HHMI announced in June that it is increasing support for outstanding postdoctoral researchers through expanded collaborations with four foundations.
Since 2007, HHMI has supported four postdoctoral fellows a year through the Jane Coffin Childs Memorial Fund, the Helen Hay Whitney Foundation, the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation, and the Life Sciences Research Foundation. The new initiative doubles the number of fellows to eight per organization each year.
As is already the case, each group will competitively select candidates—who come from universities across the country—based on its own criteria. The foundations focus on basic biomedicine, general life sciences, and cancer research.
“These organizations consistently select outstanding scientists for their prestigious fellowship programs, and this support comes at a critical moment in the young scientists' careers,” says HHMI President Robert Tjian. “We are pleased to expand our partnership as well as the funding needed to develop and nurture some of the most talented among a new generation of scientists.”
Each fellowship will have a three-year term. Start dates will vary, but most of the new funding will take effect in 2010. When the initiative is at full capacity, HHMI will be supporting 96 postdoctoral fellows through this program at an anticipated annual cost of about $5 million. HHMI separately funds postdoctoral associates at the Janelia Farm Research Campus.
“By expanding its funding for this program, HHMI will enable these organizations to offer 32 additional fellowships each year,” says Jack E. Dixon, HHMI vice president and chief scientific officer.