NIH logo
Research and Training Opportunities at the National Institutes of Health, Department of Health and Human Services
Home  >  Postdoctoral Training  >  Postdoc Opportunities  >  NGSRF
NIH National Graduate Student Research Festival
[Currently not open for applications]



The NIH National Graduate Student Research Festival (NGSRF) is an annual two-day event held on the main NIH campus in Bethesda, MD. This year’s Festival, to be held on September 11 and 12, will introduce 200 advanced graduate students in the sciences to the NIH Intramural Research Program (IRP) with the aim of recruiting them to do postdoctoral training at the NIH.

The NIH IRP is the world's largest institution focused exclusively on biomedical research. More than 1250 investigators work in laboratories located in Bethesda, Baltimore, and Frederick, MD; Research Triangle Park, NC; Phoenix, AZ; Detroit, MI; and Hamilton, MT. The 240 beds of the new Mark O. Hatfield Clinical Research Center in Bethesda are devoted to clinical research. The IRP is particularly proud of the opportunities it provides to do translational and interdisciplinary research, its extensive resources, and the collaborative atmosphere.

Festival Fact Sheet


Two hundred advanced graduate students (individuals who received or will receive their doctoral degrees between June 2008 and October 2009) of any nationality who are currently studying in the U.S. have been invited to attend.

NOTE: International scholars should be aware that, in general, the NIH supports only J-1 visas for postdoctoral trainees.


The two-day Festival includes:

  • Poster presentations by Festival participants.
  • Plenary sessions that address the NIH and how it works, resources for postdoctoral fellows at the NIH, and experiences of former NIH postdoctoral fellows.
  • Scientific sessions highlighting research in the NIH IRP.
  • Tours of the NIH campus and specialized research and clinical facilities.
  • Interviews with NIH investigators interested in hiring postdoctoral fellows.
  • Informal opportunities to interact with current NIH trainees.
You can view the 2008 agenda here. [PDF, 13 KB]


The NIH is known for awarding grants to universities and institutions around the world. The Intramural Research Program is less well known. The Festival was conceived to publicize the exciting postdoctoral research opportunities available at the NIH. It has proven to be an effective mechanism for allowing NIH investigators to interview outstanding postdoctoral candidates face-to-face.


The Festival is held on the main NIH campus in Bethesda, MD. Investigators at off-campus locations participate via satellite connection. Participants are housed in Bethesda, within walking distance or a brief subway ride of the NIH. The NIH covers the cost of participant travel to and from the NIH and shared hotel accommodations. Meals are provided.


The 2008 NIH National Graduate Student Research Festival will take place on September 11 and 12.


The online application was available from early April to May 15. Applications were judged by NIH investigators based on an abstract describing the applicant's research, applicant curriculum vitae, a letter of recommendation from the applicant's dissertation advisor, a cover letter from the applicant, and goodness of fit between the applicant's interests and the mission of the NIH. This year, 819 applications were received.

Home  |  Postdoctoral Training  |  Postdoc Opportunities  |  NGSRF

Questions or comments regarding this site? Contact us.

Page last revised on July 17, 2008 (sva)