Excellent mentorship and training are critical to the development of exceptional future scientists. To recognize the contributions and importance of outstanding mentors, the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) has established the NINDS Landis Mentorship Award. This annual award is named in honor of former NINDS Director Dr. Story Landis. An extraordinary individual mentor, Dr. Landis generously provided her time and energy to support countless scientific investigators as they navigated the professional landscape of biomedical research.
Each year, NINDS will select up to five (5) Landis Awardees from among faculty members who have shown dedication to superior mentorship and training in neuroscience research. Awardees will receive $100,000 (direct costs), in the form of a supplement to an existing NINDS grant, to support their efforts to foster the career advancement of additional trainees. NINDS hopes this tangible award will impress upon the scientific community as a whole, and faculty and institutional leaders in particular, the high value NINDS places on training and mentorship. Further, NINDS hopes that it encourages institutions to reward individuals not only for outstanding research accomplishments but also for their impact on the lives of others, and the future of neuroscience, through outstanding mentorship and training.
Selection for this award will be based on first-hand knowledge of an individual’s influence as a mentor. Current or former trainees can nominate faculty members who served as their mentors, and nominees will then be invited to submit additional supporting information (note: faculty members should NOT solicit nominations for themselves or others who were not their direct mentors). Because outstanding mentors exist across career stages, NINDS will rotate annual requests for nominations for junior, mid-career, and senior faculty.
NINDS will consider a number of characteristics that define outstanding mentorship to guide the final selection of Landis Awardees. These include:
A Notice will be published that solicits nominations for NINDS Landis Award Candidates. Individuals will be entered into consideration when two (2) or more former or current trainees submit nominations that describe why the candidate should be considered for the award. Nominations should briefly describe what makes the nominated individual an outstanding mentor. Nominations must include specific information on professional interactions between the nominator and nominee and the career activities and/or decisions of the nominating individual that relate to mentorship and training received from the nominee. Nominations may also include any first-hand knowledge of other activities that speak to why the nominee should be considered for a prestigious mentorship award. Specific required components of nominations will be listed in the published Notice and on the Nomination Form.
NOT NS-21-077 was published on July 14, 2021. For 2022, NINDS invites nominations of outstanding mentors who are 13-20 years from the start of their first tenure-track or equivalent faculty position (i.e., the start date of their first tenure-track or equivalent faculty position was between 2001-2008).
NINDS will send a request to eligible individuals who have been nominated according to the guidelines, asking for:
NINDS will make award recommendations to the NINDS Council, based on:
Candidate(s) chosen for the award will submit an administrative supplement request for $100,000, with a description of how the funds will be used. The funds must be used in a way that directly supports the advancement of one or more trainees towards an independent research career. The supplemental funds may be used for support of current or additional trainees, trainee career development activities (e.g. short courses, trainee travel for the purposes of research presentations, etc.) or research supplies that directly benefit trainees in the laboratory. The funds cannot be used to purchase equipment or for PI salary.