- Northeastern: 12/01/2022
- Fellowship: 12/01/2022
The National Institutes of Health Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program is an accelerated, individualized doctoral training program for outstanding science students committed to biomedical research careers. The program is based on the British system, in which students perform doctoral research without required formal courses other than those students choose to take in relationship to their own interests. Students selected for admission to the program have already developed a passion for science through engagement in summer, job related, or undergraduate research programs.
Each NIH Oxford-Cambridge Scholar is given the opportunity to work with at least two different research supervisors — one at the NIH and one at either Oxford or Cambridge — on a project that involves a collaborative undertaking by the two laboratories. The doctoral degree is granted by either Oxford or Cambridge.
It is possible to pursue an MD/PhD, as well; interested students should consult the website for further details on this option.
Term Length: 4 years
US Citizenship Required
Applicants must be US citizens or permanent residents.
The NIH Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program seeks students of the highest academic caliber who are seeking to obtain a Ph.D. in the biomedical sciences. Successful applicants will spend half their time at the National Institutes of Health and the remainder at either Oxford or Cambridge in an intensive, research-driven, dual-mentored degree program. Students begin work to develop a dual-mentored thesis that meets their academic and research goals immediately upon acceptance. The scholar’s doctorate, usually completed in four years, is conferred by either Oxford or Cambridge, depending on where their research is done; hence applicants must meet requirements for acceptance into the graduate program of the relevant University.
Our expectations for the successful Scholar applicant include:
- While academic expectations, as measured by grades and test scores, are high–research experience, outside activities and letters of recommendation contribute to a holistic evaluation of the candidate.
- Successful applications have generally had one or more substantial research experiences, as we have observed that success and satisfaction in a research environment are the strongest predictive factors for success in the Scholars Program. Most successful applicants worked in a laboratory during college, and those with two-three plus years of research experience are not unusual.
- Many applicants have co-authored manuscripts in scientific journals, although this is not a prerequisite. In addition, some have presented their work in the form or talks or posters at national meetings.
- Outstanding letters of recommendation, particularly from research mentors, typifies the successful applicant and is weighed heavily in the evaluation process. Because of the dual-mentored nature of the program, mentors should comment on the student’s focus, organizational skills, and time management abilities as well as intellect, drive, creativity, general research abilities, and potential for a career in the biomedical sciences.
- Successful applicants have often been honored by their universities for academic or research achievements or by outside agencies such as the Beckman or Amgen Foundations, MARCS program or a Goldwater Scholarship.
- Applicants are asked to write a personal statement that details their motivation, experience, and long-term goals. The statement, which reflects the applicant’s focus and biomedical interests, factors heavily into the evaluation process. It should include a description of why the applicant feels they will thrive under the dual-mentored, accelerated process that characterizes the program.
Tuition and fees will be paid for by the program, while the stipend, medical benefits, and travel allowance for all four years of the program are funded by the NIH mentor. In addition, students receive mentoring and access to facilities from both the Oxford or Cambridge mentor and the NIH mentor.
- “Research Interests” briefly list:
- Field(s) of research you are interested in (e.g. neuroscience, imaging, immunology, biostatistics)
- “Research Experience” include:
- Research project title and goal
- Research internships
- Independent undergraduate research
- Major accomplishments and findings
- Research techniques learned
- “Publications and Presentations” include:
- Papers with author list and citation
- Thesis, abstracts, meetings, etc.
- “Awards & Honors” include:
- Undergraduate awards and recognitions
- Dean’s list
- Research fellowships
- Community citations
- “Extracurricular Activities” include:
- Leadership roles
- Memberships in professional associations
- GRE or MCAT scores are required
- List any scholarships (Marshall, Rhodes, Gates-Cambridge, NIH Cambridge Trust, Churchill, Fulbright, etc.) that you are in the process of applying for or have already submitted an application to.
- List potential mentors at the NIH and Oxford and/or Cambridge whose research you are interested in. You can search for NIH faculty members on the individual NIH institute web sites, which can be found through the NIH Intramural Research Program site.
Letters of Recommendation:
- Requests for letters of recommendation will be sent as soon as the contact information is entered for the individuals you indicate and the application is saved.
- You do not need to submit your application in order for these requests to be sent.
- Letter are due by December 2, 2022.
- Letters must be written and dated within the last 12 months.
- Only letters uploaded to the on-line application site will be accepted.
Keep in Mind:
Several partnerships require the UNIVERSITY application to be submitted by the UNIVERSITY deadline to receive full admission consideration.