SLOAN-DOE POSTDOCTORAL FELLOWSHIPS IN COMPUTATIONAL MOLECULAR BIOLOGY
Sorin C. Istrail
scistra at cs.sandia.gov
Mon Apr 15 23:26:45 EST 1996
ALFRED P. SLOAN FOUNDATION
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY
CATALYZING CAREER TRANSITIONS TO COMPUTATIONAL MOLECULAR BIOLOGY
POSTDOCTORAL FELLOWSHIPS IN COMPUTATIONAL MOLECULAR BIOLOGY
The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the U.S. Department of Energy
believe that a nexus with exceptional scientific potential is emerging
between the powerful theoretical and practical tools of molecular
biology and the revolutionary power of modern computational
techniques. However, too few scientists possess the
cross-disciplinary skills in both molecular biology and computation
that are needed to further such advances.
The purpose of these fellowships is to catalyze career transitions
into computational molecular biology from physics, mathematics,
computer science, chemistry, and related fields. Ideal candidates
will have strong educational backgrounds in such fields and wish to
bring these backgrounds to bear upon computational molecular research
questions. In exceptional cases, we will also consider applications
from more traditional biological orientations in transition to
computational molecular biology. Applicants already firmly rooted in
computational molecular biology, or who are proposing to continue
pursuit of research undertaken for their Ph.D.s, may be more
appropriate candidates for other postdoctoral opportunities.
We are therefore supporting this postdoctoral program designed to give
computationally sophisticated young scientists an intensive
postdoctoral opportunity in an appropriate molecular biology
laboratory. We particularly wish to encourage applications from those
holding doctorates in mathematics, physics, computer science,
chemistry, or other relevant fields who would like to develop the
capacity to apply their computational sophistication to the complex
problems that increasingly face molecular biology.
The focus of this program is upon those aspects of computational
molecular biology related to data and information resulting from the
study of human and other genomes. Computational molecular biology is
taken broadly to include the application of mathematics (continuous
and discrete), statistics, probability, and computer science to
fundamental problems of molecular biology. The goal is to foster
interactions between the mathematical and biological sciences and to
provide rigorous training for scientists in this new interdisciplinary
area. Of special interest are important problems in structural
biology and genome analysis, including analysis of protein and nucleic
acid sequence, protein and nucleic acid structure, genome structure
and maps, cross-species genome analysis, multi-genic traits, and
structure-function relationships where the structures are from
genomes, genes, or gene products.
Applications will be reviewed by:
Leroy E. Hood, University of Washington
Eric S. Lander, Whitehead Institute/MIT
Michael S. Waterman, University of Southern California
Fred E. Cohen, University of California, San Francisco
Awards will support up to two years of research work in an appropriate
molecular biology department or laboratory in the U.S. or Canada
selected by the applicant. The principal selection criteria will be
the potential of the applicant and the proposed postdoctoral research
and training plan for furthering rigorous computational approaches to
analysis of important molecular biological problems, both theoretical
and empirical. The capabilities of the proposed laboratory and senior
scientist in computational molecular research, and support for the
postdoctoral research by the senior scientist (department chair or
laboratory director) will be an important element considered in
selection. In addition, where possible, applicants are encouraged to
seek a secondary faculty sponsor from the mathematical/computer
sciences sector of the same campus. Only one proposal per applicant
will be considered, and a senior scientist should endorse only one
applicant for this competition.
There are no formal application forms needed for this program.
Further details and application procedures are as follows:
NUMBER, STARTING DATE AND GRANT PERIOD:
Up to 10 fellowships will be granted during 1996, each with a total
budget of $100,000 (including indirect and overhead costs, which
together will be limited to 15% of direct costs). These funds are to
be spread over a grant period of two years ($50,000 per year).
Selections for this second deadline will be announced in November,
1996. Funding may begin any time after January 1, 1997.
- $42,000 per year to Fellow, inclusive of benefits.
- $ 1,500 per year in research expenses to be allocated at the
discretion of the Fellow.
- Institutional overhead of up to 15% of direct costs.
