Early Career Scientist Program

Established in 2009, HHMI’s early career scientist program provided support for 50 of the nation's most promising researchers at a critical stage of their careers. Each Early Career Scientist received a six-year appointment to the Institute, full salary, benefits, and a research budget of $1.5 million. The selected scientists, who were at 33 institutions across the United States, were required to have led their own laboratories for two to six years.

HHMI remains committed to supporting and advancing early career scientists and continues to experiment with the most effective ways to do this. In 2015, the Institute partnered with the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Simons Foundation to launch the Faculty Scholars program, which provides five-year awards to faculty at an early career stage. The Institute also plans to create additional programs to support early career scientists. 

HHMI-NIH Research Scholars (Cloister) Program

The HHMI-NIH Research Scholars Program, also known as the Cloister Program, gave outstanding students at U.S. medical schools the opportunity to receive research training at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland. NIH has continued with a lab and clinical program for research training for medical and dental students that builds on its existing Clinical Research Training Program (CRTP), and HHMI continues to collaborate with NIH to provide unique training elements to the program. Visit the NIH MRSP website for more information.

HHMI remains committed to offering medical, dental, and veterinary students the opportunity to consider careers in biomedical research. The HHMI Medical Research Fellows Program supports students engaged in year-long research training experiences at their home institutions or at laboratories around the country.

Physician-Scientist Early Career Program

The Physician-Scientist Early Career Program provided early career support to exceptional physician-scientists. This program helped launch the academic careers of 63 promising scientists, all alumni of the HHMI-NIH Research Scholars and HHMI Research Training Fellowships programs. Each awardee received up to $375,000 over a five year period, and many have used this support to help them compete successfully for NIH RO1 grants.

Precollege Outreach Initiative for Biomedical Research Institutions 

Grants through this initiative supported pre-K to 12th-grade science education. Funding provided to medical schools, dental schools, veterinary schools, public health schools, hospitals, academic health centers, and independent research institutions enabled these organizations to work with school systems, museums, and other partners skilled in delivering science content to students.

Predoctoral Fellowships in Biological Sciences

The Predoctoral Fellowships in Biological Sciences promoted excellence in biomedical research by helping prospective researchers with exceptional promise obtain a high-quality graduate education. The program began in 1988 and provided five years of financial support for over 1,200 students pursuing a PhD. The alumni of this program have followed a variety of paths to their success: academia, industry, science writing and science policy, and other parts of the nonprofit sector. Several HHMI investigators and Janelia group leaders are former fellows of this program.

Postdoctoral Research Fellowships for Physicians

The Postdoctoral Research Fellowships for Physicians program was initiated in 1990 and has provided support for more than 400 physicians to pursue advanced research training and facilitate their transition into research careers. The three-year fellowships provided training, under the guidance of mentors, in research directed toward an understanding of basic biological processes or disease mechanisms. After completing the fellowship, most fellows proceeded to independent faculty or research appointments and were able to prepare highly competitive research proposals.

HHMI-NIBIB Interfaces Initiative

In 2005, HHMI and the National Institute of Biomedical Imaging and Bioengineering (NIBIB) formed a partnership to support the development of new training opportunities in emerging interdisciplinary research environments. The goal of the program was to help biomedical research institutions develop a cadre of PhD scientists who trained to conduct interdisciplinary research at the intersections of the biomedical, physical, computational, and mathematical disciplines. The initiative consisted of two phases. HHMI funded Phase I, which supported the establishment of new interdisciplinary training programs at research institutions. Phase II, funded by NIBIB, sustained the training programs through their critical early years

Med into Grad Initiative

In 2005, HHMI launched the Med into Grad (MIG) Initiative to address the growing gap between basic biology and medicine. The Institute recognized that biomedical scientists could benefit from additional training to help them translate biological knowledge into effective medical treatments and diagnostics. MIG training included the fundamentals of pathobiology, an introduction to how medicine is practiced, and a survey of the problems and challenges faced by medical practitioners. HHMI  held two MIG Initiative competitions, awarding $26 million in grants to 25 graduate institutions. This funding enabled them to initiate or enhance existing programs designed to help students obtain the skills necessary to partner with clinician-scientists in the application of emerging biological knowledge to medical practice. These programs train students to recognize and capitalize on translational opportunities that may arise from their research and, in some cases, may influence the direction of their future investigations.