American Society of Hematology

Research Training Award for Fellows

The 2017 application cycle is now open. Please visit the ASH awards site to begin your application.

The ASH Research Training Award for Fellows (RTAF) is designed to encourage junior researchers in hematology, hematology/oncology, or other hematology-related training programs to pursue a career in academic hematology. The RTAF awards $70,000 to fellows in training so they will have protected time for research and is to be used primarily for salary support for the applicant. Recipients of the RTAF must have completed training on a T32 (if on a T32), be in an ACGME-approved program, and have 75 percent protected time to pursue their research.

Awards are targeted to two separate groups of researchers:

  1. Junior Investigators in their second and third-year of fellowship, and Senior Investigators in their fourth or fifth-year of fellowship who have an MD or DO without a biomedical PhD
  2. Junior Investigators in their second and third-year of fellowship, and Senior Investigators in their fourth or fifth-year of fellowship who have an MD or DO with a biomedical PhD.

The goals of this program are to:

  • Encourage and enable fellowship programs to provide time for research (clinical, basic science, or translational).
  • Promote mentorship of hematology trainees by outstanding faculty members.
  • Produce, on a yearly basis, clinician scientist candidates for academic positions.
  • Provide bridging funds for trainees who need more time to generate sufficient expertise to be competitive when applying for K award funding.

Support

The ASH Research Training Award for Fellows will grant up to six awards for MD fellows without biomedical PhDs and up to six awards to MDs with biomedical PhDs. Each recipient in these two groups of fellows will receive $70,000 for a one-year period. The Junior Investigator RTAF is for second- and third-year fellows (at the time of the award), and the Senior Investigator RTAF is for fourth- or fifth-year fellows (at the time of the award) who are not yet eligible for the ASH Scholar Awards (fellow category) in the United States or Canada.

The Research Training Award for Fellows is intended to be used primarily for salary support for the applicant. Salary includes benefits provided by the applicant's institution for up to 15 percent of the total award amount. Additionally, up to $5,000 of the award money may be allocated for research supplies and reagents, and up to $1,000 may be allocated for travel to the ASH annual meeting (no other meetings are eligible for this allocation). All recipients will also receive $1,000 outside of the award money to support attendance at the ASH annual meeting for the year following their award term. Each of the non-salary support portions of the proposed budget must be accompanied by a clear justification.

Awards will be activated on July 1 and conclude on June 30 of the following year. Monies cannot be used toward salary/benefits for the mentor or toward an institution's overhead or indirect costs. Payments will be made to the appropriate financial officer of the institution.

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Second Year of RTAF Support

Those who have received the RTAF can apply for a second year of funding for the year following the award. The request must be made in writing 9 months into the funded award period and be a joint letter from the awardee and his/her mentor describing what was done to meet career development objectives as outlined in the original RTAF application.

The letter should address the following:

  • Aims of the original grant application;
  • Progress made on these aims;
  • What will be performed during an additional year;
  • How an additional year of funding is necessary from a career development perspective;
  • Why continuing funding is needed, and why the awardee was denied other funding (if applicable);
  • Plans for future funding applications;
  • Show evidence of publications, or publications under review;
  • Provide comment from the Institutional leader justifying the need for a 2nd year of funding.

The request will be reviewed by the RTAF study section chair. Pending his/her approval, the recipient will be invited to re-submit an application.

Funding is available for up to four recipients for a second year of RTAF support.

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Timeline

Applications due (received by 11:59 PM PST)January 13, 2017
Finalists interviews by study section in Washington, DCApril 2017
Award notificationMay 2017
Award activationJuly 1, 2017

An email from ASH will be sent to the applicant within one business day of receiving the application to confirm receipt. If an email is not received, the applicant should notify ASH staff immediately by contacting the ASH Training Coordinator at training@hematology.org, or at 202-552-4928. Failure to notify ASH could result in the application not being reviewed.

