Training Opportunities in the Vollum

Training the next generation of scientists is a priority at the Vollum Institute. Graduate students and postdoctoral fellows receive highly individualized, hands-on training, working alongside Vollum scientists. Trainees also have multiple opportunities for collaboration.

Postdoctoral Training

The approximately 36 postdoctoral fellows at the Vollum are supported from institutional training grants, research grants, and special fellowships. Postdocs are recruited from across the U.S. and the world, and they receive training not only in their discipline but also in areas essential for their career—from scientific writing to lab management to scientific integrity. All trainees attend a weekly seminar series featuring distinguished scientists from institutions throughout the world. If you are interested in postdoctoral training at the Vollum, contact the individual faculty member whose research interests you.

For more information about postdoctoral training at OHSU and resources for postdocs — including information for international trainees — visit the OHSU Postdoctoral Fellows website.

Shanshuang Chen, PhD preparing samples for cryo-EM

Graduate Programs

Graduate students interested in working with Vollum scientists must first be enrolled in one of OHSU's basic science programs, such as the Neuroscience Graduate Program (NGP), the Graduate Program in Biomedical Sciences (PBMS), or the MD/PhD program in the School of Medicine. The majority of the students in the Vollum are part of the Neuroscience Graduate Program, whose director is Kelly Monk, Ph.D. This program continues to draw new faculty from throughout the OHSU campus, ensuring students access to exceptional mentoring. The NGP is supported by several institutional training grants. The Vollum is also home to many students in the PMCB, a campus-wide program that includes the OHSU basic science departments.

Visit OHSU's School of Medicine Graduate Studies for more information about graduate degree programs at OHSU and resources available to current graduate students.

Skyler Jackman and Omar Koita working on an e-phys rig
Alexandra Houser practices patch-clamping techniques during NGP Bootcamp training

Postbaccalaureate Research Education Program

The OHSU Postbaccalaureate Research Education Program provides a 1-year research and mentoring experience for recent college graduates from underrepresented backgrounds, who are intent on transitioning to PhD programs. The pilot program (2018–2020) focused on neuroscience with support from the OHSU Office of Research and Innovation and the Vollum Institute.

Scholars in the program do short rotations in labs before choosing a lab for the year-long research experience. Lab research is supplemented by professional skills training, assistance with graduate applications, abstract writing, and mentoring. Scholars are also integrated with first-year graduate students for training in critical reading of the original literature. All scholars that have completed the program have successfully matched to competitive graduate programs. The program received a 5-year grant from NIH (NIGMS PREP) allowing expansion of the program beyond neuroscience to include other disciplines at OHSU. For more information, see

Vollum/NGP Summer Undergraduate Program

The Vollum/NGP Undergraduate Summer Research Program provides fellowships for undergraduate students to engage in neuroscience research at OHSU. Talented young scientists from around the United States and overseas are selected through a competitive application process. Students are partnered with labs where they pursue independent research in molecular, cellular, and behavioral neuroscience. In addition to working in the lab, students attend regular classes on the principles of modern neuroscience, and receive valuable mentoring on applying to graduate school and pursuing careers in science.