Office of the Vice Provost for Research

Postdoctoral Fellowships for Academic Diversity

The Postdoctoral Fellowship for Academic Diversity Program is a competitive program whose goal is to increase the diversity of the community of scholars devoted to academic research at both the University of Pennsylvania and The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP).  Both organizations seek to attract promising researchers and educators from different backgrounds, races, ethnic groups, and other diverse populations whose life experience, research experience and employment background will contribute significantly to their academic missions. Fellowships are available for postdoctoral training in all areas of study at either Penn or CHOP. Successful candidates will receive mentored scholarly and research training as well as courses and workshops to enhance their research success skills and prepare them for a faculty position in a major university.

For additional information on the CHOP diversity fellowship program click here.
Meet our current PostDoc Fellows here.

Applications are closed. Please check back in Spring 2018 for more information about the next application cycle.

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  • Graduate students from Penn and other institutions who have completed, or will complete their requirements for Ph.D. by the Fellowship start date
  • Postdoctoral scholars from other institutions who have completed their dissertation within the last three years
  • Professional applicants (M.D., D.M.D., V.M.D., J.D., etc.) within a year of completing their post-degree professional training
  • Candidates must be US citizens or permanent residents
  • Postdocs, residents and fellows who currently have a position at Penn or CHOP are ineligible for this program
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Fellows receive a stipend of $50,000 a year in year 1 with $2,000 increments in years 2 and 3, as well as annual allowances for travel ($2,000) and research ($5,000), and a one-time relocation expense of up to $5,000. The University and CHOP also provide a medical, vision, dental and life insurance benefits package.

Successful candidate will receive highly mentored scholarly and research training as well as courses and workshops to enhance their research skills and prepare them for faculty positions in a major university.

Start dates will be arranged in consultation with the faculty mentor to begin as early as July 2018.



Penn - Consistent with the University’s postdoc policy, appointments are for one year. Renewals to the second and third year of the program are made annually and will be renewed based on satisfactory performance. Mentors will be required to provide an annual report on the postdocs progress.

CHOP - Initial appointments to this postdoctoral fellowship are for 1 year. Extension to the second and third years of the program are contingent on completion of the CHOP Postdoctoral Fellow Annual Review Form and mutual agreement between the fellow and primary mentor.

Program Funding:

The Penn and CHOP programs are independently funded and have separate review processes. Sources of funding for the Penn fellowship include the Office of the Vice Provost for Research and vary depending upon the individual Schools. For details about program funding please contact the Office of the Vice Provost for Research. The CHOP fellowship is funded by the Research Institute and the Primary Faculty Mentor.

Faculty who are interested in being mentors may contact the Office of the Vice Provost for Research for further information on the Penn fellowship or the CHOP Office of Postdoctoral Affairs for further information on the CHOP fellowship. Mentors are required to submit an annual report describing the postdocs accomplishments.

Application Procedure:

Required application materials include:

  1. A completed fellowship application form
  2. A curriculum vitae including current and pending publications
  3. A personal statement, no longer than three pages, single-spaced, and one inch margins, which must address all of the following in the order below.
    • Reviews your previous research accomplishments
    • Outlines your future research goals and proposed research
    • Describes your commitment to pursuing an academic career
    • Includes academic, employment or other life experiences that would bring new perspectives to the University community and your chosen field
  4. Note: each page should be numbered and have the applicant’s name in the header.
  5. Three letters of reference from people acquainted with the applicant’s work. One reference letter should be from the applicant's thesis advisor or faculty mentor. All reference letters must be uploaded to the following website:
  6. Applicants are encouraged to submit a letter from a Penn or CHOP faculty member having similar research interests confirming that he/she is willing to serve as the applicant’s primary mentor during the fellowship period. Mentor letters must be uploaded to the following website:
  7. Incomplete applications will not be considered.

If you have any questions about the Penn program please contact Josie Rook, Executive Director, Office of the Vice Provost for Research . 

If you have any questions about the CHOP program please contact Paulette McRae, PhD, Academic Programs Officer, The Children's Hospital of Philadelphia Research Institute.

Diversity Fellowship FAQs


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Upload Letters of Reference » Upload Mentor Letter »



Revised: October 2017

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