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Eligibility Requirements

Eligibility will begin on the first day of fellowship and go until five years from that date, with exceptions made for leaves of absence. Assistant professors are not eligible to apply.

ASH Membership
RRTAF applicants are required to be members of ASH in good standing at the time of application, and for the duration of the RTAF program. If your 2017 dues have not been paid by 11:59 p.m., PST, January 13, 2017, your application will be deemed ineligible. If you are not currently a member, your ASH membership application must be pending at the time of the application date.

To verify your membership status, please log on to the membership section of the ASH website. If you need assistance with your username and password, please contact an ASH Customer Relations Representative at membership@hematology.org.

Application Requirements

Similar to a Young Investigators Award, ideal candidates for the RTAF award are applicants with promise for future academic research careers. Candidates without PhDs should have limited (not extensive) past research experience. Candidates, with or without PhDs, need not have completed a research project. RTAF is intended to support those who need protected time and more research experience. RTAF is broken into two levels of eligibility; a Junior award for those whose research has been initiated but no preliminary data has been collected; and a senior award for those whose project has been initiated and has data. The expectation is that RTAF awardees will become candidates for awards like the Scholar Award, which targets applicants with somewhat more extensive past research experience. In contrast to the RTAF award, the Scholar Award is a career development award that targets applicants with a more extensive past research experience and record of past research success (e.g., publications). Ideal recipients of the Scholar Award are those who have completed a project and anticipate becoming independent researchers by the end of the 2- to 3-year funding period.

Recipients of the RTAF must have completed their T32 training period (if on a T32), be in an approved ACGME program and have 75 percent protected time for research.

Applications for the 2017 award cycle must be received by 11:59 p.m., PST on January 13, 2017.

Junior Investigator Award
First and second-year fellows may apply to fund research in years two or three of fellowship. Eligible applicants must propose research focused on a hematologic condition (solid tumor projects are not eligible). A junior award is for those whose research has been initiated but no preliminary data has been collected.

At the time of application, the applicant must:

  • Possess an MD, DO, DO/PhD, or MD/PhD.
  • National Institute of Health employees are not eligible for this award.
  • Continue to maintain ASH membership and remain members in good standing of ASH for the duration of the RTAF award term.
  • Be a first or second-year fellow in an ACGME or RCPSC accredited hematology, hematology/oncology, or hematology-related fellowship program in the United States or Canada. Eligibility will begin on the first day of fellowship and go until five years from that date, with exceptions made for leaves of absence.
  • Assistant professors are not eligible to apply.
  • Plan to pursue an investigative career in hematology research.
  • Have clear and documented support of an established mentor. This person should have funding (funding may be NIH, federal, foundation, or private) or be recognized through national clinical leadership (if the project is clinical). The mentor must remain funded during the award period.
  • Have a mentor who is an ASH member at the time the application is submitted and remain members of ASH for the duration of the RTAF award term. If the mentor is not in a hematology related field then a supporting letter from an ASH member is required. (Additional mentors can be recommended by members of the study section).
  • Provide documented support from the program director for dedicated research time during the award period.
  • Secure a document from appropriate institutional leader(s) who has the authority to ensure that at least 75 percent of the applicant's full-time professional efforts will be devoted to research during the funded period.

At the time of the award (July 1) the applicant must:

  • Have less than five years of research.
  • Have completed one year of clinical training within a hematology, hematology/oncology, or hematology-related training program in the United States or Canada.
  • Be a second or third-year fellow in an ACGME or RCPSC accredited hematology, hematology/oncology, or hematology-related training program in the United States or Canada.
  • Continue to maintain ASH membership. Eligibility will begin on the first day of fellowship and go until five years from that date, with exceptions made for leaves of absence. Assistant professors are not eligible to apply.
  • Not have any other career-development funding during the award period, including but not limited to foundation and NIH career development, (K12, K23, K01 K 8, T32), ASCO YIA, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Clinical Scholar awards, etc.
  • The RTAF is to be the recipient's main source of salary support. In the event that the recipient's salary is not fully covered by the Research Training Award for Fellows, supplementary funding from non-career development awards or grants may be used to pay the balance of the recipient's salary.
  • Applicants who have been accepted in the Clinical Research Training Institute or the Translational Research Training in Hematology programs during the research period of the awarded project are not eligible for the RTAF.
  • Applicants who have accepted an ASH Scholar Award during the research period of the awarded project are not eligible for the RTAF.

