Programs to Enhance Workforce Diversity
The NIMH offers several funding opportunities and supplement programs to enhance the diversity of the workforce by providing support to students, postdoctorates, and eligible investigators from underrepresented groups in health-related research. Candidates include individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, and individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds. Further general information may be found in two NIH Guide Notices, Racial and Ethnic Categories and Definitions for NIH Diversity Programs and for Other Reporting Purposes and Notice of NIH's Interest in Diversity . Individuals are encouraged to contact a Program Officer to discuss the relevance of the proposed research to the Institute’s research priorities and for guidance on the proposed research and training plans.
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Individuals are encouraged to contact a Program Officer to discuss the relevance of the proposed research to the Institute’s research priorities and for guidance on the proposed research and training plans. In addition, applicants should discuss which funding opportunity (F31 vs R36) will best match their level of training and stage of dissertation.
Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Predoctoral Fellowship to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Parent F31 - Diversity)
Individuals submitting applications for the Diversity F31 predoctoral fellowship are eligible to submit applications at any point during their graduate training. However, the most competitive F31-Diversity applicants will include a research strategy (preferably hypothesis-driven) and research training that is well-suited for his/her stage of career development.
Mental Health Dissertation Research Grant to Increase Diversity (R36)
Funding opportunity information: Mental Health Research Dissertation Grant to Enhance Workforce Diversity (R36 Independent Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
The R36 Mental Health Dissertation Grants are designed to facilitate the completion of the doctoral research project. Dissertation applicants for the R36 should not require further training at this stage.
NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Advancement in Neuroscience (D-SPAN) Award (F99/K00)
Funding opportunity information: NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Advancement in Neuroscience (D-SPAN) Award (F99/K00)
The purpose of the NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Advancement in Neuroscience (D-SPAN) Award is to support a defined pathway across career stages for outstanding graduate students who are from diverse backgrounds underrepresented in neuroscience research. This two-phase award will facilitate completion of the doctoral dissertation and transition of talented graduate students to strong neuroscience research postdoctoral positions, and will provide career development opportunities relevant to their long-term career goal of becoming independent neuroscience researchers. For the F99/K00 award, individuals may receive up to 6 years combined support for both phases, which includes up to 2 years in the F99 fellowship phase and up to 4 years in the K00 career development phase.
For more information about this program please visit the NIH Blueprint and BRAIN Initiative D-SPAN Award website.
Maximizing Opportunities for Scientific and Academic Independent Careers (MOSAIC) Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity (K99/R00)
Funding opportunity information: MOSAIC Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity (K99/R00)
The purpose of the MOSAIC Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity (K99/R00) program is to support a cohort of early career, independent investigators from diverse backgrounds conducting research in NIH mission areas. The long-term goal of this program is to enhance diversity in the biomedical research workforce. The MOSAIC K99/R00 program is designed to facilitate a timely transition of promising postdoctoral researchers from diverse backgrounds (e.g., see NIH’s Interest in Diversity ) from their mentored, postdoctoral research positions to independent, tenure-track or equivalent faculty positions at research-intensive institutions. The MOSAIC K99/R00 program will provide independent NIH research support before and after this transition to help awardees launch successful, independent research careers. Additionally, MOSAIC K99/R00 scholars will be part of organized scientific cohorts and will be expected to participate in mentoring, networking, and professional development activities coordinated by MOSAIC Institutionally-Focused Research Education Award to Promote Diversity (UE5 ) grantees (see NOT-GM-21-051 for information about areas of program need).
BRAIN Initiative Advanced Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity (K99/R00)
Funding opportunity information: BRAIN Initiative Advanced Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity (K99/R00)
The purpose of the BRAIN Initiative Advanced Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity is to enhance biomedical research workforce diversity and foster a strong cohort of new, highly skilled and well trained, NIH-supported, independent investigators from diverse backgrounds working in research areas supported by the BRAIN Initiative, as highlighted in BRAIN 2025: A Scientific Vision.
Those interested in applying for this award may send scientific or career development questions to BRAINDIVERSITYK99R00@nih.gov
Institutional/Organization Funding Opportunities
MOSAIC Institutionally-Focused Research Education Award to Promote Diversity (UE5)
The program provides support for well-designed courses for skills development and mentoring activities to prepare cohorts of postdoctoral and early-career faculty scholars supported by MOSAIC K99/R00 awards to transition into, succeed, and advance in independent, tenure-track or equivalent, research-intensive faculty careers.
Awardee organizations must provide career development and mentoring activities aligned with and appropriate for the disciplinary backgrounds of scholars supported through the MOSAIC K99/R00 program. Areas of programmatic need will be indicated through Notices of Special Interest (NOSIs) released annually by NIH (see NOT-GM-21-051 ). For more information about the MOSAIC UE5 and K99/R00 Programs, please visit the NIGMS MOSAIC program website.
