NIDA Scientific Workforce and Research Diversity Programs, Initiatives, and Funding Opportunities

Underrepresented researchers face a number of challenges that influence their success in obtaining independent support from NIDA, the NIH, and other federal funding agencies. Some of these challenges include limited/poor mentoring, lack of adequate knowledge of NIH funding opportunities and processes, limited access to novel high priority research projects and design, low publication records, and limited professional networking to successfully bridge to the next career level.  Collectively, these factors impact NIDA's efforts to retain underrepresented investigators conducting addiction research and further develop the research infrastructure within this community. NIDA has implemented several key early stage outreach programs which play a vital role at recruiting, training, and retaining researchers from underrepresented backgrounds in order to develop and support their research careers. In addition, NIDA has a Diversity Consortium that includes staff across NIDA Scientific Divisions and Offices. These groups review applications from various programs including: NIDA Summer Research ProgramNIDA Diversity Supplement Program, and the NIDA Diversity Scholars Network.

High School and Undergraduates

NIDA Summer Research Internship Program
The NIDA Summer Research Internship Program is designed for undergraduate students from diverse backgrounds to experience substance abuse and addiction research in the biomedical, behavioral, clinical and social sciences areas. Through this program, students age 18 years and older are introduced to the field of drug abuse and addiction research by participating in research internships with NIDA funded scientists at universities across the United States.
Read about the NIDA Summer Research Internship Program.


Summer Training Program for Underrepresented Populations Available at NIDA’s Research Campus in Baltimore, Maryland
Students in high school, college, graduate, or professional school are eligible for on-campus summer programs at NIDA Intramural Research Program (IRP). During this program, most of your time will be spent working with a scientist on a research project. The Recruitment and Training Program for Underrepresented Populations (RTURP) provides paid training opportunities for students who are interested in the scientific basis of drug abuse and are from an underrepresented group.
Read more about how to apply and other summer internships at the NIDA Baltimore campus.


NIH Summer Research Experience Program for High School, College Students, and Science Teachers (R25)
Provides high quality summer research experiences for high school and college students, and for science teachers via institutional research education grants. These grant programs must focus on substance use/abuse/addiction and are expected to: help attract young students to careers in science; provide opportunities for college students to gain valuable research experience to help prepare them for graduate school; and enhance the skills of science teachers and enable them to more effectively communicate the nature of the scientific process to their students. The grant programs should also contribute to enhancing overall science literacy. Participants are selected and appointed to the program by the grantee institution. Funding Announcement.
See current NIDA-funded Summer Research Experience R25s on NIH RePORTER.

Postbaccalaureate

Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
Program Directors/Principal Investigators holding specific types of research grants (see the FOA for activity codes) can apply for administrative supplements to improve the diversity of the research workforce by recruiting and supporting students, post-doctorates, and eligible investigators from diverse backgrounds, including those from groups that have been shown to be underrepresented in health-related research. This supplement opportunity is also available to PDs/PIs of research grants who are or become disabled and need additional support to accommodate their disability in order to continue to work on the research project. Administrative supplements must support work within the scope of the original project.
Read more about this supplement opportunity.
FOA: PA-21-071


For all HEAL grantees:
Notice of Special Interest to Encourage Eligible NIH HEAL Initiative Awardees to Apply for PA-21-071: Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
This funding opportunity is for HEAL Initiative awardees to apply for diversity supplements (PA-21-071). The goal of this FOA is to diversify the scientific workforce at institutions by increasing the participation of individuals from groups identified as underrepresented in health-related research and preparing them to become independently funded researchers. Contact Michele Rankin, Ph.D. prior to submission of an application by phone (301-480-3832) or by email (rankinm@mail.nih.gov) to discuss important eligibility, timeline considerations, and HEAL specific requirements.
FOA: NOT-NS-20-107