Criteria for selection include:

  • A focus on hematology research.
  • The qualifications and experiences of the applicant. Factors to be considered include, but are not limited to, the potential for future independent clinical or laboratory investigation and commitment to a career in hematology research.
  • Quality of the mentor and the plan for mentor/applicant interaction and career development.
  • The significance, feasibility, and originality of the proposed hypothesis, research, and methodology.
  • Availability of institutional resources to support the proposed project.

Senior Investigator Award
Third and fourth-year fellows may apply to fund research in years four and five of fellowship. Eligible applicants must propose research focused on a hematologic condition (solid tumor projects are not eligible). A senior award is for those whose project has been initiated and has data. Eligibility will begin on the first day of fellowship and go until five years from that date, with exceptions made for leaves of absence. Assistant professors are not eligible to apply.

At the time of application, the applicant must:

  • Possess an MD, DO, DO/PhD, or MD/PhD.
  • National Institute of Health employees are not eligible for this award.
  • Continue to maintain ASH membership and remain members of ASH for the duration of the RTAF award term.
  • Be in the third or fourth-year of a hematology, hematology/oncology, or hematology-related fellowship in the United States or Canada.
  • Plan to pursue an investigative career in hematology research.
  • Have clear and documented support of a funded mentor (funding may be NIH, federal, foundation, or private) or have a mentor recognized through national clinical leadership (if the project is clinical). The mentor must remain funded during the award period.
  • Have a mentor who is an ASH member for the duration of the RTAF award term. If the research mentor is not in a hematology related field then a supporting letter from an ASH member is required. (Additional mentors can be recommended by members of the study section).
  • Provide documented support from the program director for dedicated research time during the award period.
  • Secure a document from appropriate institutional leaders that states that at least 75 percent of the applicant's full-time professional efforts will be devoted to research during the funded period.
  • Assistant professors are not eligible to apply.

At the time of the award (July 1) the applicant must:

  • Have completed two years of training within a hematology, hematology/oncology, or hematology-related training program in the United States or Canada.
  • Be a fourth or fifth-year trainee in a hematology, hematology/oncology, or hematology-related training program in the United States or Canada. Eligibility will begin on the first day of fellowship and go until five years from that date, with exceptions made for leaves of absence.
  • Continue to maintain ASH membership.
  • Not have any other career-development funding during the award period. Including but not limited to foundation and NIH career development (K12, K23, K01 K08, T32) ASCO YIA, Leukemia and Lymphoma Society Clinical Scholar awards, etc.
  • The RTAF is to be the recipients' main source of salary support. In the event that the recipient's salary is not fully covered by the Research Training Award for Fellows, supplementary funding from non-career development awards or grants may be used to pay the balance of the recipients' salary.
  • Applicants who have been accepted in the Clinical Research Training Institute or the Translational Research Training in Hematology programs during the research period of the awarded project are not eligible for the RTAF.
  • Applicants who have accepted an ASH Scholar Award during the research period of the awarded project are not eligible for the RTAF.

Criteria for selection include:

  • A focus on hematology research.
  • The qualifications and experiences of the applicant. Factors to be considered include, but are not limited to the potential for future independent investigation and commitment to a career in hematology research.
  • Quality of the mentor and the plan for mentor/applicant interaction and career development.
  • The significance, feasibility, and originality of the proposed hypothesis, research, and methodology.
  • Secure a document from appropriate institutional leaders that states that at least 75 percent of the applicant's full-time professional efforts will be devoted to research during the funded period.
  • Availability of institutional resources to support the proposed project.
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Required Documents

All applications must be submitted through an online awards module. The following documents will need to be uploaded in the module. Any form templates will be available on the module.

