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NOTE: Individuals who have held a PhD or MD degree for more than 5 years at the time of application are not eligible for an LSRF fellowship.

The application contains three tabs, Applicant Info, Research Proposal and Letters of Reference and Support. Instructions for filling out the application are provided below and next to the appropriate fields in the application. Read these instructions carefully before filling out the application.

You may begin your application even if your referees have not yet written their recommendations, but applicants will not be able to upload any additional material after the deadline of October 2, so be sure all requirements of your application are complete (except for supervisor and reference letters) by the deadline. THE APPLICANT CANNOT ACCESS HIS/HER FILES FOR EDITING OR ADDING MATERIAL AFTER OCTOBER 1. THIS ALSO MEANS YOU CANNOT ADD/CHANGE THE NAME OF A REFEREE AFTER OCTOBER 1. THE NAMES (WITH CORRECT EMAIL ADDRESSES) MUST BE LISTED BY OCTOBER 2.

Application Info

Complete all required fields (Note: a few required fields ask for information supplied elsewhere in the application. Entering this information twice in the application is necessary for administrative purposes).

Research Proposal

The Research Proposal is limited to SIX total pages: FIVE single-spaced pages for the research plan (this page limit includes figures and tables) and ONE page for the literature cited. The proposal and literature cited should be formatted with one-half inch (0.5) margins on all four sides of the paper and 12-point Times New Roman or 11-point Arial as the minimum font size for the text of the proposal and literature cited. You may use 10-point Times New Roman or 9-point Arial font type for the figure legends and tables. The style/presentation of the proposal is determined by the applicant, not LSRF. Be concise. Experts in the field review proposals; extensive background information is not necessary. For the literature citations, you must list the complete citation including all authors’ names, title, journal name, year, volume and page numbers. The 6 page Research Proposal MUST BE UPLOADED as a single document IN PDF FORMAT ONLY.

Letter of Reference and Support

All applications must contain a total of 4 letters of support – one supervisor letter and 3 reference letters.

THREE LETTERS OF REFERENCE must come from associates who can critically appraise the applicant’s qualifications. One letter should be from the applicant’s thesis advisor (if applicable – this does not apply to M.D. applicants). You may still apply if you do not submit your thesis advisor’s letter, but your file will not be as strong. The Supervisor may not serve as one of the three referees.

LETTER OF SUPPORT FROM SUPERVISOR should acknowledge acceptance of the applicant to their laboratory and the willingness of the Institution to administer the award. The letter should indicate the role expected of the applicant in the broad framework of the supervisor's research noting the size of the research group and the degree of independence the applicant will have. Individuals who are remaining in their thesis labs to do postdoctoral research are not eligible for an LSRF fellowship. *If you have joint supervisors, please note that only one supervisor letter may be submitted. The letter should state each supervisor’s role and be signed by both supervisors.


You will receive confirmation emails when the application is finalized and when each of the references/supervisors submits their letters.  If you fail to receive these confirmations or wish to check the status of submission of these letters, click the link in the email of the confirmation of application submission or contact Susan Direnzo at direnzo@lsrf.org.



Verify that all email addresses listed (yours, your supervisor, your references) are correct and current.  Proofread all typing after inserting these into the application.  If the email address is not correct your supervisor and referees will not receive the email from LSRF with the instructions and link to upload their letters.  AN INCORRECT EMAIL ADDRESS IS THE NUMBER ONE MISTAKE THAT APPLICANTS MAKE.

Supervisor and all Referee’s names must be listed by the applicant before the deadline. These names and addresses cannot be listed after October 2.

List all Supervisor and Referee’s names and email addresses; do not list his/her assistant’s email address.  LSRF must have all the recommender’s information on file.  Do not list more than one supervisor/referee in each slot.  (Joint supervisors may be discussed in the single supervisor letter.)

If you encounter a problem in uploading your files into the application try switching the web browser you are using. If that doesn’t help it may be that your file is too large.

U.S. citizens are eligible to work in any geographic location while holding an LSRF fellowship.  Non-U.S. citizens must work in a U.S. laboratory to be eligible for an LSRF fellowship.

A laboratory may have only one LSRF fellow at a time. Multiple applicants may apply from the same laboratory however, if multiple applicants from the same laboratory are selected as finalists only one fellowship may be awarded. You may apply if there is already an LSRF fellow in the proposed laboratory and the existing fellow is in their final year of funding. In this case if you are awarded, your fellowship would begin as the current fellow's funding ends and there is no conflict.   

Individuals who have held a PhD or MD degree for more than 5 years at the time of application are not eligible for an LSRF fellowship.

Individuals intending to remain in their thesis labs to complete their proposed LSRF postdoctoral research project are not eligible for an LSRF fellowship. You must complete your LSRF research project in a different lab. Working as a postdoc in your thesis lab for a brief period before moving to your new postdoc lab is acceptable.

LSRF does not require letters or signatures from your institution’s grants office at the time of application. The only requirement is that you list his/her name and email address.  If and when an applicant is chosen for a fellowship, both you and the institution will be contacted. We recommend that you provide a copy of your completed application along with these instructions to your sponsored programs office so they are aware of your application.

LSRF does not require a budget. The award is $62,000/year for three years ($186,000 total). $52,000/year is for the fellow's stipend/salary and the remaining $10,000/year is a research allowance for the fellow. The research allowance is to be used for laboratory research supplies, scientific meeting registration and travel expenses (including the LSRF Annual Meeting), small equipment (including computer workstations, a laptop, printer) and up to $2,000/year may be applied toward the fellow's health/fringe benefits. Acceptance of the LSRF Fellowship Award requires the host institution to commit funds to cover the awardee's benefit costs in excess of $2,000. Funds are paid quarterly to the fellow's host institution and the fellow is paid by the host institution, not LSRF. No indirect or overhead costs may be charged to the fellowship.

LSRF does not require college transcripts, animal certification documents or any type of visa documents.

LSRF must be notified if you accept another fellowship at any time during the application, review and funding search process (October 2 through August 1).  An email to Susan DiRenzo will suffice.

LSRF cannot supply you with a sample proposal, nor can it supply you with a critique of your submission.

LSRF receives more than 1000 applications per year and awards 15-25 fellowships per year. The number of fellowships awarded depends entirely on our fundraising efforts that year. The LSRF does not have an endowment. We were able to fund 55 of our 50 finalists in 2015 and 21 of 55 finalists in 2016.

Timeline for Application Submission, Evaluation and Funding 

September: Website opens for applications 

October 2: Application deadline

November 1: Supervisor and reference letters deadline

December: Applications sent to members of the Peer Review Committee for initial review

February: Peer Review Committee meets to choose approximately 55-60 finalists

Feb/March: Applicants are informed if they are finalists. (Non-finalists are also notified.)

February/March to August: LSRF solicits existing and new potential sponsors to fund the finalists. Finalists are notified immediately if funding is secured for their project. Approximately 18-25 finalists each year are matched successfully with sponsors.

August 1: Award activation date - THIS IS THE ONLY AWARD ACTIVATION DATE

Questions and inquiries pertaining to the submission of applications should be sent to:

Susan DiRenzo, Assistant Director

Email : direnzo@lsrf.org