Fellow - Applicants must be citizens or legal permanent residents of
the United States. Ph.D. earned within the past 5 years or expected
by December, 1996, in mathematics, physics, computer science,
chemistry or other relevant fields. (Initiation of postdoc requires
completion of Ph.D.) Applications to extend an existing postdoc
cannot be considered.
Institution - Non-profit private or public institution of higher
education or research, located in the United States or Canada.
Applicant must make formal arrangements with a senior scientist (e.g.
laboratory director) at the institution where the postdoctoral
fellowship would be held before applying for the award.
MATERIALS NEEDED FOR APPLICATION
FROM APPLICANT (8 COPIES, FULLY COLLATED):
Cover Page, including:
Applicant's name, address, telephone, fax and e-mail
Applicant's current department and institution
Title of proposed postdoctoral research project and
institution at which it would be conducted (including
mail and email addresses and telephone and fax numbers)
Planned start date of proposed fellowship
Applicant's Ph.D. granting institution and
year of receipt (or date expected)
Laboratory, department and institution in
which postdoctoral fellowship would be held
Name, address, telephone, etc. of senior scientist
Names, addresses, telephone numbers, etc. of references (see below)
Brief abstract of proposed research (less than 100 words)
Proposed research/training plan describing scientific importance of
subject, with considerable specificity as to analytic methods and data
to be employed, and reason for choice of proposed sponsoring scientist
and institution (with a firm maximum of 1,500 words, including
If desired, copies of up to two reprints may be attached to each
collated copy of proposal.
Statement of applicant's reasons for interest in computational
molecular biology, current career goals, and potential role of
postdoctoral fellowship in attaining such goals (ca. 250 words).
A summary of the major findings of the applicant's dissertation
research (250 words).
Curriculum vitae including educational background, topic of doctoral
dissertation, positions held to date, scientific awards and grants
received citing source, duration and amount (direct costs), full
titles and references of all publications.
Formal institutional endorsement of proposal may be included, but is
not required unless and until a formal award offer has been made.
A stamped, self-addressed postcard (if applicant desires) to confirm
that application materials have been received (allow at least 3 weeks
for processing; no telephone calls, please).
All applications should be final and complete; no substitutions or
FROM SPONSORING SENIOR SCIENTIST (8 COPIES, FULLY COLLATED):
Letter of agreement to host and supervise the research of postdoctoral
applicant, including any necessary institutional clearances, e.g.
animal experimentation, human subjects, recombinant DNA, etc.
Qualitative comments concerning scientific merit of proposed research
and training plan.
Brief description (500 words) of current research, sources of funding,
relevance of applicant's proposed research, and personnel with whom
applicant would work.
Curriculum vitae including educational background, current and former
positions, scientific awards and grants received citing source,
duration and amount (direct costs), full titles and references of
publications related to computational molecular biology.
FROM REFERENCES (8 COPIES):
The applicant must request reference letters from three scientists in
relevant disciplines who are knowledgeable about applicant's
capabilities and previous research, and to whom he/she has sent a copy
of the research/training plan proposed for the postdoctoral
fellowship. If possible, one of these three should have personal
knowledge of the applicant's doctoral research, and all must comment
on the applicant's summary of the major findings of his/her recent
Reference letters should include comments on overall ranking of
applicant, e.g. top 1% of Ph.D.s, top 10%, etc. It is the applicant's
responsibility to assure that reference letters (8 copies) are sent.
DEADLINE AND ANNOUNCEMENTS:
The deadline for receipt of all application materials from applicant,
sponsoring scientist, and related reference letters is August 1, 1996
(firm). Announcements will be made by November, 1996.
SEND APPLICATION TO:
Dr. Michael S. Teitelbaum
Sloan-U.S. Department of Energy
Joint Postdoctoral Fellowships
in Computational Molecular Biology
c/o Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
630 Fifth Avenue, Suite 2550
New York, NY 10111-0242
NOTE: This announcement is largely the same as one originally
distributed in September, 1995, with some minor editorial
clarifications, necessary changes to deadlines and notification dates,
and changes in financial provisions.
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