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Becoming an Exoplanet Science Fellow

The Exoplanet Science Fellowship provides three years of support at STScI for promising postdoctoral researchers working on innovative scientific studies in any area of exoplanet research. The research may be theoretical, observational, or instrumental.

The Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) serves as the science operations center for the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) and the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST), and supports the archives for NASA’s Kepler/K2 and Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS) in the Barbara A. Mikulski Archive for Space Telescopes (MAST). Preference will be given to applicants who take advantage of the opportunities afforded by data from these missions.

The fellowship includes a competitive salary, generous benefits, and a budget to cover research expenses. Fellows are selected based on applicants’ accomplishments and proposed research. You must have received (or expect to receive) your PhD before the commencement of the fellowship.

Selection Criteria and Weightings

The following selection criteria and weightings will be used for all applications received before the deadline. Please tailor your application and cover letter to address these criteria to the best of your ability. Selection committees account for career length and opportunities available when scoring applications.

Proposed Exoplanet Research and Potential (40%)

STScI identifies exoplanet research as a key strategic area of development. This criterion looks at the feasibility and impact of the proposed research in an exoplanet related research field. Does the applicant have a demonstrated potential for creating a successful research program at STScI? Does their proposed research have the potential for lasting impact? Is there a feasible and technically accurate plan for the work?

Preparation and Past Research (30%)

Preparation encompasses the applicant’s education, experience, technical abilities, past research, productivity, scientific impact, and publication record.   

Leadership Potential (30%)

STScI seeks future leaders who embody the core values of the Institution, such as service, integrity, and excellence. The overall application includes evidence for the applicant’s independence, creativity, capability, grit, and potential to be a leader during their tenure at STScI or within the larger astronomical community. Special emphasis is placed on those areas that align with STScI’s strategic goals.

Application and Past Fellows

Contact Information

Have Questions?

Email requests for additional information to our team.