Education Awards and Scholarships


Explore education award and scholarship resources and opportunities from the American College of Rheumatology, Rheumatology Research Foundation, National Institutes of Health, and other organizations.

Pediatric Rheumatology Residents Program

The program introduces and motivates pediatric residents to the possibility of specialty training in pediatric rheumatology at an early period in their residency. See information about the Pediatric Rheumatology Residents Program.

Fellows-In-Training Scholarships for ACR Meetings

See the FIT Scholarship Eligibility Guide for a complete list of eligibility requirements and benefits for each meeting.

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The ACR provides scholarships to attend several educational meetings. The FIT Focus e-newsletter contains details when scholarships become available. Applicants must be an ACR fellow-in-training member in good standing.

Funding for fellows-in-training scholarships is made possible in part by the American College of Rheumatology Fellows Educational Fund. Scholarships are reportable payments to physicians under the Physicians Payment Sunshine Act.

ACR Convergence exposes fellows in training to 450+ sessions and offers opportunities for professional development, networking, and access to the latest rheumatology research and clinical application.

Winter Rheumatology Symposium provides current, practical clinical information on the diagnosis and management of patients with rheumatic and immune disorders.

State-of-the-Art Clinical Symposium presents a range of content delivered by key opinion leaders in areas such as therapeutic developments, recent research findings, and scientific advances.

Pediatric Rheumatology Symposium occurs every three years and includes lectures, table topics, oral abstracts, and poster presentations in clinical, basic science, and educational training related to pediatric rheumatology.

Rheumatology Research Workshop promotes interaction between young and established investigators to foster collaboration and career mentoring. Abstract submission and acceptance are required to receive the scholarship.

Rheumatology Research Foundation Award & Grants

The Rheumatology Research Foundation is the largest private funding source of rheumatology training and research programs in the United States. The Foundation offers a wide range of awards and grants aimed at recruiting the brightest young minds to the field, providing quality education and training, and supporting essential research that will lead to major advances in treating patients.

See Rheumatology Research Foundation funding opportunities.

Not sure where to start? Find out which award is right for you.

National Institutes of Health (NIH)

The NIH is the nation’s medical research agency – supporting scientist studies that turn discovery into health. NIH awards are classified into “series.” Award mechanisms and qualifications within a specific series tend to be similar. Below is a summary of what is available through the Office of Extramural Research. Keep in mind that not all institutes offer all the award mechanisms listed.

Training and Fellowship Awards (T and F series)

Career Development Awards (K Series)
K awards provide support for senior postdoctoral fellows or faculty-level candidates to promote the career development of specific groups of individuals based on their past training and career stage. Below are common K award mechanisms.

See the comprehensive K Series list.

Research Awards (R Series)
Research grants are for conducting original research projects. Awards range from small grants (R03) to large RO1 projects with budgets up to $500,000 per year or more (with permission from NIH). Below are common R award mechanisms.

See the comprehensive R Series list.

Program Project/Center Grants (P Series)
Program project/center grants are large, multi-project efforts that generally include a diverse array of research activities. NIH institutes and centers issue funding opportunity announcements to indicate their interest in funding this type of program. Below are common P award mechanisms.

See the comprehensive P Series list.
  • P01: Research Program Project- supports a broadly based multidisciplinary or multifaceted research program that has a specific major objective. The concept of a program project grant is that projects closely related to a central theme can be conducted more effectively and efficiently through a coordinated collaborative or multidisciplinary approach that utilizes common resources, facilities, and instruments.
  • P30: Core Research Center Grant- core facilities are shared resources that enhance productivity or in other ways benefit a group of investigators working in areas related to the stated goals of the core center. The pilot and feasibility program provides modest support for new initiatives or feasibility studies for established or new investigators who are engaged in research of direct relevance to the core center. A core center must be an identifiable organizational unit either within a single university medical center or representing a consortium of cooperating institutions that includes an affiliated university. Close cooperation, communication, and collaboration among all involved personnel of all professional disciplines are the ultimate objectives of the core center.
  • P50: Specialized Center of Research (SCORs) - expedites development and application of new knowledge of specific importance to diseases within the mission of the institute. A SCOR program is intended as a mechanism to focus on the human disease.
  • P60: Multidisciplinary Clinical Research Center (MCRC)- supports a full range of outstanding multidisciplinary clinical research on arthritis, musculoskeletal and skin diseases. Each MCRC is organized around a methodology core and will be expected to include a minimum of three highly meritorious projects encompassing clinical research drawing from two or more clinical approaches.

