Gilliam Fellowships for Advanced Study

The program provides awards to pairs of dissertation advisers and their graduate students based on what HHMI values and considers essential components of the environment, particularly the institution and adviser’s commitment to creating a healthy academic ecosystem and the student’s potential for scientific leadership.

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45 Gilliam Fellowships Awarded

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2019 Gilliam Awardees
2019 Gilliam Awardees

The goals of the Gilliam program are to ensure that students from groups historically excluded from and underrepresented in science are prepared to assume leadership roles in science and science education, and to foster the development of a healthier, more inclusive academic scientific ecosystem by partnering with faculty and institutions committed to advancing diversity and inclusion in the sciences.

Gilliam Advisers

Gilliam Advisers play a key role as change-makers who can foster the development of a more inclusive academic scientific environment. To facilitate this role, all Advisers participate in a year-long, culturally responsive mentoring skills development training, which is a hallmark of the Gilliam program.

Advisers are empowered to disseminate lessons learned to their lab, department, and institution to make an exponentially greater impact on creating a healthy academic scientific ecosystem. Additionally, Advisers receive a modest award to address challenges to diversity and inclusion at the graduate level.

Through their development of Diversity and Inclusion projects, Advisers are able to leverage their influence and implement activities that will remove undue burden from populations historically excluded and underrepresented in science.

Read About Advisers’ Projects »

“I used the knowledge gained from the Gilliam mentor training to develop workshops for faculty in my department on how to create and maintain an inclusive and diverse work environment. Faculty that participated see a visible change in the confidence of their underrepresented mentees.”

Gilliam Fellows

Becoming part of a diverse, supportive, strong community where Fellows can focus on their science is a highlight of the Gilliam Fellows’ experience in the program.

Fellows’ attendance at the Gilliam Annual Meeting and participation in HHMI leadership training gives them the tools to use their strengths and experiences to the benefit of science, to influence the environment, maximize their collaborations and elevate their voices as scientific leaders.

Gilliam-specific sessions at the HHMI Science Meetings further enable them to engage with their peers, increase their scientific knowledge, and gain important insight and advice from leading HHMI scientists.

“The Gilliam community constantly inspires me. It has given me a group of peers to whom I can relate, who are passionate about scientific discovery, pursuing careers in academia, and making science a more inclusive space for people of all backgrounds. The support of my Gilliam family has been invaluable throughout graduate school, and I know these relationships will remain throughout my entire career.”

About James H. Gilliam, Jr.

The Gilliam Fellowships for Advanced Study were created in 2004 in honor of the late James H. Gilliam, Jr., a charter Trustee of HHMI and chair of its Audit and Compensation Committee. Mr. Gilliam was a respected business and civic leader who spent his life nurturing excellence and diversity in science and education.

Gilliam Fellows group photo in 2019
2017 Gilliam Advisers
  • Fellows are supported for up to three years of dissertation research, typically in years three, four, and five of PhD study.
  • For the 2021-22 fellowship year the award amount is $50,000 per year. This includes an annual fellow stipend of $33,000, an institution allowance (in lieu of tuition and fees) of $10,000, a fellow’s discretionary allowance of $4,000, and an adviser allowance of $3,000 to support diversity and inclusion efforts at the graduate level.

Advisers' Benefits

  • Engage in thirty-hour, year-long culturally responsive mentor skills development through interactive online modules and in-person meetings
  • Build a community of advisers and share knowledge and experiences
  • Learn best practices in improving communication, managing expectations, and developing equitable and inclusive mentoring relationships from nationally recognized facilitators
  • Develop an implementation plan to disseminate mentor training with feedback from facilitators
  • Receive support to address challenges to diversity and inclusion at the graduate level

Read About Advisers’ Projects »

“I chose to focus my initial dissemination efforts from the Gilliam Adviser training on teaching the faculty in my department about culturally aware and inclusive practices. Faculty learn specific actions they can take to improve mentoring and create a more inclusive culture in science. Most importantly, they appear to be discussing cultural awareness regularly and taking individual actions to effect positive changes in our graduate training environments.”

Fellows' Benefits

  • Become part of a vibrant, supportive community of Gilliam Fellows
  • Enhance leadership and professional development skills in annual training
  • Present research and network with other trainees and scientists at the Gilliam annual meeting and at HHMI science meetings
  • Gain career advice and insight from HHMI investigators at Gilliam-specific discussion sessions
  • Receive support to participate in discipline-specific meetings, advanced courses, and other professional development events and activities
“The Gilliam Fellows’ discussion with HHMI Investigator Dr. Samara Reck-Peterson was very worthwhile. I will utilize her advice in collaborating with lab members, being truly invested in their research, and effectively communicating my most valuable attributes when applying to postdoc positions. She was very open to sharing her own hardships and showed her humility and honesty in that teamwork is a key contributor to academic breakthroughs.”

