Return to Fellowships
Course Fellowships for Woods Hole Marine Biological Laboratory and Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory
Overview  |  Web Lectures   |  Fellowships  |  Activities  |  Home 

Dear Colleagues,

The IBRO Board of Schools and the IAC-USNC (the US/Canada Regional Committee of IBRO, a joint effort of the Society for Neuroscience and the U.S. National Academies) seek to encourage highly qualified and motivated research trainees from resource-restricted countries to apply for admission to summer neuroscience courses at the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Massachusetts and the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in Cold Spring Harbor, New York. The IAC-USNC, in collaboration with IBRO, has provided substantial financial support to the MBL and the CSHL to support the participation of students from resource-restricted countries in their programs, but a concerted effort at identifying potentially successful applicants is needed for this partnership to succeed. This is an effort to help the most meritorious alumni of IBRO Neuroscience Schools and other outstanding young scientists gain “capstone” experiences in leading training programs. These experiences are intended to benefit scientists who will continue to study and work in less financially advantaged regions such as those in Latin America, Africa, Central and Eastern Europe, and Asia/Pacific.

New scientists are encouraged to apply for appropriate courses that may benefit their scientific development, with the knowledge that very substantial (usually complete) financial support is available to provide for the participation of several fellows. Applications should be submitted through the normal MBL and CSHL application mechanisms. The MBL or the CSHL will inform students if they have been selected to receive IAC-USNC/IBRO funds. No applications should be sent to IBRO or the IAC-USNC directly. While not required, the IAC-USNC/IBRO does request that persons preparing their applications email the IAC-USNC (  ) to let us know you are applying (preferably in advance of the application deadline). In addition, if you previously applied but were not accepted, please consider applying again as the application pool varies each year.

More information about MBL courses included in this program (Neural Systems and Behavior, Neurobiology, Methods in Computational Neuroscience, Neural Development and Genetics of Zebrafish, Fundamental Issues in Vision Research, Neuroinformatics, and “SPINES” ) is available at the MBL’s education website under “Summer Courses” or “Special Topics Courses.” More information about the CSHL courses included in this program (Ion Channel Physiology, Neurobiology of Drosophila, Imaging Structure & Function in the Nervous System) is available at Participants in the 2003 and 2004 IAC-USNC/IBRO program with MBL have also agreed to provide advice to their peers on selecting an appropriate course and preparing their applications. They are as follows:

To strengthen their applications, applicants are encouraged to contact previous IBRO instructors and other well-recognized scientists familiar with neuroscience in the U.S. to ask them to write a letter addressing the points outlined in the attached letter. If you have not interacted with such scientists, the IAC-USNC may be able to help you identify someone who can interview you and write a letter based on this interview. (Contact Dr. Marilee Shelton-Davenport or Charyl Delaney  for assistance.   )

In addition to strengthening their applications by including a letter from neuroscientists familiar with the MBL or the CSHL type programs, applicants are also encouraged to remember that these courses are competitive in nature and prepare their applications to the best of their ability.

Please do not hesitate to consider this opportunity, as the application deadline for some courses is approaching quickly (February 1, 2005).  Click HERE to download a copy of the flyer.


John G. Hildebrand, PhD
Member, IAC-USNC (Society for Neuroscience
International Affairs Committee -National Academy of Sciences U.S. National Committee for IBRO) -- US/Canada Regional Committee of IBRO
Chair, Board of IBRO Schools

Bruce McEwen, PhD
Chair, IAC-USNC (Society for Neuroscience
International Affairs Committee -National Academy of Sciences U.S. National Committee for IBRO) -- US/Canada Regional Committee of IBRO

Points that the candidate's referee (the person writing a letter on behalf of a candidate) should address in their reference letter:

  1. brief summary of scientific education and experience of the candidate (interviewee)
  2. a statement about how well you know the interviewee
  3. your assessment of the person's comprehension of and skill in using written and spoken English
  4. your assessment of the person's knowledge about the course in question and reasons for wanting to take it
  5. your opinion about the level of maturity, motivation, forthrightness, etc., of the interviewee
  6. your assessment of the previous coursework, laboratory, and research experience the interviewee may have had, especially related to neuroscience and focusing in particular on the performance of the individual in the IBRO School or Course in question
  7. information about the immediate and longer-term future plans and aspirations of the interviewee and the prospect that the experience gained at the MBL or CSHL would be used shortly after the course
  8. a summary of your impressions of the interviewee and recommendation regarding suitability for an MBL or CSHL type course
  9. information about you, the interviewer, such as academic credentials and level of your familiarity with these courses and/or other advanced research training programs in the U.S.

The IAC-USNC/IBRO is a joint committee of the Society for Neuroscience and the U.S. National Academies (the “Society for Neuroscience International Affairs Committee and National Academies U.S. National Committee for IBRO). The goal of the committee is to increase understanding of the nervous system in health and disease worldwide. Support of participants is made possible by IBRO funds allocated to the committee. The committee is able to oversee such efforts due to support of the IAC-USNC/IBRO by U.S. National Institutes of Health (NIH), specifically the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, and the National Institute on Drug Abuse.


Overview  |  Web Lectures  |  Fellowships  |  Activities  |  Home  |  SFN   |  NAS  |  IBRO