Graduate Student

Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
Program Directors/Principal Investigators holding specific types of research grants (see the FOA for activity codes) can apply for administrative supplements to improve the diversity of the research workforce by recruiting and supporting students, post-doctorates, and eligible investigators from diverse backgrounds, including those from groups that have been shown to be underrepresented in health-related research. This supplement opportunity is also available to PDs/PIs of research grants who are or become disabled and need additional support to accommodate their disability in order to continue to work on the research project. Administrative supplements must support work within the scope of the original project.
Read more about this supplement opportunity.
FOA: PA-21-071

For all HEAL grantees:
Notice of Special Interest to Encourage Eligible NIH HEAL Initiative Awardees to Apply for PA-21-071: Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
This funding opportunity is for HEAL Initiative awardees to apply for diversity supplements (PA-21-071). The goal of this FOA is to diversify the scientific workforce at institutions by increasing the participation of individuals from groups identified as underrepresented in health-related research and preparing them to become independently funded researchers. Contact Michele Rankin, Ph.D. prior to submission of an application by phone (301-480-3832) or by email (rankinm@mail.nih.gov) to discuss important eligibility, timeline considerations, and HEAL specific requirements.
FOA: NOT-NS-20-107

NIDA Diversity Supplement Professional Development Workshop
Each year, NIDA hosts an annual two-day Diversity Supplement Workshop to bring together current NIDA Diversity Supplement recipients at the predoctoral, postdoctoral, and early investigator levels. Participants meet and network with NIDA program staff, senior officials, and other investigators. This workshop is a great opportunity for supplement recipients to receive critical guidance on pursuing funding opportunities and how to transition to independent research careers.
Read about the workshop.

Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards (NRSA) for Individual Predoctoral Fellowships to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Parent F31 - Diversity)
The Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Awards for Individual Predoctoral Fellows (F31) to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research provides support for research training leading to a Ph.D. or equivalent research degree. Through this award program, promising predoctoral students will obtain individualized, mentored research training from outstanding faculty sponsors while conducting well-defined research projects in scientific health-related fields relevant to the missions of the participating NIH Institutes and Centers. The proposed mentored research training is expected to enhance the individual's potential to develop into a productive, independent research scientist.
FOA: PA-21-052

NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Advancement in Neuroscience (D-SPAN) Award (F99/K00)
The purpose of the NIH Blueprint Diversity Specialized Predoctoral to Postdoctoral Advancement in Neuroscience (D-SPAN) Award is to support a pathway across career stages for exemplary graduate students from diverse backgrounds underrepresented in neuroscience research. This two-phase award will facilitate completion of the doctoral dissertation and transition of talented graduate students to strong neuroscience research postdoctoral positions. It will also provide career development opportunities relevant to their long-term career goal of becoming independent neuroscience researchers.

NIDA Diversity Scholars Travel Awards
NIDA Diversity Scholars Travel Awards are offered to graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and early-state investigators conducting substance abuse and addiction research. The monetary travel awards help with the cost of attending national scientific conferences that open doors for networking, presenting posters or oral talks, as well as other career development opportunities.
Read more about the Travel Awards.

Postdoctoral Level

Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
Program Directors/Principal Investigators holding specific types of research grants (see the FOA for activity codes) can apply for administrative supplements to improve the diversity of the research workforce by recruiting and supporting students, post-doctorates, and eligible investigators from diverse backgrounds, including those from groups that have been shown to be underrepresented in health-related research. This supplement opportunity is also available to PDs/PIs of research grants who are or become disabled and need additional support to accommodate their disability in order to continue to work on the research project. Administrative supplements must support work within the scope of the original project.
Read more about this supplement opportunity.
FOA: PA-21-071

For all HEAL grantees:
Notice of Special Interest to Encourage Eligible NIH HEAL Initiative Awardees to Apply for PA-21-071: Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
This funding opportunity is for HEAL Initiative awardees to apply for diversity supplements (PA-21-071). The goal of this FOA is to diversify the scientific workforce at institutions by increasing the participation of individuals from groups identified as underrepresented in health-related research and preparing them to become independently funded researchers. Contact Michele Rankin, Ph.D. prior to submission of an application by phone (301-480-3832) or by email (rankinm@mail.nih.gov) to discuss important eligibility, timeline considerations, and HEAL specific requirements.
FOA: NOT-NS-20-107

