Extramural Fellowships

Extramural fellowships foster successful scientific careers by distinguishing the most meritorious research projects and demonstrating the recipient's skill and resourcefulness in securing support. The Graduate Division strongly encourages you to apply for these prestigious awards.


Eligibility, support, and application procedures vary by fellowship. Consult with UCSF graduate program directors, administrators, graduate advisers, and the Graduate Division as you prepare applications. Extramural fellowships that provide a stipend and/or tuition and requires the institution (UCSF) to accept the funding on the student's behalf, are sometimes administered through the Graduate Division. If the fellowship provides research funding only, it will be administered through the student's graduate program or their department. Before you begin applying for any external funding opportunities, please take a moment to review the application steps.

Identifying Sources and Types of Funding

  • Read the frequent fellowship opportunity emails sent to the UCSF Graduate Student listserv
  • Searchable Databases
  • Government Agencies and Charitable Foundations
  • Professional Associations
  • Your own professional network (PI, colleagues here and at other institutions)

Fellowship Search Databases

Usually free to use, these online databases offer various ways to search for appropriate fellowships. For the best results, search more than one database using several parameters. Here are some good places to start.

*Training for students and postdocs in using the Pivot funding opportunities database is offered monthly by the Campus Library. See the Library events calendar for upcoming sessions.

Major Funders

Some of the largest fellowship programs are run by government agencies (such as NSF and the Department of Homeland Security) and charitable foundations. Here is a partial list of some of the foundations and government agencies that have provided funding for UCSF students in the past.

Search online, but also talk with your faculty mentor about sources of support for your field of research; mentors can be a great source of information about funding agencies and professional associations that support research in your area. Some of the major professional associations are: