The AAI Fellowship Program for Career Reentry

  Applications are not being accepted in 2024

The AAI Fellowship Program for Career Reentry provides support for immunologists to reenter the workforce after a lapse of research or research training due to medical leave or family circumstances. This fellowship program will provide one year of salary support to postdoctoral trainees who have taken a leave of absence of one year or more for family-related issues, medical absences, or military obligations. These reasons primarily include recovering from a serious illness; caring for an immediate family member (spouse, child, or parent) with a serious illness or injury; providing elder or child care; or relocating due to a spousal career transition. The fellowship does not pay fringe benefits or other indirect costs to the institution.


An applicant must have a tentative written offer of appointment as a postdoctoral fellow, and the fellowship must be in immunology or a related field. Applicants who have recently begun a postdoctoral fellowship following a lapse of research (start date within a year of the application deadline) are also eligible. Funding mechanisms and levels must be confirmed by the department head or dean of the applicant’s prospective PI via signature on the Funding Confirmation Form (included with application). Trainees funded under the fellowship program may not be supported concomitantly by other fellowships that provide salary compensation.

Scientists employed by for-profit corporations or federal agencies are ineligible to apply.

AAI encourages applications from and for women and underrepresented minority scientists.


Award consideration is based on a combination of the qualifications of the applicant, the potential of the research project and lab environment, research and career accomplishments, and career potential.

Funding for successful applicants will commence in January 2024. Successful applicants will receive salary support for one trainee commensurate with the National Institutes of Health National Research Service Award (NRSA) standards in practice at the time of the award (see table below). Changes to NRSA standards after the fellowship award date will not result in additional or reduced compensation from AAI. Salary compensation levels for trainees in programs at non-US institutions will be determined according to the national salary guidelines of the country in which their institution is located but will not exceed the NRSA standard for the respective level of the trainee. No indirect costs will be made to the institution.

NIH NRSA Postdoctoral stipends
Year 0-1
Year 1-2
Year 2-3
Year 3-4
Year 4-5
Year 5-6

Terms and Conditions

If successfully funded, the trainee must confirm selection of a mentor following fellowship award notification, and provide documentation from the research institution of a full-time appointment as a postdoctoral trainee. Fellows must notify AAI and receive approval of any changes from the application, including mentor or project. Fellowship funds will be paid to the institution.

If successful candidates are not AAI members, they must join AAI prior to receiving fellowship funding. Salary support will be discontinued if the Fellow terminates or suspends employment for any reason (e.g. graduates, leaves lab, leave of absence, etc.) or if the Fellow fails to renew AAI membership during the award period.

Fellows are required to submit a short report and accounting of the use of funds just prior to the conclusion of the funding year. Any publications or works created by the Fellow must acknowledge support by this AAI program as follows: Author X was supported by The American Association of Immunologists through a Career Reentry Fellowship.

It is the responsibility the Fellow, in conjunction with their institution, to ensure that all academic and research activities carried out in or outside the US comply with the laws or regulations of the US and/or of the foreign country in which the academic and/or research activities are conducted.

Application Process

Applicants are required to provide the following in the application package:

  1. A statement regarding the circumstances of their career hiatus
  2. A statement of research history
  3. A description of the research project for the fellowship
  4. A brief statement of career history and goals including:
    • the circumstances that led the applicant to a career in science
    • the applicant’s most significant accomplishments (publications, awards, grants, invited talks, etc.)
    • description of career aspirations
    • how receiving the award will help the applicant’s career
  5. Two letters of recommendation. Letters may come from a laboratory supervisor/mentor, graduate school advisor, or thesis committee member. Letters should speak to the academic performance, work experience, laboratory skills, personal qualities, and/or circumstances of the career hiatus of the applicant.
  6. Proof of qualified offer of employment and Funding Confirmation Form from prospective PI (Please note that the Funding Confirmation Form page must be signed by the Department Chair/Dean.)
  7. Curriculum vitae

All documents should be uploaded as a single combined PDF file with a file name of less than 25 characters. Please be aware that the single, combined PDF must be no larger than 20MB. Send combined PDF to Packages that are not complete will not be considered. Final award decisions are at the discretion of AAI.

If the application deadline falls on a weekend day or a federal holiday, applications will be due on the next regular business day.

Please direct questions to

2024 Awardee

Aglaja Kopf

Laura Nicolas Gomariz, Ph.D. (AAI ’24)
Postdoctoral Fellow

Bao Q. Vuong, Ph.D. (AAI ’14)
Associate Professor

The City University of New York, USA


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