NIDA Diversity Supplement Professional Development Workshop
Each year, NIDA hosts an annual two-day Diversity Supplement Workshop to bring together current NIDA Diversity Supplement recipients at the predoctoral, postdoctoral, and early investigator levels. Participants meet and network with NIDA program staff, senior officials, and other investigators. This workshop is a great opportunity for supplement recipients to receive critical guidance on pursuing funding opportunities and how to transition to independent research careers.
Read about the workshop.

NIDA Diversity Scholars Network (NDSN)
The NDSN is a competitive, rigorous, and comprehensive program aimed at enhancing the funding success of underrepresented early-stage investigators conducting substance abuse and addiction research. The program is intended for postdocs and early-stage investigators who have not received an NIH R01 or equivalent level grant.  The NDSN program consists of two separate meetings with an interim application development period to assist scholars in applying for and receiving NIH career development awards and research grants.
Read more about the network.

Maximizing Opportunities for Scientific and Academic Independent Careers (MOSAIC) Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity (K99/R00 - Independent Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
The purpose of the MOSAIC Postdoctoral Career Transition Award is to support a cohort of career, independent investigators from diverse backgrounds conducting research in NIH mission areas. The long-term goal of this program is to enhance diversity in the biomedical research workforce. The program is designed to facilitate a timely transition of promising postdoctoral researchers from diverse backgrounds from their mentored, postdoctoral research positions to independent, tenure-track or equivalent faculty positions at research-intensive institutions.

More information on the MOSAIC program can be found here: MOSAIC Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity (K99/R00)

BRAIN Initiative Advanced Postdoctoral Career Transition Award to Promote Diversity (K99/R00 Independent)
The BRAIN Initiative K99/R00 award is designed to improve the skills needed to progress from postdoctoral training to junior faculty and to increase workforce diversity in research areas supported by the BRAIN Initiative, as highlighted in BRAIN 2025: A Scientific Vision (including multidisciplinary areas at the interface of neuroscience and single-cell multiomics, neurotechnologies, bioengineering, computer science, statistics, mathematics, physics, chemistry and neuroethics).

Eligible individuals are citizens or permanent residents from nationally underrepresented groups with no more than five years of postdoctoral research experience. Women are considered eligible candidates for this diversity program.

For a list of prior awardees https://braininitiative.nih.gov/brain-programs/training/k99r00-awardees.

More information on The BRAIN Initiative training opportunities: The Brain Initiative.

For questions on BRAIN K99/R00 applications and research proposals, please contact: Olivier Berton, NIDA Program Director, Olivier.berton@nih.gov.

BRAIN Initiative Fellows: Ruth L. Kirschstein National Research Service Award (NRSA) Individual Postdoctoral Fellowship (F32)
The purpose of the BRAIN Initiative Fellows (F32) program is to enhance the research training of promising postdoctorates, early in their postdoctoral training period, who have the potential to become productive investigators in research areas that will advance the goals of the BRAIN Initiative. Applications are encouraged in any research area that is aligned with the BRAIN Initiative, including neuroethics. Applicants are expected to propose research training in an area that clearly complements their predoctoral research. Formal training in analytical tools appropriate for the proposed research is expected to be an integral component of the research training plan.

In order to maximize the training potential of the F32 award, this program encourages applications from individuals who have not yet completed their terminal doctoral degree and who expect to do so within 12 months of the application due date. On the application due date, candidates may not have completed more than 12 months of postdoctoral training.

More information on The BRAIN Initiative training opportunities: The Brain Initiative.

For questions regarding BRAIN F32 applications and research proposals, please contact: Olivier Berton, NIDA Program Director, Olivier.berton@nih.gov.

