University of Maryland Announces Launch of Research Leaders Fellows Program

University of Maryland Announces Launch of Research Leaders Fellows Program

The University of Maryland has announced the launch of a new Research Leaders Fellows Program for faculty this fall. The program is designed to support its newest research leaders, helping promising scholars expand their impact in their fields while providing the leadership skills to compete for large-scale multidisciplinary awards.

UMD President Darryll J. Pines introduced the Research Leaders Fellows Program in his inaugural message to campus, saying, “In this time of change, we need to be prepared and competitive as new research funding opportunities arise.”

The 10-month program will be organized by the Office of the Vice President for Research (VPR) and will feature ten interactive modules that will prepare and position faculty to advance the growth of their research program to new levels of excellence. Approximately 18 Research Leaders Fellows from across campus will be selected to participate in the initial cohort.  

“The Research Leaders Fellows Program will further advance our research enterprise and prepare our faculty to lead large-scale, transformative research initiatives that achieve broad, societal impact,” said Vice President for Research Laurie Locascio. "This program is timely, because we’re at a critical juncture for public universities in general, and these researchers are at a critical point in their careers. The breakthroughs related to many of the most difficult challenges in our world today—COVID-19, racism, climate change—will come at the intersection of different research disciplines, and the convergence of many ways of thinking.”

The new program will help faculty: 

  • Develop unique leadership skills 

  • Build and manage large multidisciplinary research teams

  • Learn approaches for creative ideation to formulate and capture big ideas 

  • Connect with a peer group of similarly focused and motivated researchers 

  • Receive individual, personalized mentorship from current research leaders at UMD  

  • Learn from other faculty who have successfully pursued and led center-level awards 

  • Discover proposal support resources available to help advance large-scale proposals

This program is specifically designed for recently tenured associate professors who have the potential to lead multidisciplinary research initiatives and direct future campus-wide centers or institutes. Nominations will be solicited from the Deans, and candidates are also encouraged to self-nominate, as well. Deans do not need to endorse or review self-nominations. Exceptions for assistant and full professors will be considered with appropriate justification. 

“We are committed to nurturing our young, talented researchers, mentoring them so they can lead the kind of projects that address the grand challenges of our time,” said President Pines. “They represent the next generation of leaders who will help take our research enterprise to new levels of excellence.”

About the University of Maryland
The University of Maryland, College Park is the state's flagship university and one of the nation's preeminent public research universities. A global leader in research, entrepreneurship and innovation, the university is home to more than 40,000 students,10,000 faculty and staff, and 297 academic programs. As one of the nation’s top producers of Fulbright scholars, its faculty includes two Nobel laureates, three Pulitzer Prize winners and 58 members of the national academies. The institution has a $2.1 billion operating budget and secures more than $1 billion annually in research funding together with the University of Maryland, Baltimore. For more information about the University of Maryland, College Park, visit

September 1, 2020

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