Two judges reviewing a graduate student's research project presentation

Doctoral Graduate to Postdoctoral Scholar Fellowship Program

About the Program

The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs is launching a beta test of a new Doctoral Graduate to Postdoctoral Scholar Fellowship Program (the "Doc to Postdoc Program") in academic year 2022-23.

During this inaugural year (fall 2022-spring 2023), a total of 15 awards will be offered that will facilitate the transition of talented graduate students into successful postdoctoral scholar appointments at UNLV for up to one year. Mentors, departments, and/or colleges may extend the postdoctoral scholar’s appointment beyond this program timeframe if they have the funds available to do so.

Note: A total of 10 awards were offered during the first cycle. A total of five awards will be offered for the second cycle.


The purpose of the Doc to Postdoc Fellowship Program is threefold:

  1. To provide an elevated opportunity for successful doctoral students who could defend their dissertation and graduate, but who are hesitant to do so because they have additional research work or scholarly opportunities to complete at UNLV. When we can move these doctoral graduates to completion and a postdoctoral scholar position, we improve doctoral time-to-degree and open a GA position for a new, incoming doctoral student.
  2. To encourage and support outstanding UNLV doctoral students who have demonstrated both potential and interest in furthering their careers as scholars and researchers, especially but not exclusively to promote diversity.
  3. To increase the number of postdoctoral scholars in the UNLV research ecosystem.

Program Structure

  • Applications for a “Doc to Postdoc” position must be submitted by the mentor, and the postdoctoral scholar must be identified in the request for funding. These are not open-ended funding opportunities or direct awards to doctoral students or postdocs. Rather, they are specific requests from a faculty member to support a specific doctoral student to become a postdoctoral scholar.
  • Students must submit a research summary outlining the proposed project. It must be significantly different from their doctoral dissertation research/project and must include a description of how a postdoctoral fellowship will advance their career. 
  • The postdoctoral scholar may be hired for one semester, two semesters, or a full year. The postdoctoral scholar may be retained longer than a year; but after 12 months, the Provost’s Office contribution will end.

Funding Parameters

  • Shared costing model: The Provost’s Office will cover 50% of the minimum annual salary, and the sponsoring college/school is required to cover the remaining salary. The host department shall budget for the position, and Academic Resources will pay 50% of the minimum salary in payroll. More details will be provided to awardees. Note: PTI funds cannot be used as shared costing for this program.
  • Minimum salary: The salary is $42,800 per year (mandatory minimum, prorated for appointments less than 12 months), plus fringe benefits. Departments are encouraged to pay a higher salary, but this postdoctoral fellowship program will cover 50% of this minimum rate only.
  • Mandatory teaching: Postdoctoral scholars in this program will be expected to teach one three-credit course per semester as part of the postdoctoral work assignment. The assignment of a faculty teaching mentor is encouraged, and the proposed courses must be listed in the support letter from the Dean.

How to Join the Program


  • Faculty applicants may be any tenured or tenure-track faculty member. An endorsement from their dean is required.
  • The postdoctoral scholar candidate must be a current doctoral student at UNLV in good standing with a planned graduation in fall 2022 or spring 2023, or a summer 2022 UNLV doctoral graduate.
  • Participants must graduate between December 2022 and June 2023 and begin their postdoctoral scholar appointment immediately thereafter.
  • Postdoctoral scholars must have a dedicated research mentor (who is the applicant to the program). A teaching mentor for the one-course-per-semester requirement is also strongly encouraged and may be the same as the research mentor or another UNLV faculty member.

Application Process

  • Faculty applicants must complete the short program application form that includes:
    • The postdoctoral nominee’s information: name, degree program, and planned graduation date.
    • The proposed start and end dates for the postdoctoral fellowship. The start date must be between September 2022 and June 2023, and this fellowship program only supports award periods up to one year (though they may be continued using faculty, department, or college funds after one year of program funding).
    • An outline of the intended postdoctoral research project, postdoctoral scholar’s responsibilities, and deliverables.
    • Information about any professional development activities that will be provided to this postdoctoral scholar.
    • A letter of recommendation explaining why this doctoral student is uniquely qualified for this postdoc opportunity; how they will contribute to diversity in the lab, department, or college (if applicable); and how this opportunity will prepare the postdoc for their desired career pathway.
  • Nominated students must submit a one-page summary outlining the proposed project. 
    • The proposed project must be different from their doctoral dissertation research/project.
    • The project must include a description of how a postdoctoral fellowship will advance their career. 
    • The document must be emailed to
  • A letter of support from the college dean must be sent to indicating which class/classes the postdoctoral scholar will teach.
  • International students are eligible to apply. Please contact the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs ( for additional information.
  • Note: fellowships are not intended to provide time for students to complete unfinished dissertation work or to convert dissertation work to published materials.

Evaluation Process

  • All applications must be submitted through the program application form.
  • All dean’s letters of support must be emailed directly to the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs:
  • All student summaries must be sent directly to the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs:
  • Awardees will be selected by a committee derived from the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs/Graduate College, the Vice President for Research, and the Senior Vice Provost for Academic Affairs.
  • The firm deadline for submission is 5 p.m. on Dec. 6, 2022. 


Alyssa Crittenden
Vice Provost and Dean of the Graduate College

Kate Korgan
Senior Vice Provost for Academic Affairs