NIH Neuroscience Development for Advancing the Careers of a Diverse Research Workforce (R25)
Funding opportunity information: NIH Neuroscience Development for Advancing the Careers of a Diverse Research Workforce (R25 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
This NIH Neuroscience Development for Advancing the Careers of a Diverse Research Workforce (R25) is a flexible and specialized program designed to foster the development of neuroscience researchers from diverse backgrounds, including from underrepresented groups across career stages. The overarching goal of this R25 program is to support educational activities that encourage individuals from diverse backgrounds, including those from groups underrepresented in the biomedical and behavioral sciences, to pursue further studies or careers in research.
It encourages applications from applicant organizations that propose innovative mentoring and professional development activities in the mission area(s) of NIMH. This Neuroscience Diversity R25 initiative will focus on factors that have been shown to affect retention of underrepresented graduate students, postdoctoral trainees, and junior faculty in neuroscience research such as mentoring, scientific networks, professional development, and attention to the structural and institutional environment regarding inclusion (Structure and Belonging: Pathways to Success for Underrepresented Minority and Women Ph.D. Students in STEM Fields ; The Science of Effective Mentorship in STEMM ).
NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research – ENDURE Undergraduate Program
The Blueprint initiative "Enhancing Neuroscience Diversity through Undergraduate Research Education Experiences (ENDURE)" aims to raise interest and opportunities in neuroscience research for individuals who are typically underrepresented in the field.
The goal is to provide such individuals with training at the undergraduate level, so that they are prepared to enter and successfully complete neuroscience Ph.D. programs. ENDURE will provide this undergraduate training through partnerships between research-intensive institutions and institutions with a substantial enrollment of neuroscience majors from diverse groups. This includes individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups; individuals with disabilities; and individuals from economically disadvantaged backgrounds.
ENDURE undergraduate training programs will support a range of activities to increase student interest and involvement in the neurosciences, including research experiences, core and advanced neuroscience courses, seminars, and journal clubs.
For more information about this program please visit the NIH Blueprint for Neuroscience Research ENDURE Undergraduate Education page.
NIMH Support for Conference Grants (R13) to Promote Inclusion in the Research Workforce
Funding opportunity: NIH Support for Conference Grants and Scientific Meetings (Parent R13 Clinical Trial Not Allowed) (PA-21-151)
Through its support for mission-relevant scientific conferences, the NIMH seeks to promote inclusion within the neuroscience and mental health research workforce, with a particular focus on advancing the participation of women and individuals from underrepresented minority (URM) groups. Since the specific goal is to promote inclusion, meeting organizers should propose to use the funds for the following activities: support conference attendance for students, post-docs, and recently hired junior faculty within two years of their academic appointment; and along with conference expenses for trainees and junior faculty, meeting organizers should include formal networking sessions or specific programming events that employ approaches to enhance trainee learning, mentorship, inclusion, and professional development.
For more about this funding opportunity, please visit the NIMH Support for Conference Grants (R13) to Promote Inclusion in the Research Workforce website.
NIH Common Fund’s Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation (FIRST) Program
- NIH Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation (FIRST) Program: FIRST Cohort (U54 Clinical Trial Optional) (RFA-RM-20-022)
- NIH Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation (FIRST) Program: FIRST Coordination and Evaluation Center (U24 Clinical Trial Not Allowed) (RFA-RM-21-019)
NIH will provide support to institutions to recruit diverse groups or “cohorts” of early-stage research faculty and prepare them to thrive as NIH-funded researchers. Progress has been made to increase participation of historically underrepresented groups in biomedical research training stages, however members of these groups are still less likely to be hired into positions as independently-funded faculty researchers, according to previous studies . These groups include underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, individuals from disadvantaged backgrounds, and women. Two new funding announcements were released as part of the NIH Common Fund’s Faculty Institutional Recruitment for Sustainable Transformation (FIRST) program to enhance inclusive excellence at NIH-funded institutions.
Inclusive excellence has diversity and equity at its core, building inclusion into all organizational functions and establishing hallmarks for successful operationalization of inclusion. The FIRST program will provide funds for faculty recruitment and to establish inclusive environments at participating institutions to help those faculty succeed. The program’s estimated budget is $241 million over nine years, pending the availability of funds.
Administrative Supplements to Promote Diversity
Administrative supplements are available for some NIH Research Grants and Institutional Training Grants. Please see additional details in the following notices of funding opportunities regarding the specific career stages that can be supported and other eligibility requirements.
- Research Supplement to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Clinical Trial Not Allowed) (PA-23-189)
- Research Supplements to Promote Re-Entry and Re-integration into Health-Related Research Careers