Provost's Postdoctoral Fellows

“We have an obligation to see that the greatest variety of perspectives is brought to bear on the issues before us as scholars and citizens.”

– Chancellor Robert J. Zimmer

The Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellows Program 

The Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellows Program (PPFP) reflects the University of Chicago’s commitment to increasing the diversity of its faculty. This program provides up to two years of funding for the highest caliber junior scholars from diverse backgrounds, including historically underrepresented groups, such as Black/African American, American Indian or Alaskan Native, and Hispanic/Latino scholars.

Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellows will be appointed as Instructors on the tenure track for up to two years* with the intent that they will be promoted to Assistant Professor at the end of the fellowship period. Funding for the period of fellowship at the rank of Instructor will be provided by the Office of the Provost. After a Fellow is promoted to Assistant Professor, the Office of the Provost will provide salary support to the unit in accordance with the funding policies concerning faculty diversity.

Fellows will participate in the activities of their academic unit (i.e., school, institute, or department) and have a designated faculty mentor. Fellows will receive research support, and participate in programming offered by the Office of the Provost’s designed to help support them in their transition to Assistant Professor and their success as a faculty member. Fellows will typically teach one class per year, teaching responsibilities may be reduced further per the teaching customs of the department/division.

The Proposal Process

Recruitment under the PPFP should occur in conjunction with an existing search authorized by the dean. If the department wishes to include the option of recruiting via the PPFP, then the dean should submit the following to Vice Provost Waldo E. Johnson, Jr.:

  • a description of the position;

  • a search plan with attention to recruiting those currently underrepresented in the academy into the candidate pool;

  • a mentoring plan; and

  • a draft job ad.

The PPFP should be posted as an ad that is separate but related to the primary job ad; candidates may apply to either or both positions.

Participating units must also have members of the search committee and department participate in a search committee training which can be scheduled with the Office of the Provost. This evidenced-based program teaches best practices for searching for excellence and diversity.

Fellows will participate in the activities of their academic unit and have a designated faculty mentor. Fellows will typically teach one class per year per the teaching expectations of the department/ division/school. Fellows will receive research funding from the Office of the Provost, and opportunities to participate in programming designed to support them as they prepare to transition to Assistant Professor. There may be variations on the structure of the program depending on the school or division.

If the final candidate accepts the offer and is from a group historically underrepresented in the academy such as black/African American, American Indian or Alaskan Native, Hispanic/Latinx scholars or women in certain fields, the dean may request that they be funded centrally.

Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellows will begin their initial term as a tenure-track faculty member with the rank of Instructor for up to two years. Fellows must have been awarded the doctoral degree by the beginning of the appointment. Deferred start dates may result in a corresponding truncation of the fellowship period.

They will undergo review for promotion to the rank of Assistant Professor at the end of the fellowship period. 

Download a PDF outlining the proposal process here.

Information for the Division of Physical Sciences

The University of Chicago’s Division of the Physical Sciences offers a slightly modified version of this program known as the Provost’s Fellows Program, which features a three-year appointment. The proposal process is identical to that of the Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellows Program.


Open Postdoctoral Positions

Visit UChicago’s Academic Job Opportunities homepage to browse open listings. Click on “Search Academic Jobs” and then search for “postdoc” to view open positions.

Visit the Academic Career Opportunities page



Please refer any questions regarding this policy to Vice Provost Waldo E. Johnson, Jr. (