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The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine
Ford Foundation Fellowship Programs
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Ford Foundation Fellows are outstanding scholars recognized by their selection in the highly competitive Ford Foundation Fellowship Programs review process. The goals of these fellowships are to increase the diversity of the nation's college and university faculties by increasing their ethnic and racial diversity, to maximize the educational benefits of diversity, and to increase the number of professors who can and will use diversity as a resource for enriching the education of all students. This web page provides information for officials at educational institutions with the distinction of hosting Ford Fellows.

Ford Foundation Fellowships are awarded at the predoctoral, dissertation, and postdoctoral levels. Predoctoral fellowships provide three years of support ($27,000 per year) that can be used over a five year period. Predoctoral Fellows must be on Ford Fellowship tenure for the first year of the fellowship. Dissertation ($28,000) and postdoctoral ($50,000) fellowships provide one year of support.

The Fellowships Office of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine administers the Ford Foundation Fellowship Programs according to the terms of a grant from the Ford Foundation.

More information about the Ford Foundation Fellowship Programs can be found at:


Because of the highly competitive nature of the fellowships and the elite caliber of the Ford Fellows, the Fellowships Office asks that institutions waive all tuition and fees for Ford Fellows during academic periods when they are on Ford Fellowship tenure. In the event that health insurance fees are mandatory, it is expected that the PhD/ScD institution will also cover those fees for the students. Institutions are encouraged to supplement Ford Fellowship awards, when necessary, to provide equity with other university or departmental graduate stipends. Indirect or overhead costs are not to be deducted from the fellowship stipend award.

To request a roster of Ford Fellows at your institution, you may contact


Typically, annual stipends for Ford Fellows are disbursed directly to the Fellow by the Fellowships Office over a nine- or twelve-month period. In a limited number of cases, however, payments are disbursed through the institution when this arrangement is in the best interest of the Fellow(s). The Fellowships Office contacts these institutions each summer to arrange the transfer of stipend funds. Click here to view a list of these institutions for the current academic year.

In such cases, institutions should ensure that any Fellowship funds paid directly to the institution are disbursed to the Fellow(s) in full within the fellowship year for which they are provided.


Doctoral programs may include a reasonable amount of teaching or other activities that are designed to contribute to the Fellow's academic progress and career development. The scholarly and professional development of Fellows, rather than service to fellowship institutions, should govern the assignment of these activities. The Ford Foundation recognizes the value of teaching and research assistantships in providing experience to Fellows.

Participation in full-time paid or unpaid internships or other full-time paid activities, even if required for degree completion, cannot be undertaken during a tenure year. Ford Fellows are permitted to accept a part-time assistantship if 1) it is required by the program, 2) if it is necessary to secure stipend supplementation, benefits, or tuition waivers, or 3) if the assistantship is beneficial to the Fellow’s career development. However, the overall level of compensation should not exceed the amount of a standard assistantship salary at the department or institution. If the position is full-time, Fellows may not accept the assistantship.


Terms of Appointment for each fellowship level are posted online:

Predoctoral Terms of Appointment

Dissertation Terms of Appointment

Postdoctoral Terms of Appointment


For additional information or questions, contact the Fellowships Office by email or phone 202-334-2860.

Academic institutions seeking to initiate the process for mailing a fellowship refund check should contact