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Selection

Eligibility

Candidates must have completed, or expect to complete, all the requirements for the conferral of their PhD, including a successful defense, typically by 1 July of the year of Selection.

Conferral is taken to mean all official requirements have been met to enable your PhD awarding institution to confirm that you may use a PhD title. We do not require the graduation ceremony to have taken place, but candidates must have submitted and defended their thesis and be able to provide formal proof that all requirements are met for the PhD.

We do not normally allow Fellows to receive any awards or remuneration from other organizations concurrent with the Fellowship. Supplementary funding for research and other professional development is allowed and encouraged. With program approval, a Fellow may also retain the title of another Fellowship during the Fellowship Year if personal remuneration is not accepted.

Eligibility FAQs

What PhD status do candidates need to have?

Candidates must have fulfilled, or expect to fulfil, all of the requirements for the conferral of their PhD, including a successful defence between 1st May of the announcement year and 30th June of the Fellowship year.

Conferral is taken to mean all official requirements have been met to grant graduate status from the awarding institution and that the candidate will be entitled to use the PhD title. We do not require the graduation ceremony to have taken place, but by 30th June of the Fellowship year candidates must have submitted and defended their thesis and be able to provide formal proof that all requirements are met for the PhD.

This requirement is necessary for selected Fellows to be able to legitimately undertake a postdoctoral placement at the start of their Fellowship year and to meet any applicable visa criteria for placements overseas.

May a candidate already have a post-doctoral position?

It is possible to have already begun a post-doctoral position, but candidates will be expected to consider at least three options for potential placements during the Fellowship year, and the placement must represent a true interdisciplinary pivot from their PhD studies. Placements undertaken for Schmidt Science Fellows are subjected to discussion with, and approval by, program leadership.

Candidates should not assume that a pre-existing position will be automatically approved or denied. Applicants should view the Fellowship year as an opportunity to go anywhere in the world to acquire new skills in a new discipline, and we require a flexible approach towards placements.

Are MD/ Veterinary students allowed to apply to Schmidt Science Fellows?

MD-PhD and Veterinary-PhD candidates on clinical tracks are not eligible for consideration as a Schmidt Science Fellow at this time.

Are Social Science PhDs allowed to apply to Schmidt Science Fellows?

No. Our disciplinary remit is defined as candidates having conducted their graduate degrees in the natural sciences (Astronomy, Biology, Chemistry, Physics and Earth Sciences), Engineering, Mathematics, or Computing – and all sub-disciplines therein.

Can Schmidt Science Fellows pivot into the Social Sciences?

We encourage Schmidt Science Fellows to think broadly, deeply, and globally about where they undertake their Fellowship placements, and it is a selling point of the Fellowship that Fellows may undertake their placements in any laboratory that aligns with the program vision and the individual training needs of the Fellow. We do not encourage pivots into particular research areas or impose boundaries in this regard. The program aims to advance scientific discovery through interdisciplinary research and training, so an argument will need to be made for how a pivot into any discipline will facilitate that scientific advancement.

Can Schmidt Science Fellowships be held concurrently with other awards?

We do not allow concurrent Fellowships which would impose significant demands on our Fellows’ time and ability to be fully involved with our Program (e.g., attend Global Meetings, be active in the placement, etc.). Fellows cannot receive any personal stipend from another Fellowship scheme. They may be entitled to hold the title of Fellow from another scheme if that scheme allows such recognition without a monetary award. Schmidt Science Fellows are able to receive grant funding for their research and are actively supported in applying for such funding during their Fellowship year. They are also allowed to hold minor awards (e.g., travel and equipment grants) during their Fellowship year, and we strongly encourage them to be applying for further awards during their Fellowship year to support their future careers.