Fellowships & Awards

The Graduate School maintains a database of fellowship opportunities for incoming and current PhD students. The list includes fellowships administered by The Graduate School and School of Medicine, as well as funding opportunities from elsewhere at Duke and from external funding sources. 

The Office of Biomedical Graduate Education (OBGE) manages the following fellowship opportunities and awards for incoming and current PhD students in the School of Medicine:

The Dean’s Scholarship is awarded to highly meritorious incoming domestic biomedical PhD students in the School of Medicine whose applications indicate an ability and desire to contribute to creating a unique learning environment. Each year applicants are nominated by their programs and vetted by a faculty committee. A one-time award of $2,000 is given to top student awardees designated as Dean’s Scholars to supplement their institutional stipend.

The Dean’s Scholarship for International Students is awarded at the end of the first year of study. International students who have shown promise through their first-year rotations, coursework, and contributions to the academic community are nominated by their programs and vetted by a faculty committee. International student awardees are supported for their second year of graduate school with a stipend, tuition remission, fees, and health insurance. 

View current and past recipients of the Dean's Scholarships
Prior to Spring 2024, the awards were called Chancellor's Scholarships

The Office of Biomedical Graduate Education (OBGE) works to recognize current biomedical PhD students in the School of Medicine who have been unusually successful in the research mission. To that end, the Dean’s Award for Research Excellence (DARE) was created in Fall 2018 (at that time, under the name Chancellor's Award for Research Excellence (CARE)). The Dean's Award for Research Excellence is targeted to senior students who have excelled in the basic research endeavor, evidenced by an exceptional publication record and/or a substantial impact on the research trajectory of the lab. The DARE is highly selective. Nominations are submitted by a student's faculty advisor and approximately four awards are granted each year. This award comes with an engraved memento, a cash award of $1,500, and a reception honoring awardees.

View current and past recipients of the Dean's Award for Research Excellence
Prior to Spring 2024, the awards were called Chancellor's Award for Research Excellence

OBGE Professional Development Awards are designed to support professional development for biomedical PhD trainees who have shown an interest in engaging in OBGE’s mission to develop student’s full potential as independent scientists. The award provides reimbursement or travel advance for activities that directly enhance the recipient’s professional growth, including, but not limited to conference registration and travel and workshop attendance.  

Awards are open to full-time biomedical PhD students in any School of Medicine or Interdisciplinary PhD program. To be considered, applicants must have successfully completed the preliminary exam prior to submitting an application and have engaged in one of the optional OBGE BIOTRAIN courses or O2 series programs. Each recipient will receive an award of up to $1000.  

Submission Deadlines

Current Award Cycle: July 1, 2022 - June 30, 2023

Window 1

Window 2

Window 3

Due June 1

Notification June 15

Due October 1

Notification October 15

Due February 1

Notification February 15



  1. Applicants must be full-time biomedical PhD students in any of the School of Medicine and Interdisciplinary PhD programs.  
  2. Applicants must have successfully completed preliminary exams to be considered.
  3. Applicants are eligible to receive one Professional Development Award during their PhD training experience.
  4. Awards cannot be used for computers or other personal electronic devices.
  5. All award funds must be expended within the fiscal year designated by the award.
  6. Awards will not be applied retroactively for travel completed prior to notification of award.
  7. For reimbursements, funds will be reimbursed once the entire sum has been expended. If appropriate documentation is not provided, the award will be rescinded and the recipient will be responsible for the costs incurred.
  8. Some expenditures may be eligible for pre-payment through the OBGE office. Please contact obge@duke.edu to inquire about pre-payment.
  9. Recipient must be enrolled as a PhD student at time of reimbursement.
  10. Funds must be expended as outlined in the application and budget.  Because award decisions are based upon the original application, the award may not be used for any purpose other than that originally proposed. If the recipient is not accepted to a competitive workshop, or decides s/he would prefer to attend a different conference, receives additional funds that cover the cost, or otherwise changes his/her plans due to personal or professional reasons, the award will be rescinded.  

Application requirements

  1. A one-page cover letter (see requirements below)
  2. An up-to-date T3 Professional Development Tab
  3. A detailed budget proposal

Cover letter requirements

  1. A brief description of the applicant’s research topic and its significance.
  2. A description of the applicant’s career goals with a description of how this award will help the applicant achieve those goals.
  3. A listing of OBGE courses and programs in which the applicant has participated and what the applicant has gained from participating.
  4. A proposed use for the award funds.
  5. If the application is for a conference, applicant must provide the conference name, location and dates (including conference URL if available); if presenting, attach an abstract.  

Please submit application materials as a single PDF document to OBGE Director of Trainee Development Kristin Russell at kristin.russell@duke.edu.


The Duke University School of Medicine Office of Biomedical and Graduate Education (OBGE) and Precision Genomics Collaboratory offer pilot grants open to all SOM Biomedical PhD students. The goal of these grants is to support our students in scientific and educational efforts to bolster their graduate training experiences. These funds can be used for either research or professional development, for example, for travel to conferences, educational opportunities/seminars, new experiments to generate preliminary data, etc.


All Duke School of Medicine Ph.D. students broadly involved in genomic/omics sciences (basic, translational, and/or clinical)


$2,000 (three one-time awards will be given per cycle)


Multiple proposal windows are offered each year. See the Precision Genomics Collaboratory website for the current deadline.

Application Process  

Please send a CV, a brief proposal (<1 page, please include how you will use the funds), and a brief letter of support from either the student’s laboratory principal investigator or their Director of Graduate Studies to the Precision Genomics Collaboratory (genomicscollaboratory@duke.edu) by 11:59 pm on the deadline date.


The Duke University SOM offers a standing pilot grant mechanism jointly offered by the Office of Biomedical and Graduate Education (OBGE) and the Precision Genomics Collaboratory to support PhD students who are broadly involved in the genomics/omics sciences. This includes basic (i.e. preclinical genetic models, molecular genetics, genome editing, transcriptional regulation, disease genomics/omics), translational (i.e. biomarker discovery, genetic epidemiology, omics profiling), and clinical (i.e. biomarker translation, genomics implementation, biorepository/cohort building) sciences. These grants are intended to be broadly used to support work that would not otherwise be funded through traditional mechanisms or are not otherwise able to be funded through the PhD student’s current program/PI.

Grants will be for $2000 per individual, with three awards given per funding cycle. Scoring considerations will include: (1) merit (i.e. scientific premise for proposed experiments, unique educational opportunities, etc.); (2) need (i.e. line of investigation or educational opportunity would not otherwise be financially supported); and (3) potential output (i.e. leading to new funding, would enable a new line of investigation, would lead to new collaborations, etc.). Applicants should also include generally how the funds will be used (a detailed budget is not necessary.

Funds must be used within six months of award and a brief (one paragraph) written summary describing how the funds were used must be submitted to the Precision Genomics Collaboratory at award end.