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Sarnoff Scholar Award

Program Description

The Sarnoff Scholar Award is a competitive award designed to support junior faculty during the early years of faculty appointment.  The Award provides substantial financial support to former Sarnoff Fellows who are committed to pursuing a career in cardiovascular research.


Applicants may apply during the last year of Subspecialty Fellowship.  The Scholar Award will be contingent upon the appointment to a junior faculty (Instructor or Assistant Professor) position and clear evidence of a strong institutional commitment.  Applicants may apply as early as during the last year of their post-residency fellowship, but no later than two years after completion of the post-residency fellowship (up to the end of the second year of their faculty appointment or two years post-fellowship - whichever is shorter).


Funding and Terms

The Sarnoff Scholar Award is designed to provide salary support for up to two consecutive years of protected research.  Successful candidates will be expected to have at least 75% of their effort protected to develop their research program.  The Award is designed specifically to continue the longitudinal commitment of the Foundation to support the training and career development of new physician-scientists.

The stipend is $90,000 per year, which covers salary support.  A maximum of 10% indirect costs will be paid to the institution for handling the Award.  The Scholar's institution may supplement the stipend in accordance with its usual policy for comparable faculty positions.

In addition to the annual stipend, Sarnoff Scholars receive the following benefits:

  • An annual budget of up to $12,000 for laboratory supplies and professional journal subscriptions
  • Support to cover travel and housing to attend the Annual Scientific Meeting
  • Up to $1,500 annually to defray the cost of health insurance if it is not provided by the Scholars's host institution
  • Travel funds of up to $1,500 to enable the Scholar to present a paper at a national conference, based on the Scholar's research, within two years of completing the Scholar Award Program

Sarnoff Scholars will be encouraged to seek extramural funding.  We recognize that other career-development funding mechanisms might preclude the Scholar from holding both awards.  For those circumstances where both grants can be held, Scholars can hold the award concurrently with the Sarnoff Award fro one year.


The Scholar will be expected to submit a K-level grant to NIH prior to the end of the award term.


Selection Criteria


The Scientific Committee will award an applicant who demonstrates a high standard of intellectual and academic achievement and promise. In particular, the Scientific Committee considers:

  • The applicant's potential for both a successful career as an independent researcher and a successful training experience
  • The scientific merit of the applicant's research proposal, including significance and originality of proposed research goals, soundness of methodology, and clarity of presentation
  • The qualifications of the applicant, including suitable career stage, relevant research experience, prior scientific publications and other related accomplishments
  • The training environment of the host institution, including the extent of opportunity presented by the project for the candidate to acquire new approaches, techniques, and methods
  • The Preceptor's relevant research expertise, previous experience in training, specific plan for training the applicant, and resources and environment
  • The commitment of the institution to the development of the careers of physician-scientists, as reflected in a commitment to provide sufficient space, resources and protected time to promote the development of young physician-scientists.

For More Information

For more information on the Scholar Award, please contact Dana Boyd at


Current Awardees



Amanda (Amy) Elliott, MD   2019-2021 Sarnoff Scholar
Host Institution: Massachusetts General Hospital
Preceptors: Mark Daly, PhD and Anne Needham Thorndike, MD
Research Topic: Study of Gene-environment Interactions in Obesity and Metabolic Disease

Arun Padmanabhan, MD, PhD   2020-22 Sarnoff Scholar

Host Institution:

University of California, San Francisco

Preceptor:Deepak Srivistava, MD
Research Topic: A BRD4-GATA4 model regulates cardiomyocyte homeostasis

James Pirruccello, MD   2021-22 Sarnoff Scholar 

Host Institution:Massachusetts General Hospital
Preceptors:Patrick Ellinor, MD
Research Topic: Deep Learning Enables Genetic Analysis of the Human Aorta


 Han Zhu, MD   2020-22 Sarnoff Scholar
Host Institution:Stanford
Preceptors:Mark Davis, PhD, Patricia Nguyen, MD and Sean Wu, MD, PhD 
Research Topic: Casual T-cell mechanisms in ICI myocarditis






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