Career Development

The Center for Women's Health Research is proud to be part of the outstanding career development tradition at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. The Center is happy to connect students, fellows, and junior investigators with leadership, mentorship, fellowship, and other career education opportunities throughout the School of Medicine. If you know of a fellowship, leadership, education or mentorship program not mentioned below, please contact

The Center for Women’s Mood Disorders within the Department of Psychiatry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill hosts the only postdoctoral training fellowship program in the field of Reproductive Mood Disorders funded by NIH. The program, directed by David R. Rubinow, M.D. and Susan S. Girdler, Ph.D., is designed to train both MD and PhD scientists, and foster the development of researchers with expertise in both the biological basis and clinically relevant (predicative) phenotypes of reproductive mood disorders (perinatal depression, premenstrual dysphoric disorder, and perimenopausal depression). Training will involve a broad-based and integrative perspective, involving not only psychiatry but cardiology and genetics, endocrinology, neuroscience, and obstetrics/gynecology.

The program’s emphasis is on training in pathophysiological mechanisms that underlie reproductive mood disorders. The trainees will develop mastery in the following: reproductive hormonal physiology and signaling; methods for manipulating the reproductive system; and clinical phenomenology of reproductive mood disorders. Additionally, trainees will develop expertise in one of three methodological training tracks: Neurosciences, Genetics, or Stress Physiology. Fellows who complete this program will be poised to become independent researches, having the requisite foundation to examine biobehavioral mechanisms in reproductive mood disorders and the ability to identify therapeutic biologic targets in their future independent research.

The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill represents an ideal setting for this program because it possesses a well-known collaborative infrastructure, a vibrant women’s mood disorder clinical program (which includes the first inpatient perinatal depression program in the country), and a critical mass of researchers in reproductive mood disorders with a track record of success.

This is a two year training program, with possible extension of a third year. Salary is consistent with the NIH post-doctoral stipend levels. Criteria for selection include demonstrated experience in reproductive mood disorders (or a highly related area), a strong potential to become an independent investigator, strength in verbal and written communication, curiosity, and genuine commitment to advancing the scientific rigor of the reproductive mood disorders field. Applications with interdisciplinary interests are strongly encouraged. U.S. citizenship or permanent residency is required.

Applications are being accepted for a flexible start date between July 1, 2018 – June 30, 2019. Send your curriculum vitae and letter of interest to Susan Girdler, Ph.D. (co-Program Director) at susan_girdler@med.unc.edu or Department of Psychiatry CB 7175 University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, NC 27599.

The University of North Carolina Department of Family Medicine is a premier department in the discipline, whose graduates have an impressive track record of leadership in clinical, teaching and research organizations. The department has a long history of successful fellowship training through a number of programs:

Faculty Development Fellowship: A nationally recognized part-time program for early career academic family physicians that prepares them to be leaders at a critical time in the development of our healthcare system.

Career Development Fellowship: A highly flexible full-time program for family physicians. Fellowships are one to three years, with an educational program and experience tailored to individual clinical and career objectives

Primary Care Sports Medicine Fellowship: This fellowship prepares the primary care physician for the role of a sports team physician or physician that specializes in sports medicine.

NRSA Primary Care Research Fellowship: A widely recognized fellowship that provides extensive research training to primary care physicians—family physicians, general internists and general pediatricians—who are preparing for research-focused academic careers.

Preventive Medicine Residency: An ACGME-approved residency open to physicians who have already completed residencies in other disciplines—thus, it serves as a fellowship—who seek additional skills in the fields of public health and preventive medicine.

UNC Global Health Education Fellowship in Nicaragua: A two year fellowship opportunity working to improve primary care education and assist with Family Medicine curriculum development at the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de Nicaragua, León.

The "Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women’s Health" (BIRCWH) supports research career development of junior faculty members, known as BIRCWH Scholars, who have recently completed clinical training or postdoctoral fellowships, and who are commencing:

  1. Basic Research
  2. Translational Research
  3. Clinical Research
  4. And/or health services research relevant to women's health

The goal of this NIH initiative is to promote the performance of research and transfer of findings that will benefit the health of women. The programs will accomplish these goals by bridging advanced training with research independence and bridging scientific disciplines or areas of interest.

UNC was one of the first programs selected in 2000 to become a “Building Interdisciplinary Research Careers in Women’s Health” (BIRCWH) K12 Program by the NIH and has been continuously funded.

Faculty Support According to School

The NIH Office of Research on Women's Health (ORWH) offers a variety of career development resources for women's health researchers. This includes sponsored courses for those seeking Continuing Medical Education (CME), Continuing Nursing Education (CNE), or Continuing Pharmacy Education (CPE) credit - or simply for the curious!

  • The Basic Science and the Biological BasisforSex- and Gender-Related Differences
  • Sex and Gender Differences in Health and Behavior
  • The Influence of Sex & Gender on Disease Expression and Treatment
Learn more and take courses

The UNC North Carolina Translation & Clinical Sciences Institute (NC TraCS) has a number of formal educational programs tailored specifically to interdisciplinary clinical and translational science, including:

  • CTSA KL2 is a junior faculty training program that combines didactic and experiential components designed to launch researchers into careers as leaders and collaborators in clinical/translational research programs.
  • R-Writing Group is an intensive working group designed to help researchers develop and submit their first investigator-initiated R-type proposals.
  • Translational and Clinical Research Curriculum (TCRC) is a 2-year, non-degree program providing training in biostatistics, epidemiology and career development skills for those who have obtained a terminal degree and who desire a career in clinical/translational research.
  • Masters of Science in Clinical Research is a 2-year degree program for those who already have a doctoral degree and who are seeking to develop the skills necessary for a successful career as a principal investigator and collaborator in clinical/translational research.
Visit the NC TraCS Education & Training site.

UNC Research offers webinars, seminars, and professional training opportunities. Their calendar of offerings is consistently updated, and an excellent resource for researchers at any level in their career.

Check out the latest offerings at UNC Research Training Opportunities