Early Career Awards

Program Summary
Research Interests
Deadlines 2016
Budget Guidelines
Application Process
Success Rates

Program Summary

The Fund recognizes that young investigators may find it difficult to remain in pediatric research because of a lack of funding. Therefore, the purpose of this program is to encourage the development of medical research in child health by awarding small grants to new researchers, helping them gain a foothold in this important area. The Fund will make up to 30 awards total with two funding cycles (15 awards each).

Research Interests

The Fund is open to a variety of research topics important to children's health. Both incidence and severity are considered when determining the significance of a problem being studied.
In the Early Career Award Program, the Fund is particularly interested in applicants that show great potential to impact that field of children's health through medical research. Both an applicant's aptitude and inclination toward research are considered. The quality of the mentor and the mentoring relationship are also considered to be important predictors of success.


Those eligible to apply include: 
1. Physicians who are in a residency/fellowship training program, or who completed that program no more than one year before the date of submission of the Concept Paper.
2. Post-doctoral researchers who received the doctoral level degree no more than three years prior to the date of submission of the Concept Paper.
A new investigator who holds a National Institutes of Health (NIH) K award (including a K12 award) or a Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA) is not eligible to apply for the Early Career Award.
Each project needs to be under the guidance of a mentor. The qualifications and experience of the mentor will be considered in the evaluation of the application. A mentor may have only one Thrasher Research Fund Early Career Awardee at a time.
There are no restrictions with regard to citizenship. The Fund is open to applications from institutions both inside and outside the United States.

2015 & 2016 Deadlines

2016 Spring CYCLE

Concept Submission Deadline: March 15, 2016 at noon MST
Acceptance/Rejection of Concept Paper: By April 1, 2016
Proposal Submission Deadline: May 2, 2016 at noon MST
Notification of Awards: On or before June 17, 2016

2016 Fall CYCLE

Concept Submission Deadline: September 9, 2016 at noon MST
Acceptance/Rejection of Concept Paper: By September 30, 2016
Proposal Submission Deadline: October 28, 2016 at noon MST
Notification of Awards: On or before December 16, 2016

Budge​t Guidelines

The grant amount is based on the actual budgetary needs of the project, with a maximum of $25,000 in direct costs for the entire grant. The duration of the project can be up to two years. Indirect costs of no more than 7% of direct costs will be paid on Early Career Award Program grants. Up to $12,500 in total of the proposed budget may be used for salary (including fringe) of the new researcher. Funds not needed for salary are to be used for research supplies or other research-related expenses.
The cost of attending one conference is allowed for the applicant to report findings resulting from Thrasher-supported research. Such travel costs may not exceed $2,000.
Requests for purchase of major equipment (items >$4,000) are discouraged and rarely funded.


A Thrasher Early Career Award project does not need to be fully encapsulated within the $25,000 award provided by Thrasher. It is common for other sources of funding to contribute to the successful completion of a research project, such as funds from the mentor's lab. Demonstration of sufficient funds to complete the project is a consideration for the Fund's Advisory Committee.

Application Process

The Fund uses a two-step process for the Early Career Awards. The first step is the submission of a Concept Paper. Applicants whose concepts generally fit with the current priorities of the Fund are invited to submit a full proposal. Full proposals are reviewed by the Fund's Advisory Committee.
**The NIH revised its biographical sketch template and instructions in early 2015.  The Fund has moved to using this new template.

Success Rates

Spring 2014 Cycle

Next Funding Cycle Deadline
Concept Submission Deadline:     September 9, 2016 (noon MST)