ORAU kicks off new $129.7 million contract to manage NASA Postdoctoral Program with new website for fellowships

Source: ORAU | Article | February 1, 2022 |

Oak Ridge, Tenn.—ORAU assumed management of a $129.7 million contract for the NASA Postdoctoral Program (NPP) on Jan. 30 with a new website for available fellowships. Both early-career and senior scientists are invited to explore these fellowship opportunities and share in NASA’s mission to develop advancements in science, technology, aeronautics and space exploration. The first round of upcoming application deadlines for these fellowships is March 1.

“ORAU is thrilled to officially take over the management of this prestigious NASA contract that includes diverse scientific and technological fellowships offered at NASA and one-of-a-kind educational experiences that prepare future leaders for NASA and the academic community,” said ORAU NPP Program Director J. Scott Miller, Ph.D. “In our management efforts, ORAU will support NASA’s goal to build an inclusive, collaborative, open, and innovative work environment that enhances work-life balance and encourages career development for postdoctoral fellows.” 

The NPP offers unique research opportunities to highly-talented U.S. and non-U.S. scientists to engage in ongoing NASA research projects with top scientists at a NASA Center, NASA Headquarters or at a NASA-affiliated research institute. These one- to three-year fellowships are competitive and are designed to advance NASA’s missions in space science, earth science, aeronautics, space operations, exploration systems and astrobiology. 

Deadlines and Eligibility

Annual NPP application deadlines are March 1, July 1, and Nov. 1Scientists within five years of having received their degrees are eligible to apply as a postdoctoral fellow; scientists who have received their doctorates more than five years previously may apply as a senior fellow. After the first year as a postdoctoral fellow, scientists interested in management may apply to the postdoctoral management program at NASA Headquarters.


Stipend rates for these NASA postdoctoral fellows currently start at $63,000 per year. Supplements are provided for high cost-of-living areas and certain academic specialties. The stipend amount for a senior postdoctoral fellow is based on the location of the appointment, experience (number of years beyond the doctoral degree) and career achievement, including academic rank and professional title. Available benefits include health insurance supplements, professional development resources, a research allowance up to $10,000 per year and relocation reimbursement.

Learn More and Apply

Learn more about the NPP, including how to apply, eligibility and requirements, additional benefits and what to expect during the application process at https://npp.orau.org. For additional information, email npp@orau.org.

According to NASA, it is America’s civil space program and the global leader in space exploration. The agency has a diverse workforce of just under 18,000 civil servants, and works with many more U.S. contractors, academia, and international and commercial partners to explore, discover, and expand knowledge for the benefit of humanity. With an annual budget of $23.2 billion in Fiscal Year 2021, which is less than 0.5% of the overall U.S. federal budget, NASA supports more than 312,000 jobs across the United States, generating more than $64.3 billion in total economic output (Fiscal Year 2019). Learn more at https://www.nasa.gov/about