NIH Loan Repayment Programs
In exchange for a two-year commitment to qualified research funded by a domestic nonprofit organization or U.S. federal, state, or local government entity, NIH will repay up to $35,000 per year of your qualified educational debt. Loan repayment benefits are in addition to the institutional salary you receive for your research. See the electronic application, application guidelines, and more information on these programs on the NIH Loan Repayment Program website.

Requests for Applications and Requests for Proposals
The NIH often has certain initiatives and products that they would like to see accomplished or produced. In this situation, institutes will offer a Request for Application (RFA) for a grant application or a Request for Proposal (RFP) for contract proposals. Potential applicants should frequently consult the home pages of each institute that may be applicable to them for these types of program announcements. A word of caution: often, the turn-around time from announcement to date of submission is very short.

Other Organizations

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality - find policies and procedures, grant announcements, contract solicitations, special initiatives, call for partners, small business innovation research, research dissertations, training, and career development opportunities.

Alliance for Lupus Research - the world’s largest private funder of lupus research, committing almost $100M to date. ALR aims to find better treatments and ultimately prevent and cure systemic lupus by supporting bio-medical research.

American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association - dedicated to the eradication of autoimmune diseases and the alleviation of suffering and the socioeconomic impact of autoimmunity through fostering and facilitating collaboration in the areas of education, public awareness, research, and patient service in an effective, ethical, and efficient manner.

American Diabetes Association - the mission is to prevent and cure diabetes and improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes. The ADA’s grant program offers project-based funding in a variety of award categories: research, development, training, collaborative co-support, and targeted request for applications.

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation - the leading global organization funding type 1 diabetes (T1D) research. JDRF’s goal is to progressively remove the impact of T1D from people’s lives until we achieve a world without T1D. JDRF collaborates with a wide spectrum of partners and is the only organization with the scientific resources, policy influence, and a working plan to better treat, prevent, and eventually cure T1D.

Lupus Research Institute - dedicated to novel research in lupus and clinical innovations. The LRI offers two opportunities for scientists to apply for funding to support their work – the Distinguished Innovator Awards and Novel Research Grants.

Lupus Foundation of America - offers research grants, fellowships, and special awards for investigators to pursue research at many levels. Research grants are available for tenure-track investigators. Fellowships are available for students and medical school graduates. Special awards are available for Young Investigator Prize and Lifetime Achievement Award candidates.

National Multiple Sclerosis Society - provides grant funding, tools, and information resources to support the brightest scientists and physicians exploring questions with the goal of stopping MS, restoring function, and ending MS forever. The MS Society offers various funding opportunities and resources to support MS investigators at every stage of their careers.

Scleroderma Research Foundation - pursues opportunities to expand its research program to advance understanding of the pathogenesis of scleroderma and promote the design, development, and pilot testing of hypothesis-driven innovative therapeutic approaches. The SRF encourages applications from scientists who have not previously worked on scleroderma, as well as those with substantial ongoing scleroderma-focused effort.

Sjogren’s Syndrome Foundation - strives to foster research that will have the greatest potential impact on Sjogren’s patients, ensuring new therapeutics are developed and a is cure found. The SSF Research Grant Program places a high priority on both clinical and basic scientist research into the cause, prevention, detection, treatment, and cure of Sjogren’s, with support provided to investigators at early career level from student to junior investigator to senior leader.

U.S. Government - central source for information about all competitive grant opportunities through Federal grant-making agencies.

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