Pre-Doctoral Fellowships

AFPE Pre-Doctoral Research Fellowship in Pharmaceutical Sciences 

FAQ’s about applying!



The primary goal of the AFPE Pre-Doctoral Research Fellowship program is to positively impact patient and public health by supporting high performing students who possess the skill and aptitude to become outstanding scientists and leaders in the pharmaceutical industry, academia, and the government/nonprofit sectors. 

AFPE also offers the following fellowships:

AFPE Fellowship Eligibility Requirements:

  1. The AFPE recipient must be registered as a full-time student in a Ph.D degree program in the pharmaceutical sciences administered by, or officially affiliated with, an accredited U.S. school or college of pharmacy.
  2. Students enrolled in a Ph.D. or joint Pharm D./Ph.D. program and have completed the equivalent of 3 full semesters of graduate credit toward the Ph.D. and will be awarded the Ph.D. degree within 3 additional years may be eligible for a pre-doctoral fellowship.
  3. They must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.


Selection Criteria:

Each application is reviewed by at least two scientific reviewers. The reviewers assess the applications using the following rubric:

  • Research Plan and Experience (50%) 
  •  Academic Performance (35%) 
  • Leadership and Character (15%) 

Additionally, successful applicants are judged to demonstrate the following: 

  • Superior academic achievement 
  • Exceptional basic science knowledge 
  • High potential and commitment to becoming an outstanding pharmaceutical scientist 
  • Strong leadership experienced 
  • Prior research experience 
  • Strong laboratory skills relevant to their discipline 
  • Honorable personal character and ethics 
  •  Exhibit strong interpersonal and collaborative skills 
  • Strong written and oral communication skills 
  • A compelling, novel, relevant and feasible research proposal that advances science and ultimately improves patient and public health 

Please note: In the previous award cycle, the average GPA of awardee recipients was 3.8.  86% of awardees from the previous award cycle had one or more publications. 

Application Instructions:

Each application will contain:

  • Completed Part 1, intent to apply
  • Completed Part 2
  • 3 faculty recommendation forms
  • Official graduate transcript



  • Both Part 1 and Part 2 of the application and all recommendations MUST be completed using the SmarterSelect links.


    1.  Link to Part 1 will be posted on AFPE’s website and emailed to AFPE’s faculty contact list ahead of the application opening. 
    2. The link to Part 2  will automatically be sent to the applicant upon submission of Part 1. 
    3. The student will need to create one login for Part 1 and Part 2, and the recommender will receive a link to complete the recommendation form. 
  1. The transcript may be sent via paper mail or electronically, however, it must be sent by the university (i.e. a credentialed PDF or sealed envelope with the registrar’s signature would be fine, a scan from the student or unsealed document would not.

Renewals:  If you were awarded an AFPE Pre-Doctoral Fellowship in 2023 and wish to re-apply, please email Ellen Woods at for the renewal link. 

Fellowship Details and Requirements: 

  • The Fellowship term begins September 1 of the award year and runs through August 31st of the following year. 
  • Stipend Details:
    • The 1st half of the stipend is disbursed in September of the award year, and the 2nd half is disbursed in February of the following year
    • The Fellowship stipend may be used for a purpose decided by the awardee and college that will enable the student to make progress in their pursuit of the Ph.D., e.g., student stipend, laboratory supplies, books, materials, travel, etc. None of the funds shall be used for indirect costs by the institution. Further details will be provided to Fellows in the contract between the Student, University, and AFPE
  • If selected, student must provide: 
    • Photo and information for marketing in print and digital publications
    • Accounting report indicating how the stipend was used. 
    • Progress or final report about the research project
    • Acknowledgment of AFPE’s support in publications resulting from the studies carried out during the period of their AFPE Fellowship. 
    • Information on their employment and the current address where they may be reached following receipt of the Ph.D. degree. 
    • The student must have a LinkedIn profile and connect to AFPE 

Funds provided for AFPE Fellowships are awards from the American Foundation for Pharmaceutical Education. The Foundation derives its income from voluntary contributions from individual, pharmaceutical and related industries, and foundations. The Foundation currently accepts no funds from governmental sources.