June 21-22, 2022
Mentoring and highlighting future leaders in the life & biomedical sciences

Program Description

The Rockefeller University’s Exceptional Scholars Workshop seeks to increase diversity among faculty members, with a specific focus on individuals of racial, ethnic and/or disadvantaged backgrounds, and individuals with disabilities and other groups that are underrepresented in the life and biomedical sciences. This program provides a venue for mentorship and training of postdoctoral fellows from underrepresented groups to help these individuals excel during the faculty search and interview process. By participating in the Rockefeller University Exceptional Scholars program, each selected scholar will be paired with a faculty member for one-on-one mentorship for advice on the scholar’s seminar presentation, research statement, and subsequent faculty search. Scholars will be exposed to some elements that are part of most faculty job search processes. Participants will benefit from panel discussions and multiple opportunities to interact with Rockefeller University faculty, postdoctoral fellows, and students.

Program Objectives

  • To promote a strong collaborative network between future young leaders, we will gather for a two-day campus visit at Rockefeller University with all expenses paid as well as a $500 honorarium.
  • To help selected participants secure faculty positions where they can continue to lead, we will pair each with a Rockefeller faculty member who will provide one-on-one mentorship and guidance on the scholar’s research statement, seminar presentation, and subsequent faculty job application. We will also showcase an example chalk talk by a Rockefeller tenure-track faculty member and host panel discussions focused on guidance for navigating the faculty search process and achieving academic career success.
  • The workshop will enable networking interactions between scholars and a broad cross-section of faculty, postdoctoral fellows, and students of diverse expertise and backgrounds.

Program Eligibility

The Exceptional Scholars Workshop will accept applications from individuals of racial, ethnic, and/or disadvantaged backgrounds, and individuals with disabilities and other groups that are underrepresented in the life and biomedical sciences, and who expect to enter the tenure-track faculty job market in the next 1-2 years with a focus on research in basic and/or translational life or biomedical sciences. Along with a CV and a 500-1000 word research statement, we are requesting a 5-minute pre-recorded video presentation of the applicant’s current research, as well as a 250-500 word personal statement describing the applicant’s lived experience as a scientist from an underrepresented background and how this has shaped or informed the applicant’s future interests in life or biomedical sciences research. Further details on how to apply for the Exceptional Scholars Workshop may be found here.


The Rockefeller University gratefully acknowledges the generous support of the following sponsors for both the inaugural Exceptional Scholars Workshop and the newly launched Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Initiative.

Laureate ($100,000)

William E. Ford

Simons Foundation

Luminary ($50,000)

Marie-Josée and Henry R. Kravis

Merck & Co., Inc.

Benefactor ($25,000)

Global Blood Therapeutics

McKinsey & Company

David Sze and Kathleen Donohue

Patron ($15,000)

Sandra J. Horbach and Steven F. Skoler

Royalty Pharma

Sponsor ($10,000)


Friend ($5,000)

Equum Medical

Regina and Jeffrey Kessler

Andrew and Suzanne Plump