HHMI’s Gilliam Fellowships for Advanced Study are open to eligible pairs comprising thesis advisers and PhD students (“adviser-student pairs”). Application for the Gilliam Fellowships for Advanced Study is by invitation only.

  • Adviser-student pairs from eligible disciplines must be nominated by the HHMI-designated institutional representative.
  • Prospective fellows must be i) U.S. citizens, U.S. permanent residents, undocumented childhood arrivals, or undocumented individuals who have been granted temporary permission to stay in the US (DACA), and ii) be from populations excluded from science, or alumni of the HHMI EXROP and iii) be at the appropriate stage of their PhD training.

Notifications will be sent to the designated institutional representative by HHMI in August, and the deadline for nominations for the competition is mid-September. (See Application tab)

The adviser-student pairs must be studying scientific problems in biomedical sciences, life sciences, or biological questions in related disciplines. This initiative does not support social science research.

Nominations must be made for students typically in their second or third year of a PhD program who have or will advance to candidacy by September 1, 2021.

Students who are enrolled in an MD/PhD or other dual-degree program are not eligible.

Note: Application for the Gilliam Fellowships for Advanced Study is by invitation only.

HHMI’s Gilliam Fellowships for Advanced Study are awarded on the basis of

  1. The commitment and demonstrated ability of the institution and the thesis adviser to develop outstanding scientists especially those from populations historically excluded from and underrepresented in science;
  2. The commitment of the institution and the thesis adviser to fostering a healthier, more inclusive academic scientific ecosystem; and
  3. The student’s promise as a scientific investigator, and potential for leadership in the scientific community, including as college and university faculty;
  4. An evaluation of all submitted materials, including the nomination, adviser, student, third-party reference. All these materials will be critical elements in the evaluation of the application.

Components of the application

Nomination (from the institutional representative)

  • Due: September 14, 2020

Eligibility Confirmation (to be completed by the thesis adviser)

  • Due: September 30, 2020

Application (institutional representative, thesis adviser, student)

  • Opens: October 27, 2020
  • Closes: December 10, 2020

External Letter of Support (from student’s previous research adviser)

  • Opens: October 27, 2020
  • Closes: December 10, 2020

Characteristics of successful applications for the 2020 competition can be accessed here.  Please note that the application prompts are subject to change for each new competition.  If you are submitting materials for the 2021 competition, please review the 2021 Gilliam Program announcement; see below. 

For more information about the nomination and application components, please refer to the 2021 Gilliam Program Announcement (PDF)

