The Searle Scholars Program

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The Searle Scholar Program awards grants to support the research of outstanding individuals who have recently begun their appointment at the assistant professor level, and whose appointment is their first tenure-track position at one of the 155 institutions invited to nominate applicants. For the 2013 competition, faculty members must have been appointed to their first tenure track assistant professorship on or after July 1, 2012.

Applicants’ research interests may be in biochemistry, cell biology, genetics, immunology, neuroscience, pharmacology, and related areas in chemistry, medicine, and the biological sciences. The Searle Scholar Program does not fund purely clinical research, but has supported research programs that include both basic and clinical components. MDs doing basic research are eligible; however, the research must have a strong basic focus. Research that is viewed as primarily clinical will not be competitive. The focus of the review will be on selecting individuals who show substantial promise for making innovative and high-impact contributions to research over an extended period of time.

15 awards will be made out of the potential applicant pool of 155 (10%). The awards will be in the amount of $300,000 paid over three years ($100,000 per year).

The University of Rochester can nominate one applicant, who must be nominated by the Provost. The Provost has requested one recommendation each from the College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Engineering, and the School of Medicine and Dentistry.

Eligibility Requirements

Applicants must be in their first or second year as an Assistant Professor, in a tenure track position, and must have begun their first appointment at the Assistant Professor level on or after July 1, 2012. Applicants are not required to be US citizens.

Protected Time Requirement: No.

Mentoring Requirement: No.

Limitations on other Awards: No.

Other Requirements/Limitations: None.

Individuals with questions about eligibility criteria should contact Dr. Paul A. Spengler, Director of UR Foundation Relations, at 276-3955 or

Internal Selection Process

Interested faculty at the River Campus must e-mail their expressions of interest to Debra Haring (Arts and Sciences) ( or Cindy Gary (Engineering) ( by April 1, 2013. Please type SEARLE SCHOLAR AWARD in the subject line.

Interested faculty at the Medical Center must e-mail their expressions of interest to Catherine Muzytchuk ( by April 15, 2013. Please type SEARLE SCHOLAR AWARD in the subject line.

The expression of interest must include:

(1) A chair’s letter recommending the candidate;

(2) The candidate’s biosketch or CV; and

(3) A brief, three-page abstract of the proposed research.

URMC faculty must use the attached forms, including the cover page. 

The Deans will review the expressions of interest and forward their recommendations to the Provost. The nominee will be notified on or about May 15, 2013.

Foundation Application Deadline

Once the nominee has been selected, the Provost’s Office will notify the Searle Scholar Program, which will make the online application portal available to the designated nominee.

As part of the application, the applicant must include a department chair statement and three letters of reference, including one each of his/her doctoral and postdoctoral mentor, or similarly placed individuals.

Pending final confirmation by the Searle Scholar Program, the application deadline will be September 28, 2013. Per University policy, the UR nominee must submit his/her application five business days in advance (September 21, 2013) and provide Foundation Relations with a final copy for review 10 business days in advance (September 14, 2013).

The UR nominee should contact Dr. Spengler to review program guidelines and for assistance with the application.

Information on previous Searle Scholars, and the membership of the Advisory Board which reviews grant applications, can be found here.The Searle Scholars Program website can be found here.


NIH Funding Acknowledgement ** Important ** All publications resulting from the utilization of CTSI resources are required to credit the CTSI grant by including the NIH FUNDING ACKNOWLEDGEMENT and must comply with the NIH Public Access Policy.