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Division of Biomedical Research Workforce

Career Path

NIH Funding Programs by Career Stage

Early Career
DP2, K01, K02, K08, K22, K43, K76, R25
Early career researchers are transitioning to fully independent positions as investigators and faculty members. Non-US citizens are eligible to participate in the K99 award.
Key F = Fellowship
K = Career Development
R = Research
T = Training
P = Program Project/Center

*LMIC = Low-and-Middle-Income Country

Undergraduate Education

Engaging in research projects outside the classroom during undergraduate years is important.

Early Career

The main goal for these early career researchers is to establish themselves and their teams as experts in their fields of research.

Graduate/​Clinical Doctorate

The emphasis during these years is on acquiring the fundamental knowledge to master scientific research or clinical discipline. An experienced mentor is critical to successful training.

Established Investigator

Established researchers are focused on their independent research, and use their broad knowledge and scientific expertise to impact public health and society at large.


Research during this period is increasingly sophisticated and independent. The selection of a mentor during this period is very important for its impact on the researcher's future professional career.