. Applicants in the first one or two years of postdoctoral research training are preferred.
  5. Foreign fellows must have visas that allow stipend support (typically a J-1 & F-1 OPT). H1-B and TN visa holders are ineligible. Citizenship is not a selection factor.
  6. This is a one-year fellowship and applications for a second year of funding will not be reviewed.

Additional Application Guidelines: 

  1. Faculty may not have more than one funded Dean's fellow at a time, except for Assistant Professors who may have two funded scholars simultaneously.
  2. Faculty (including Assistant Professors) may not serve as mentor/sponsor on more than one fellowship application per cycle.  
  3. Funding is restricted investigative activities. Awardees must spend at least 80% of their time in research. If effort is reduced to less than 80% research while receiving funding, an exception must be requested and approved in advance.
  4. Funding is limited to stipend support paid directly to the postdoc. The award may not be used to support research expenses or towards travel or tuition expenses.  
  5. If research involves animal and/or human subjects/protocols, applicants should apply for required protocols at the time of submission and not wait to be funded. The award cannot be activated without approved protocols. Protocols need to list the School of Medicine Dean's Fellowship as a possible funding source.
  6. Re-applications from previously rejected applicants are accepted.  


Application Process: 

Complete applications must be submitted online by the deadline. Start applications early to allow enough time for the system to solicit the required form from your faculty mentor which is due at the same time as your application.  Applications due by 11:59 PM PST on deadline date.

A complete application consists of:

  • Complete online application form
  • NIH Biosketch
  • Research proposal: Two page limit, including graphics/tables. Proposals are written by the fellow and reviewed by the faculty sponsor. Proposals must include a brief statement of proposed investigation including background, goals, hypothesis, and experimental methods. Use 1-inch margins and 12-point font. Include title of project on both numbered pages. Include references only if they are part of your two-page proposal.
  • Faculty Sponsor's Recommendation Form & Agreement
  • Offer Letter: only if not currently appointed as a postdoctoral scholar in the School of Medicine

This application does not go through RMG or OSR at Stanford.

Selection Process: 

The committee consists of SoM faculty of diverse interests and basic/translational focus. Priority scores are assigned based on:

  1. Scientific merit of the proposal and its training relevance. Proposals are written by the fellow and reviewed by the faculty sponsor. Priority given to proposals of outstanding scientific merit that provide a novel and complementary training environment for the trainee. 
  2. Scientific Potential of the Trainee. Priority given to trainees with the potential for independent and innovative biomedical research.
  3. Stage of Training. Priority given to those trainees in the early phase of their postdoctoral training. The stage of funding is number of years as a postdoctoral fellow since last doctoral degree. Clinical residency years are not relevant research years. If considerable time has elapsed since doctoral degree, and that time was not spent engaged in research or clinical residency, the applicant is expected to describe in the application how the time was spent.
  4. Program Participation Requirement. Faculty Sponsor must have fulfilled participation requirements for their previous Dean's Fellowship recipient(s).

Additional Information


For questions, email


1. What happens if I win another fellowship? 
You can make up to 125% of the postdoc minimum compensation with the Dean's award. If you go over, the Dean's award can be reduced so that you are making 125% of the minimum. 

2. I understand that my research proposal is limited to two pages, but can I put references on a third page? 
No. If you include references, they need to appear in the two pages you are allowed for your proposal. 

3. Do I send letters of reference or recommendation forms directly to OPA? 
No. As you complete the application, there will be a place to enter your PI's contact information. They will get an email with instrutions on submission.

4. Can I use the award for ISC? 

5. Can funds be carried over beyond 12 months? 

Program Requirements: 



  1. Enroll in the Grant Writing Academy’s Specific Aims lecture and workshop or Proposal Bootcamp (BIOS242),
  2. Submit a brief annual report at the end of the fellowship, and
  3. Attend and be prepared to present/discuss research at Dean's Fellowship lunch(es).

Faculty Sponsors*

  1. Participate in the Grant Writing Academy’s Faculty Review Workshops (4-hour commitment),
  2. Attend Dean's Fellowship lunch(es), and
  3. Provide mentorship to the awardees at Dean’s Fellowship events.

*Failure to meet these requirements may cause the faculty sponsor to be ineligible to support postdoc applications in future application cycles of the Dean’s Postdoctoral Fellowship.