RNA Scholars Program

The RNA Bioscience Initiative supports graduate students through its RNA Scholars Program. Applicants are selected based on previous accomplishments and promise in RNA research. RNA Scholar awards provide 1-year of stipend support and a small discretionary fund; awards are not renewable. Previous support by a T32 or other award will not negatively impact eligibility.


  • Student must have completed two years of research in their PhD thesis lab AND passed their comprehensive exam as of August
  • Student’s research must have a primary focus on RNA

Required Application Components

  1. Student’s biosketch, highlighting achievements, and including a paragraph detailing progress and goals in an RNA research project
  2. Letter of recommendation from the chair of the student’s thesis committee (half-page), requested by the student, highlighting the qualifications, potential, and accomplishments of the student and their research focus on RNA
  3. Letter of recommendation from the student’s principal thesis advisor, outlining the promise of the candidate to advance RNA biology and their commitment to support the candidate by attending RBI-sponsored events, seminars and chalk talks

Selection of Awardees

  • RNA Scholar award candidates will interview with RBI faculty
  • A committee of RBI faculty members will choose final awardees based on student’s application, interview, and a review of their RNA research

Students selected as RBI RNA Scholars will receive $35,000 towards their stipend, and an additional $2,000 for educational expenses, such as a computer, research-relevant software, or travel to a meeting, conference or workshop.

Additional Requirements

Students who are selected for the RBI RNA Scholars Program are required to:

  1. Attend RBI sponsored seminars and events and present talks at an RBI sponsored events, possibly including Evenings with RNA, RNA Chalk Talks, or other RBI sponsored event
  2. Acknowledge support from the RNA Bioscience Initiative in final PhD thesis and in publications
  3. Include RNA Bioscience Initiative as an affiliation in all publications

Still have questions? Email us: rna.bioscience@cuanschutz.edu