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The ORISE Research Participation Programs at FDA are educational and training programs designed to provide college students, recent graduates, and university faculty opportunities to participate in project-specific FDA research and developmental activities.

Because of the educational nature of these programs, participants must fall into one of the following categories:

  • Be currently enrolled in an accredited college or university pursuing a degree in a STEM (science, technology, engineering or math) discipline; or
  • Have received such a degree within five years of the start date of the appointment; or
  • Currently serve as a full-time faculty member at an accredited college or university.

Other applicants, including established scientists interested in new research training activities, will be considered on a case-by-case basis as approved by the program sponsor and ORISE management staff.

Postgraduate appointments are normally for one year and renewable for up to three additional years, subject to project needs and funding availability. Longer periods may apply for postdoctoral appointments (up to five years may be approved based on the research area and progress and benefit to the participant).

All applicants must have resided in the U.S. for at least three (3) of the past five (5) years for the Office of Personnel Management to be able to complete a background check. An applicant who cannot meet the residency requirement, but who has received a favorable FBI fingerprint check, may be accepted and on-boarded on a case-by-case basis.

Generally, participants are not required to hold U.S. citizenship. However, a few FDA offices may only appoint U.S. citizens due to the sensitive nature of the research performed. Any such restrictions will be clearly stated in the project description. For more information on eligibility requirements for non-U.S. citizens, please see Guidelines for Non-U.S. Citizens.