  1. Complete Application information, Budget, and Award Agreement Form
  2. The following documents must be formatted with 0.5" margins on all sides and a minimum font size of 12 points prior to submitting on the awards module.

  3. Project Narrative (4-page limit including references)
  4. The project narrative should include a detailed description of the proposed research study including information on the significance, originality, hypothesis, feasibility, and methodology. Also include a project timeline that contains specific details stating how the project can be completed within the award period.

  5. Career Development Plan (4-page limit)
  6. On institution letterhead, this document is a letter co-authored by the applicant and his/her research mentor detailing the applicant's career development plan, current and future academic and research career plans, plan for degree and non-degree earning courses, attendance at workshops, and plans for external grant submissions as well as the mentor's plan for mentor applicant interactions.

    Statements that address the following should be included: (1) description of the applicant's job and title during the award period; (2) description of the applicant's ideal job after fellowship; (3) where the proposed project is anticipated to lead; (4) statement describing career path to date; and (5) future career path and goals.

  7. Applicant NIH Biographical Sketch
  8. The biosketch must contain a list of all grants that provide salary support. Grant dollar amounts and the associated percent of salary covered (active and pending) must be included.

  9. Research Mentor's NIH Biographical Sketch
  10. If the applicant's project has co-mentors, each mentor should submit a biosketch resulting in TWO biosketches. The biosketch must contain a list of all grants that provide salary support. Grant dollar amounts and the associated percent of salary covered (active and pending) must be included.

  11. Research Mentor's Letter of Support (4-page limit)
  12. The letter should include statements on what the mentor(s) will do to support the applicant and the project and why the proposed project should be funded. If the applicant's project has co-mentors, only ONE statement of support should be included (4-page limit on institutional letterhead). The statement should be written, and signed, by both mentors.

    • ASH Member Letter of Support (only necessary if research mentor is not a hematologist and not an ASH member; 1-page limit)
      If the applicant's research mentor is not a hematologist and not an ASH member, please attach a letter of support from a current ASH member who is familiar with the applicant's and mentor's work. Any research mentors who are hematologists are required to be active ASH members and will not be eligible for a letter of support.
  13. Institutional Commitment Letter from Training Program Director (2-page limit)
  14. This letter must be separate from the research mentor letter of support (even if the research mentor and training program director are the same person). On institution letterhead, this letter must confirm the availability of institutional resources to support the proposed project. In addition, the training program director must indicate that 75 percent (minimum) of the applicant's time will be dedicated to research. This letter should also include a statement of anticipated clinical responsibilities for the applicant during the award period. Additionally, the letter should describe the salary support resources for all of the program's trainees (to include institutional funding, NIH training grants, etc) and identify the source(s) of the applicant's other salary support if he/she is a recipient of this award. Finally, the letter should document the institution's financial need for this award.

  15. Company Letter (optional) (1-page limit)
  16. If an applicant has a project that involves drugs, reagents, etc. from an individual company then a letter will need to be submitted from the drug company. This letter will indicate that the company is supplying the drugs, reagents, etc. to the applicant.

Please note: Any application which does not follow the stated requirements, includes additional documents outside of the required documents, is not formatted correctly, is lacking information, has incorrect information, or is lacking required documents as outlined, will be deemed ineligible and will not be reviewed by the study section.

There are no appeals, or consideration for additional or further review once an application has been determined to be ineligible.

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Finalist Interview

Ten to twelve finalists will be selected to be interviewed by the RTAF Study Section for each category of the RTAF application, those with PhD degrees and those without PhD degrees. All finalists for the award must be available for face-to-face interviews with the Study Section. The interviews will focus on determining the applicants' commitment to hematology and potential for success.

