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"Science knows no country, because knowledge belongs to humanity, and is the torch which illuminates the world.”

Louis Pasteur


NIH-Wellcome Trust Program

The Wellcome Trust and the National Institutes of Health have developed a new partnership that will provide opportunities for the most promising post-graduate students to undertake international, collaborative four-year PhD training based in both a UK/Republic of Ireland academic institution and the intramural campus of the NIH at Bethesda. 

About the Program

This partnership between the Trust and the National Institutes of Health unites the two organizations through their shared interest in promoting the training of exceptional students in international collaborative biomedical research. The program provides successful candidates with scientific and financial support that enables them to train in some of the best laboratories in academic institutions in the UK/Republic of Ireland and the NIH. Though the program is managed at NIH through the NIH Oxford-Cambridge Scholars Program, it should be emphasized that students are free to select labs at any academic institution in the UK or the Republic of Ireland.

  • The partnership funds up to five studentships per year.
  • Students undertake a collaborative project and are co-mentored by supervisors at both locations.
  • Students spend an equal amount of time in both laboratories, although the specific division of time is dictated by the nature of the research project.
  • The collaborative research project involves unique requirements and demands on both students and supervisors, and consequently it is vital that all project participants familiarize themselves with the Program Guidelines
  • Students become part of the NIH Graduate Partnership Community and enjoy access to the excellent support and benefits that the GPP programme provides.

What Does the Scheme Provide?

  • The studentship will be awarded for a four year period with support provided by the Trust (in the UK/Republic of Ireland), and the NIH (in the USA). The Trust funding will provide support for the student’s stipend, PhD fees, college fees if required, and a contribution toward research costs at whichever UK or RoI academic Institution the student selects.
  • While at the NIH, the student's stipend, health insurance, travel and research costs are the responsibility of the NIH mentor commensurate with those provided to other graduate students consistent with the customary practice for NIH training programs.


Applicants must be a UK/European Economic Area (EEA) national with (or be in your final year and expected to obtain) a first or upper-second-class honors degree or an equivalent EEA graduate qualification. Applicants must also have:

  •  A suitable doctoral supervisor at an eligible academic host institution in the UK or Republic of Ireland. The host institution must be able to confer doctoral degrees.
  •  A suitable supervisor at an NIH institute. The NIH supervisor should hold a tenured or tenure-track position for the period of the award and should be willing to provide funding for the student whilst at the NIH.

Application Process

Please visit the Wellcome Trust website for downloadable application forms and instructions regarding how to apply. This is an annual competition, and applicants for funding in the 2015 academic year must complete and submit their application forms in November (check w/Wellcome staff for exact dates). Applicants must send an electronic copy (as a Word document) of the completed application form to and a signed original to:

Dr. Heather Chaffey, Grants Advisor

Wellcome Trust

Gibbs Building

215 Euston Road

London NW1 2 BE, UK


Tel: +44 (0)20 7611 863

Late applications will not be accepted. Interviews for short-listed candidates will be held at the Wellcome Trust offices in London (dates TBA). Successful candidates will be expected to formally accept their award prior to attending an induction period at NIH in August/September.

NIH Contact

Dr. Daniel Douek  M.D., Ph.D., Wellcome Trust/NIH Studentship Program Director and Deputy Director


Dr. Jason Brenchley, Ph.D., Deputy Director