NIDA Diversity Scholars Travel Awards
NIDA Diversity Scholars Travel Awards are offered to graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and early-state investigators conducting substance abuse and addiction research. The monetary travel awards help with the cost of attending national scientific conferences that open doors for networking, presenting posters or oral talks, as well as other career development opportunities.
Read more about the Travel Awards.

National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN)
The NRMN is a national network of mentors and mentees from all biomedical disciplines relevant to the NIH mission that provides mentorship, professional development, mentor/mentee training, and networking resources to individuals from the undergraduate to early career faculty levels. NRMN’s initiatives include a web-based mentor networking platform, in-person conferences and online training sessions, grantsmanship workshops, and in-depth one-on-one mentoring sessions.
Read more about the network.

Loan Repayment Program (LRP)
NIDA participates in three of the Loan Repayment Programs: Clinical, Pediatric, and Health Disparities Research. In exchange for a 2-year research commitment in clinical, pediatric, or health disparities research related to substance use disorders, NIDA will repay qualified educational debt up to $50,000 per year during this 2-year period.
Read more about the program.

Investigator

Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
Program Directors/Principal Investigators holding specific types of research grants (see the FOA for activity codes) can apply for administrative supplements to improve the diversity of the research workforce by recruiting and supporting students, post-doctorates, and eligible investigators from diverse backgrounds, including those from groups that have been shown to be underrepresented in health-related research. This supplement opportunity is also available to PDs/PIs of research grants who are or become disabled and need additional support to accommodate their disability in order to continue to work on the research project. Administrative supplements must support work within the scope of the original project.
Read more about this supplement opportunity.
FOA: PA-21-071

For all HEAL grantees:
Notice of Special Interest to Encourage Eligible NIH HEAL Initiative Awardees to Apply for PA-21-071: Research Supplements to Promote Diversity in Health-Related Research (Admin Supp - Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
This funding opportunity is for HEAL Initiative awardees to apply for diversity supplements (PA-21-071). The goal of this FOA is to diversify the scientific workforce at institutions by increasing the participation of individuals from groups identified as underrepresented in health-related research and preparing them to become independently funded researchers. Contact Michele Rankin, Ph.D. prior to submission of an application by phone (301-480-3832) or by email (rankinm@mail.nih.gov) to discuss important eligibility, timeline considerations, and HEAL specific requirements.
FOA: NOT-NS-20-107

Notice of Special Interest (NOSI): NIH Research Project Grant (R01) Applications from Individuals from Diverse Backgrounds, Including Under-Represented Minorities
The National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) is now participating in NOT-NS-21-049. This NOSI utilizes the NIH parent R01 announcement to encourage Program Director(s)/Principal Investigator(s) (PD(s)/PI(s)) from diverse backgrounds to conduct and contribute to the research areas of NIDA. The long-term goal of this effort is to enhance diversity in the biomedical research workforce. For direct inquiries please contact Dr. Susan Weiss.

FOA: NOT-DA-21053

NIDA Diversity Supplement Professional Development Workshop
Each year, NIDA hosts an annual two-day Diversity Supplement Workshop to bring together current NIDA Diversity Supplement recipients at the predoctoral, postdoctoral, and early investigator levels. Participants meet and network with NIDA program staff, senior officials, and other investigators. This workshop is a great opportunity for supplement recipients to receive critical guidance on pursuing funding opportunities and how to transition to independent research careers.
Read about the workshop.

NIDA Diversity Scholars Network (NDSN)
The NDSN is a competitive, rigorous, and comprehensive program aimed at enhancing the funding success of underrepresented early-stage investigators conducting substance abuse and addiction research. The NDSN program consists of two separate meetings with an interim application development period to assist scholars in applying for and receiving NIH career development awards and research grants.
Read more about the network.