Applicants doing research in the same department of an institution are eligible to apply; however, no more than one applicant from any one department at any one institution will be selected. In this context different departments include Internal Medicine, Pediatrics, Pathology, etc.

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Terms and Conditions

As a condition of acceptance of the Research Training Award for Fellows, it is required that:

  • The funds awarded must be used for the research project specified in the application submitted to American Society of Hematology (ASH) in strict compliance with the budget included with the application, or any subsequent budget approved by the Society.
  • The RTAF is to be the recipient's main source of salary support. In the event that the recipient's salary is not fully covered by the Research Training Award for Fellows, supplementary funding from non-career development awards or grants may be used to pay the balance of the recipients' salary. Monies cannot be used toward salary/benefits for the mentor or toward an institution's overhead or indirect costs.

All awards will be activated on July 1, 2017. The award concludes on June 30, 2018. Payment will be made to the appropriate financial officer for the institution as indicated on the proposed budget form. The institution will be responsible for distributing the funds to the institution's financial official in accordance with the budget submitted with the application.

Research award funds cannot be deferred and are non-transferable.

Change Requests
In the event the awardee transfers to another institution during the funding period, continuation of the funding at the new institution may be allowed with the prior approval of the Society. To obtain permission, the awardee must make a request in writing to the Society ninety (90) days before the transfer occurs.

The Research Training Award for Fellows is primarily for salary support; however, up to $5,000 may be used for supplies and $1,000 for travel to the ASH Annual Meeting. Any requests to reallocate monies from the original budget must still fall into these funding categories.

All transfer requests must be sent to the attention of the Training Manager at ASH Headquarters.

Requests for budget reallocation will be reviewed by the Chair of the Research Training Award for Fellows Study Section, the Chair of the Committee on Training Programs and if needed the ASH Treasurer. The budget reallocation will be evaluated based on the following criteria:

  • completeness of request
  • reasons for request
  • assurance that progress is being made in the research project
  • submission of request in advance of the change

Unused Funds
All ASH funding not spent by the end of the award term must be returned to the Society within ninety (90) days of submitting the final report. A check made out to the American Society of Hematology must be sent along with a copy of the final report to the Training Manager at ASH Headquarters.

Award Reporting

Final Report
The Research Training Award for Fellows recipients are required to submit a final written report (not to exceed 4 pages) and to complete an ASH survey within 30 days of the end of the award period. The report is to detail how the funds were used over the award period, and should include a summary of the work performed and reprints of publications written by the fellow during the term of the award. This report must be sent to ASH Headquarters to the attention of the Training Manager.

The recipients will be expected to cite support from the American Society of Hematology in any publication describing research conducted during the period of the award.

The final reports are evaluated by the ASH Awards Subcommittee. At times it may be necessary for the committee to follow up with recipients after the final report has been submitted. Research Training Award for Fellows recipients are responsible for being responsive to these requests.

Failure to submit the final report will render the applicant ineligible for the $1,000 travel award (applied to the ASH annual meeting for the year following the award period) as well as other future ASH funding.

Program Evaluation
The American Society of Hematology's mission is to further the understanding, diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disorders affecting the blood, bone marrow and the immunologic, hemostatic, and vascular systems by promoting research, clinical care, education, training and advocacy in hematology. In order to measure the effectiveness of the ASH Research Training Awards for Fellows program to support this mission, the Society will conduct an annual, comprehensive review of the program and its participants. This cannot be done without the assistance of all award recipients. Therefore, all current recipients are required to respond to surveys sent at the end of each year and all past recipients are required to respond to the Society's requests for information on their career progress following the active award.

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Questions

Questions regarding this application and the ASH Research Training Award for Fellows should be directed to the ASH Training Manager, at training@hematology.org or 202-776-0544. back to top