Current Advisers and Fellows

Thesis Adviser Institution Fellow Cohort Year
Leslie Vosshall The Rockefeller University Veronica Jove 2016
David Baker University of Washington-Seattle Campus Sherry Bermeo 2017
James Collins University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Carlos Paz 2017
Catherine Drennan Massachusetts Institute of Technology Lindsey Backman 2017
Susan Golden University of California-San Diego Marie Adomako 2017
Jean Greenberg The University of Chicago DeQuantarius Speed 2017
Stephan Lammel University of California-Berkeley Christine Liu 2017
James Olson University of Washington-Seattle Campus Eric Nealy 2017
Daniel Segre Boston University Alan Pacheco 2017
Jonathan Abraham Harvard Medical School Lars Clark 2018
Cristina Alberini New York University Luendreo Barbosa 2018
Jason Aoto University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine Susana Restrepo 2018
Kyriacos Athanasiou University of California-Irvine Erik Gonzalez-Leon 2018
Rudy Behnia Columbia University in the City of New York Jessica Kohn 2018
John Boothroyd Stanford University Abel Ferrel 2018
Elizabeth Brainerd Brown University Jeremy Lomax 2018
Jeanette Cook University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine Juanita Limas 2018
Craig Crews Yale University Shanique Alabi 2018
Russell DeBose-Boyd University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Brittany Johnson 2018
Robert Froemke New York University School of Medicine Naomi Caraballo (Lopez-Caraballo) 2018
Margaret Gardel The University of Chicago Kate Cavanaugh 2018
Richard Gardner University of Washington Medical Center Amanda Bradley 2018
Margaret Goodell Baylor College of Medicine Jaime Reyes 2018
Lisa Goodrich Harvard University Isle Bastille 2018
Ann Griffith University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio Sergio Cepeda 2018
Elissa Hallem University of California-Los Angeles, David Geffen School of Medicine Taylor Brown 2018
Lindsay Hinck University of California-Santa Cruz Stefany Rubio 2018
Erich Jarvis The Rockefeller University Cesar Vargas 2018
Angela Jefferson Vanderbilt University Medical Center Francis Cambronero 2018
Rachelle Johnson Vanderbilt University Medical Center Tolu Omokehinde 2018
Tracy Johnson University of California-Los Angeles Lauren Thurlow 2018
Elizabeth King University of Missouri-Columbia Patricka Williams-Simon 2018
Andrew Kowalczyk Emory University School of Medicine Amber Caldara 2018
Markita Landry University of California-Berkeley Abraham Beyene 2018
Tene Lewis Emory University School of Public Health Miriam Van Dyke 2018
David Linden The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Jessie Benedict 2018
Ben Major Washington University in St. Louis Megan Agajanian 2018
Ulrich Mueller The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Jose Llongueras 2018
Carole Ober The University of Chicago Charles Washington 2018
Paivi Pajukanta University of California-Los Angeles Marcus Alvarez 2018
Carrie Partch University of California-Santa Cruz Gian Carlo Parico 2018
Blake Peterson The Ohio State University Angelo Andres 2018
Robin Queen Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University Cherice Hughes-Oliver 2018
Michelle Lynne Reniere University of Washington Monica Cesinger 2018
Kaoru Saijo University of California-Berkeley Kurtresha Worden 2018
Daniel Schmidt University of Minnesota-Twin Cities Willow Coyote-Maestas 2018
Jason Shoemaker University of Pittsburgh Emily Ackerman 2018
Christina Smolke Stanford University Matias Kaplan 2018
Melissa Spencer University of California-Los Angeles, David Geffen School of Medicine Raquel Aragon 2018
Jonathan Staley The University of Chicago Cody Hernandez 2018
JoAnn Trejo University of California-San Diego Medical Center Aleena Arakaki 2018
Danny Winder Vanderbilt University School of Medicine Jordan Brown 2018
Cynthia Wolberger The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Sara Haile 2018
Todd Yeates University of California-Los Angeles Jessica Ochoa 2018
Carlos Aizenman Brown University Alexis Toliver 2019
Regina Baucom University of Michigan Nia Johnson 2019
Alistair Boettiger Stanford University Leslie Mateo 2019
Susan Carpenter University of California-Santa Cruz Apple Vollmers 2019
Peter Chien University of Massachusetts, Amherst Samar Mahmoud 2019
Seemay Chou University of California-San Francisco, School of Medicine Fauna Yarza 2019
Daniel Colon-Ramos University of Puerto Rico-Rio Piedras Ernesto Cabezas-Bou 2019
Susan Daniel Cornell University Ferra Pinnock 2019
Ian Davis University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Shelsa Marcel 2019
Marcelo Dietrich Yale University Gabriela Bosque-Ortiz 2019
Chris Dulla Tufts University School of Medicine Sadi Quinones 2019
Kafui Dzirasa Duke University Elise Adamson 2019
Ruth Anne Eatock The University of Chicago Selina Baeza-Loya 2019
Camilla Forsberg University of California-Santa Cruz Donna Poscablo 2019
Michael Francis University of Massachusetts Medical School Kellianne Alexander 2019
James Fraser University of California-San Francisco Roberto Efraín Díaz 2019
Rachelle Gaudet Harvard University José Velilla 2019
Jason Gestwicki University of California-San Francisco Kelly Montgomery 2019
J. Silvio Gutkind University of California-San Diego School of Medicine Michael Allevato 2019