The Support of Research Excellence (SuRE & SuRE-First) Program
The Support for Research Excellence (SuRE) Program has replaced the Support of Competitive Research (SCORE) Program. SuRE is a research capacity building program designed to develop and sustain research excellence in U.S. higher education institutions that receive limited NIH research support and serve students from groups underrepresented in biomedical research with an emphasis on providing students with research opportunities and enriching the research environment at the applicant institutions. Faculty investigators who have had experience leading independent research who are not currently program directors/principal investigators of active NIH research project grants may apply for a SuRE Award (PAR-21-169). Faculty who haven’t had any prior independent research grant support are encouraged to apply for the SuRE-First Award (PAR-21-173).

Loan Repayment Program (LRP)
NIDA participates in three of the Loan Repayment Programs: Clinical, Pediatric, and Health Disparities Research. In exchange for a 2-year research commitment in clinical, pediatric, or health disparities research related to substance use disorders, NIDA will repay qualified educational debt up to $50,000 per year during this 2-year period.
Read more about the program.

National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN)
The NRMN is a national network of mentors and mentees from all biomedical disciplines relevant to the NIH mission that provides mentorship, professional development, mentor/mentee training, and networking resources to individuals from the undergraduate to early career faculty levels. NRMN’s initiatives include a web-based mentor networking platform, in-person conferences and online training sessions, grantsmanship workshops, and in-depth one-on-one mentoring sessions.
Read more about the network.

NIDA Diversity Scholars Travel Awards
NIDA Diversity Scholars Travel Awards are offered to graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and early-state investigators conducting substance abuse and addiction research. The monetary travel awards help with the cost of attending national scientific conferences that open doors for networking, presenting posters or oral talks, as well as other career development opportunities.
Read more about the Travel Awards.

Institutional Diversity Awards

Providing Research Education Experiences to Enhance Diversity in the Next Generation of Substance Abuse and Addiction Scientists (R25 – Clinical Trials Not Allowed)
This NIDA R25 funding opportunity seeks to facilitate the research education of undergraduate students, postbaccalaureates, predoctoral students, postdoctoral fellows, and early-stage investigators from diverse backgrounds, including those from groups underrepresented in the NIDA research portfolio.
FOA: PAR-20-236
See current NIDA-funded Research Education Experience to Enhance Diversity R25s on NIH RePORTER.

Enhancing Neuroscience Diversity through Undergraduate Research Education Experiences (BP-ENDURE) (R25 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
The goal of ENDURE is to provide individuals who are typically underrepresented in neuroscience research with training at the undergraduate level so they are prepared to enter and successfully complete neuroscience Ph.D. programs. ENDURE will provide this undergraduate training through partnerships between research-intensive institutions and institutions with a substantial enrollment of neuroscience majors from diverse groups. This includes individuals from underrepresented racial and ethnic groups, individuals with disabilities, and individuals from economically disadvantaged backgrounds. ENDURE undergraduate training programs will support a range of activities to increase student interest and involvement in the neurosciences, including research experiences, core and advanced neuroscience courses, seminars, and journal clubs.

More information on the ENDURE Undergraduate Education program can be found here: ENDURE.

Summer Research Education Experience Program (R25 Clinical Trial Not Allowed)
The Summer Research Education Experience Program creates opportunities for high school and undergraduate students to have hands-on exposure to research to reinforce their intent to graduate with a science degree or continue to participate in research. This program also includes activities that support scientific development, such as writing and presentation skills. Students and teachers from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.
FOA: PAR-19-197
See current NIDA-funded Summer Research Experience R25s on NIH RePORTER.

BUILD Initiative
BUILD awards consist of 10 linked grants issued to undergraduate institutions to implement and study innovative approaches to engaging and retaining students from diverse backgrounds in biomedical research. This initiative aims to help students on the pathway to become future contributors to the NIH-funded research enterprise. Through implementing a variety of innovative approaches to skill building, mentorship, and institutional change, the BUILD-funded institutions address various challenges faced by students, faculty, and institutions.
FOA: RFA-RM-18-006