UGA Postdoctoral Scholars Program: Future Faculty for Inclusive Research Excellence (FFIRE)

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Program Description

The UGA Future Faculty for Inclusive Research Excellence (FFIRE) Postdoctoral Scholars program is a postdoctoral research and academic career development program designed to recruit, train, and support exceptional new postdoctoral scholars pursuing academic careers.

Scholars will gain the rigorous disciplinary research training of a traditional academic postdoc with faculty mentors leading innovative and interdisciplinary UGA research groups and also will engage in comprehensive integrated academic career development programming and mentoring.

Faculty and postdocs from all disciplines are eligible to participate, and projects directly advancing UGA’s strategic research priorities are particularly encouraged. The program is jointly funded by the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs in the Office of Research, individual faculty mentors and research units.

Program Goals

  • Recruit exceptional postdoctoral scholars to UGA research teams to enhance and accelerate strategic research goals.
  • Leverage the unique perspectives, personal strengths and experiences, and broad expertise of FFIRE fellows to build excellent research teams that maximize the impact of UGA research and optimize the solutions we bring to complex problems.
  • Create a pipeline of interdisciplinary and innovative scholars prepared to join and lead the next generation of faculty.
  • Enhance the culture of innovation, belonging, and interdisciplinarity throughout UGA’s research community.

Fellowship Features

  • 2-year program, with a fellowship start date of August 2024.
  • Competitive annual salary with full benefits for full-time/12-month position.
  • Collaborative, innovative, well-funded research projects and faculty mentors with a commitment to excellence in innovation, mentoring, and research.
  • Academic career professional development, including programs to support training in mentorship, grant writing, academic communication, pedagogy, academic leadership, innovation and entrepreneurship, financial project management, and career exploration.
  • Annual travel award to attend a national or international academic conference.
  • Annual cohort retreat focused on academic job search skills: workshops to develop application materials, mentor-led mock interviews, practice seminars and job talks, and negotiation coaching.

FFIRE Faculty Mentors


Application Process

  • Eligibility:
    • PhD conferred prior to August 2024.
    • Current UGA postdocs are not eligible to apply.
  • Application portal: Full applications are submitted via UGA’s InfoReady Portal, which requires either UGA credentials or a guest account.  Please first submit this brief FFIRE Intent to Apply/Request for Guest InfoReady Account form.  The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs will then be in touch regarding your UGA InfoReady guest account.
  • Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis, but please submit by March 31, 2024 to be considered in the first round of review for August 2024 admission.
  • Application requirements include:
    • CV
    • 3 letters of support, including from PhD mentor and/or current research mentor.  Letters may be sent directly from the reference to the UGA Office of Postdoctoral Affairs via email at with the applicant’s name in the subject line.
    • Research statement (2 page maximum) that summarizes your previous research experience and accomplishments and your research interests and priorities for your postdoctoral training. Clearly identify specific areas of interest for postdoctoral research and identify FFIRE faculty mentors of interest.
    • Personal statement (2 page maximum) that includes a clear description of your mid- and long-term career goals, commitment to innovation and interdisciplinarity, and your potential to bring unique expertise, experience, perspectives, and strengths to the UGA research community.
  • Faculty interviews: Finalists will be invited to participate in interviews with potential faculty mentors. A financial commitment from a UGA FFIRE mentor is required for final selection.
  • Scholar selection criteria:
    • Evidence of excellent research training, productivity, and integrity
    • Pursuit of innovative and rigorous collaborative research
    • Potential to bring unique experience, expertise and perspective to the research environment
    • Potential and commitment to pursue an academic career


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