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Michigan Postdoctoral Pioneer Program 

University of Michigan Medical School (UMMS)

About the Pioneer Program

In an effort to support innovative and collaborative work within the University of Michigan Medical School (UMMS), the Michigan Postdoctoral Pioneer Program has been established by the Endowment for Basic Sciences (EBS) to provide financial and mentoring support to highly motivated and accomplished post-doctoral fellows. Pioneer fellows will be actively co-mentored by the participating investigators and will be expected to share their time between the participating laboratory settings. Awardees will be appointed for three consecutive years. The EBS will provide 90% of the financial and logistical support for the first two years. Participating mentors will jointly provide 10% of the financial support for years 1 and 2, and 100% of the support for year 3. The stipend is set at 120% of the NIH scale for postdoctoral fellows.

Carole Parent, Ph.D.
Lynne & Raymond W. Ruddon Collegiate Professor of Cancer Biology and Pharmacology
Professor of Cell and Developmental Biology
Affiliate Research Professor, Life Sciences Institute
Michigan Postdoctoral Pioneer Program

Yatrik Shah, PhD.
Professor of Molecular and Integrative Physiology
Professor of Internal Medicine, Division of Gastroenterology
Michigan Postdoctoral Pioneer Program    



Any UMMS-affiliated postdoctoral fellow who has been in rank for 12 months or less at the time of award activation, and is not externally funded, is eligible for this Program. The research project must entail close mentorship and oversight from at least two but not more than three University of Michigan faculty (instructional track). At least one of the participating PIs must hold a primary appointment in a UMMS department. The research project must have strong basic science and discovery components, and aim at resolving an important problem in biology and/or medicine. The participating mentors will be expected to show evidence of adequate funding to support the aggressive pursuit of the project over a three-year period.

Professional Development Activities

Awardees will have an independent mentoring committee to review their progress and discuss future plans every six months. A sum of $10,000 per year will be placed under the control of the award recipient to cover expenses related to attending scientific meetings, training and professional development, and their research endeavors. Program awardees will be expected to present their accomplishments in the context of an annual symposium. Awardees will participate in a rigorous grant writing workshop for transition awards and K-fellowships. Moreover, Awardees will attend professional developmental activities through workshops, where they will learn how to apply and land a faculty job, how to set up an independent laboratory, and develop a short- and long-term plans to be a successful faculty member.

How to Apply

Documents that we need

  • Specific Aims page (one page) 
  • Description of the research project, detailing Background, Significance, Research Plan, and Projected Impact (two pages) 
  • Outline from the applicant describing his/her accomplishments and professional objectives (one page) 
  • Description of the training program provided by the participating mentors, which is expected to include: (i) the potential of the candidate; (ii) a description of the rationale for the project and the logistics of the collaboration, and a commitment of support; (iii) how the collaboration is expected to impact the applicant’s training; and (iv) how the collaboration is expected to lead to joint grant proposals (one page)
  • Biosketches for the applicant and participating PIs (full NIH format)
  • Letter of commitment from the mentors confirming the sources of non-EBS funds. 
  • Applications should follow NIH formatting for R grants
  • Please name file as: lastname_firstname.pdf
  • Submit all documents in a single PDF.
  • Deadline for submission. Get Update News Here!
  •  Decision notification 
  • Appointment start date 

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Phone: +1 734-763-3378