Corey Harwell Harvard University Christopher Reid 2019
Mark Heise University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine Brea Hampton 2019
Luisa Iruela-Arispe University of California-Los Angeles Gloria Hernandez 2019
John Jewett University of Arizona Natasha Cornejo 2019
Alec Kimmelman New York University School of Medicine Joel Encarnacion-Rosado 2019
Katherine King Baylor College of Medicine Daniel Morales-Mantilla 2019
Erez Lieberman Aiden Baylor College of Medicine Brian Glenn-St.Hilaire 2019
Scott Magness University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Kristina Rivera 2019
Rachel Martin University of California-Irvine Marc Sprague-Piercy 2019
Alea Mills Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory David Johnson 2019
Peter Mucha University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine Andrew Hinton 2019
Jennifer Nemhauser University of Washington-Seattle Campus Román Ramos-Báez 2019
Medha Pathak University of California, Irvine, School of Medicine Jesse Holt 2019
Scott Pletcher University of Michigan Kristina Holme 2019
April Pyle University of California-Los Angeles Devin Gibbs 2019
Priya Rajasethupathy The Rockefeller University Josue Regalado 2019
Samara Reck-Peterson University of California-San Diego Donte Stevens 2019
Antonis Rokas Vanderbilt University Jacob Steenwyk 2019
Sunny Shin University of Pennsylvania Perleman School of Medicine Natasha Lopes-Fischer 2019
Michelle Southard-Smith Vanderbilt University Justin Avila 2019
Jorge Torres University of California-Los Angeles Erick Velasquez 2019
Laurence Trussell Oregon Health and Science University Tavita Garrett 2019
Robert Weiss Cornell University Irma Fernandez 2019
Danny Winder Vanderbilt University Kellie Williford 2019
Kim Woodrow University of Washington-Seattle Campus Jamie Hernandez 2019
Nicola Allen Salk Institute for Biological Studies/University of California-San Diego Jillybeth Burgado 2020
Graça Almeida-Porada Wake Forest School of Medicine of Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center Martin Rodriguez 2020
James Alvarez Duke University Nina Marie Garcia 2020
Mark Andermann Harvard University Nghia Nguyen 2020
K. Mark Ansel University of California-San Francisco Priscila Muñoz-Sandoval 2020
Swathi Arur University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center/Baylor College of Medicine Jacob Ortega 2020
Luis Barreiro University of Chicago Katherine Aracena 2020
Douda Bensasson University of Georgia Jacqueline Peña 2020
Kivanc Birsoy Rockefeller University Mariluz Soula 2020
Kathleen Caron University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine Hernán Méndez 2020
Yolanda Chen University of Vermont Erika Bueno 2020
Catherine Drennan Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sheena Vasquez 2020
Siobain Duffy Rutgers University, Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences Alvin Crespo-Bellido 2020
Monica Dus University of Michigan Thibaut Pardo Garcia 2020
Vivian Gama Vanderbilt University Gabriella Robertson 2020
Sharon Gerecht The Johns Hopkins University Franklyn Hall 2020
Rachel Green The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Miguel Pacheco 2020
Diana Hargreaves Salk Institute for Biological Studies/University of California-San Diego Matthew Maxwell 2020
Ritchie Ho Cedars-Sinai Medical Center Thomas Mota 2020
Joanna Jankowsky Baylor College of Medicine Gabriella Perez 2020
Thomas Kash University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Medicine Sofia Neira 2020
Alexis Komor University of California-San Diego Carlos Vasquez 2020
Lisa Komoroske University of Massachusetts, Amherst Nadia Fernandez 2020
Genevieve Konopka University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center Ana Ortiz 2020
Konrad Kording University of Pennsylvania Ilenna Jones 2020
Kelly Liu Cornell University Marissa Baccas 2020
Robert Malenka Stanford University School of Medicine Daniel Cardozo Pinto 2020
Ricardo Mallarino Princeton University Jorge Moreno 2020
Seth Margolis The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine Michael Hopkins 2020
Wallace Marshall University of California-San Francisco Ulises Diaz 2020
Andreas Martin University of California-Berkeley Santiago Yori Restrepo 2020
Robert Mauck Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania Ryan Daniels 2020
Douglas Melton Harvard University Alana Van Dervort 2020
Timothy Mitchison Harvard Medical School Lillian Horin 2020
Shruti Naik New York University School of Medicine Kody Mansfield 2020
Lauren O'Connell Stanford University Aurora Alvarez-Buylla 2020
Kathrin Plath University of California-Los Angeles Clara Cano 2020
Manoj Puthenveedu University of Michigan Medical School Candilianne Serrano-Zayas 2020
John Rawls Duke University School of Medicine Briana Davis 2020
Jennifer Robinson University of Kansas Pamela Johnson 2020
Amita Sehgal Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania Jessica Schwarz 2020
Aakanksha Singhvi Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center/University of Washington-Seattletle Campus German Rojas 2020
Gina Turrigiano Brandeis University Andrea Guerrero 2020
Noah Whiteman University of California-Berkeley Jessica Aguilar 2020
Karen Zito University of California-Davis Nicole Claiborne 2020

Program Alumni


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