Early-Career Investigator Travel Awards


Early-Career Investigator Travel Awards (ECITA)


The ECITA initiative aims to increase the success of early-career investigators from underrepresented (see eligibility below) backgrounds at the assistant professor or industry, government, non-profit, etc., scientist equivalent level. Attendance at top tier scientific conferences is critical at this career stage, enabling the emerging researcher to:

  • establish new collaborations
  • gain exposure for their research
  • network informally with colleagues
  • meet with prospective postdoctoral candidates
  • invaluable career-advancement opportunities

In an effort to expand these opportunities for early career investigators, Keystone Symposia in partnership with the Burroughs Wellcome Fund will provide $1,200 ECITAs to help defray conference expenses for the recipient. Funds may be used for registration, ground/air transportation, and lodging for attendance at a Keystone Symposia conference held within the upcoming season.

In addition, the ECITA program includes a mentorship component to build strong community support among underrepresented scientists and foster diversity across career-stages. ECITA awardees will commit to mentor at least one trainee during the upcoming year, to cultivate diversity within the life-sciences workforce for generations to come.

Apply Here

Eligibility Requirements


Applicant must meet ALL of the following eligibility requirements.

  • Must be a US Citizen or US Permanent Resident
  • Applications must be from populations that have been shown to be underrepresented in biomedical research, such as:
    • Underrepresented racial and ethnic groups: African American/Black, Hispanic/Latino, Native American/Alaska Native, or Hawaiian Native/Natives of the U.S. Pacific Islands, or;
    • Individuals with disabilities: defined as those with a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities, as described in the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, or;
    • Individuals from disadvantaged/underserved backgrounds: defined as individuals from an economically disadvantaged background, first generation college graduates, or individuals from challenging social, cultural or educational background, or;
    • Women in the biomedical workforce, or;
    • Individuals with a demonstrated commitment to diversity and inclusion efforts in the scientific community.
  • Applicant must be an assistant professor or industry, government, non-profit, etc. scientist equivalent level, who are no greater than six (6) years into their appointment and engaged in full-time laboratory research.
  • Applicant must commit to mentoring a trainee from one of the underrepresented populations above for a one (1) year period beginning after attendance at the research meeting of interest.

Review Criteria


  1. Abstract and research is of relevance to meeting topic and reflects significant scientific contribution to the field.
  2. Applicant's participation will have a significant impact on the applicant and his or her career/institution, e.g. initiation of new collaborations, etc.
  3. Applicant expresses clear dedication to mentorship and leadership of underrepresented scientists.
  4. Applications should be received prior to the abstract deadline for the selected meeting (deadlines can be found on the conference meeting page), so the applicant can be considered for a short talk presentation. Applications received after this deadline may only be considered for a poster presentation.

Apply Here

Please contact DLSP@keystonesymposia.org with any questions.