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SFARI Bridge to Independence Award -- Request for Applications
The SFARI Bridge to Independence (BTI) program engages talented early-career scientists from diverse and/or historically underrepresented backgrounds to pursue research in autism and facilitates their transition into independent faculty positions at research institutions within or outside the U.S.
The program is aimed at Ph.D. and/or M.D.-holding scientists from diverse and/or historically underrepresented groups in science who are currently in a non-independent, mentored training position at an institution within or outside the U.S. and who will be actively seeking and applying to tenure-track faculty positions between September 2024–May 2025. Independence Fellows are expected to apply, secure and transition to a tenure-track faculty position at a research institution within or outside the U.S. by the end of the 2025–2026 academic year. U.S. citizenship or permanent resident status is not required. The BTI Award program welcomes applications that span the breadth of science that SFARI supports, including genetics, molecular mechanisms, circuits and systems, and clinical science.
Independence Fellows will receive up to two (2) years of postdoctoral fellowship support during their job search, with an annual salary of $85,000 USD, fringe benefits, an annual resource and professional development allowance of $10,000 USD, and indirect costs (see our grant policies) followed by a commitment of $600,000 USD over three (3) years, including indirect costs (see our grant policies), activated upon assumption of a tenure-track research professorship. The fellows will form a learning community and engage in professional development activities throughout their transition to research independence.
Interested faculty at Duke can contact Brooke Church (firstname.lastname@example.org) for assistance.
Applications and Letters of Recommendation due: January 10, 2024
To be eligible for the SFARI BTI Award, applicants must meet the following criteria. We will rely on your signed self-attestation and cannot make any other formal determination regarding your identity, disability status or disadvantaged social and/or economic background. We recognize that diversity varies across different settings and across countries. For additional information, see our FAQ.
- The program is open to individuals who self-identify as members of diverse groups within these categories: race, ethnicity, disadvantaged social and/or economic background, gender identity, sexual orientation and disability status. Examples of eligible applicants include individuals identifying as:
- Having a disability;
- A woman;
- A member of the LGBTQIA+ community or a sexual or gender minority;
- For U.S. applicants, studied or are currently in a position at a Historically Black College and University (HBCU), Hispanic-serving Institution (HSI), Tribally Controlled Colleges and University (TCCU), Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Serving Institution or Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institution (AANAPISI); or
- Coming from a disadvantaged social and/or economic background. We will consider individuals to have come from a disadvantaged background if they meet two (2) or more of the following criteria:
- Were or currently are homeless;
- Were in the foster care system;
- Have/had no parents or legal guardians who completed a bachelor’s degree;
- Were eligible for government-assisted meal programs, such as, for U.S. applicants, the U.S. Federal Free and Reduced Lunch Program;
- Were eligible for government-assisted programs for low-income individuals, such as, for U.S. applicants, the U.S. Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children as a parent or child;
- For U.S. applicants, were eligible for U.S. Federal Pell grants; or
- For U.S. applicants, grew up in one of the following areas: (a) a U.S. rural area, as designated by the Health Resources and Services Administration Rural Health Grants Eligibility Analyzer, or (b) Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services-designated Low-Income and Health Professional Shortage Areas (qualifying zip codes are included in the file).
- U.S. citizenship or permanent resident status is not required.
- Applicants must hold a Ph.D. and/or M.D., or equivalent degree.
- Applicants must be currently in a non-independent, mentored training position as recognized by their institution.
- Applicants must be actively seeking and applying to tenure-track faculty positions at research institutions within or outside the U.S. between September 2024 and May 2025. Independence Fellows are expected to apply, secure and transition to a tenure-track faculty position at a research institution within or outside the U.S. by the end of the 2025–2026 academic year.
- Applicants may not simultaneously hold other career development awards with similar budgetary scopes, such as: NIH K99/R00, Burroughs Wellcome Fund Career Award, American Academy of Neurology Career Development Award and Howard Hughes Medical Institute Hanna H. Gray Fellowship.
- Applicants must not have accepted a formal offer for a tenure-track faculty position by the time of award notification.
- Applicants are limited to one application resubmission (a total of two (2) submissions to the SFARI BTI RFA).