Application Deadline: September 1, 2017 (Applications for 2018 will be accepted after July 1, 2017)
The goal of the Informatics program is to promote development and use of novel informatics in an integrative approach toward understanding normal processes of human biology and disease processes.
Informatics awards support career development of scientists engaged in research that significantly integrates state-of-the-art information technology developed with advanced biological, chemical, and pharmacological sciences in the following areas:
- Genetics Proteomics
- Molecular Systems Biology
- Medical (human) Pathways and Networks
- Pharmaco- Integrative Biology
- Population Modeling and Simulation
- Novel approaches to the analysis of Big Data
Genomics Molecular Epidemiology
- The goal of this program is to support students in advanced stages of training and thesis research.
- To encourage the entry of well-trained investigators into the informatics field.
Eligibility & Requirements
- Applications must be submitted by an accredited U.S. college or university.
- Due to the high demand for this fellowship, the PhRMA Foundation will accept only two applications per academic institution.
- This program supports full-time, in-residence students who will have completed most of their pre-thesis requirements (at least two years of study) and be engaged in thesis research as Ph.D. candidates by the time the award is activated.
- For applications to be considered, proposals must contain innovative informatics components and not solely apply bioinformatics methodologies to experimental data analysis.
- The use of non-human model systems must be described in terms of its relationship to human biology and disease.
- Emphasis will be placed on the development of new informatics technologies that facilitate translation of data into an elucidation and understanding of human biological and disease processes. This includes the applicant’s identification of unmet clinical needs and a proposed solution.
- All applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents.
 Exceptions may be considered for institutions with multiple campuses.
 Students just beginning graduate school should not apply. A candidate enrolled in an M.D./Ph.D. program should not be taking required clinical coursework or clerkships while the fellowship is active. An individual may not simultaneously hold or interrupt any other fellowship providing stipend support while the PhRMA Foundation fellowship is active.
 Preference will be given to individuals whose research combines novel computational methods with experimental validation.
- This award provides $20,000 in stipend support per year for one or two years.
- Payments will be made directly to the university on a quarterly basis.
- $1,000 per year may be used for incidentals directly associated with the thesis research preparation (i.e. secretarial help, artwork, books, etc.)
- The program provides no other subsidies (travel, tuition, fringe benefit costs, etc.).
- PhRMA Foundation funds may not be used for indirect costs to the university.
- These funds are not transferable.
- A financial report from the university will be required at the conclusion of each year of the fellowship.
The second year of funding, if applicable, will be contingent on a progress report submitted to the Foundation and a satisfactory review by the Informatics Advisory Committee of the award recipient’s progress during the first 10 months of the fellowship. The decision will be based on overall adherence to the program’s goals, as well as the degree to which the awardee has adhered to originally proposed research. The Foundation must also receive certification from the thesis advisor that satisfactory progress is being achieved.
Pre Doctoral Fellowship Application Checklist
Please make a copy of this list to reference during the application process, as incomplete applications will not be considered.
1. General Registration Information
2. Applicant CV or Biosketch
3. Extended Letter
This letter is an opportunity to tell us who you are and to describe your career and future plans. Include a synopsis of your career, your professional interests, and your desired career path. The letter should not exceed two single-spaced pages (12-point font).
4. Thesis Project Description
The student’s detailed description of the thesis project, including objectives, rationale, methods of approach, preliminary results (if any exist), and a bibliography of major references. The first use of any abbreviation or acronym should be preceded by the full name or description. This statement (not including the bibliography) should not exceed six single-spaced pages (12-point font). Please use a format similar to the format specified for grants submitted to the National Institutes of Health. This proposal should be written by the applicant and submission of this document will serve as verification that it has been written by the student.
5. Research Abstract
Submit a titled abstract of approximately 200 words concerning your proposed research plan.
Unofficial copies should be scanned and uploaded along with the application. Arrange to have official hard copies sent to the PhRMA Foundation at 950 F Street, NW, Suite 300, Washington, DC 20004 by the deadline.
Without these transcripts, the application will be considered incomplete. Do not upload secure PDFs, as our reviewers will be unable to open the attachments.
7. GRE Results
Unofficial copies should be scanned and uploaded with the application. Arrange for official copies to be sent to the PhRMA Foundation by the deadline.The PhRMA Foundation’s institutional code is 5967.
We are aware that official copies are not available after five years. If we have questions regarding your scores, you will be contacted.
8. Thesis Advisor Information and Letter of Reference
- The thesis advisor should provide contact information and a biosketch.
- The reference letter should include an assessment of the applicant, the proposed research, and the training program.
- The thesis advisor should provide his or her history of training/mentoring and a description of the facilities and financial support that will be available to the candidate.
- List the number of other trainees who will be supervised during the candidate’s training period. Provide a list of research support, including current grants, pending applications, total amounts involved, and the duration. (Because the fellowship grants no research funds, this information is necessary to provide further perspective on the resources available for thesis research.)
- Demonstrate the department’s focus on the discipline, and specifically state that your department is responsible for the pertinent discipline’s training at your institution.
9. Department Chair Information and Letter of Reference
- The head of the administrative unit in which the applicant reports, e.g. department chair, program director, center director, institute director, etc. should provide contact information.
- This reference letter should include an assessment of the applicant and proposed research. Certify that the applicant is a full-time, in-residence Ph.D. candidate, and provide an estimate of when the candidate will complete the requirements for his or her Ph.D. Describe explicitly the support the department will provide to the student. Include any information on the candidate’s current source of support and pending applications for stipend support. If none are pending, please state this.
- If the department has a training grant, please note if it is limited to a specific area and the area on which the grant focuses. Indicate how many graduate students are in the department and how many are supported by the training grant.
10. Additional Letter
A reference letter from an individual other than the thesis advisor, who is knowledgeable about the candidate’s scientific skills, must comment on the candidate’s potential for a career in research.
Letters and third-party materials should not be uploaded by the applicant. The application process will request contact information, including an email address, for your chair, thesis advisor, and additional reference. These individuals will receive a prompt from the application system with instructions for uploading their document(s), which will be appended to the application. The deadline date for letters and third-party materials is September 15, 2017.
Based on our policy, we do not provide written reviews.
The 2018 Informatics Brochure will be available later this year.