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Postdoctoral Fellowship, National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, Maryland

Postdoctoral Fellowship in the Health Psychology and Neurobehavioral Research Program, Pediatric Oncology Branch, National Cancer Institute, National Institutes of Health (NIH) in Bethesda, Maryland.

Position Description: The Health Psychology and Neurobehavioral Research Program of the Pediatric Oncology Branch (POB) of the National Cancer Institute (NCI), NIH invites applicants for a full-time 1- to 2-year Cancer Research Training Award (CRTA) postdoctoral fellowship in health psychology to begin in the late summer to early fall 2023. The fellow will be integrally involved in the team’s extensive clinical research program that investigates the effects of diseases and treatments in children through adults with chronic medical conditions who are enrolled on medical and psychological protocols at the NIH Clinical Center.

Our diverse psychology team has a critical role in numerous NCI medical research studies, including conducting targeted neuropsychological and patient-reported outcome (PRO) assessments for patients on experimental treatment protocols that evaluate cutting-edge medical therapies for relapsed leukemia, sickle cell disease, neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1), brain tumors, and immunodeficiency syndromes, as well as comprehensive neuropsychological evaluations on natural history studies and clinical referrals of children and young adults with NF1, other RASopathies, and rare tumors. The team also develops and evaluates evidence-based psychological interventions (e.g., ACT, mindfulness) and patient-reported outcome measures using both qualitative and quantitative methods. Our research is conducted in the setting of the NIH Bethesda campus, the world’s largest research institution, at the Center for Cancer Research.

The fellow will participate in a variety of the clinical research protocols described above, depending on interest and experience, including administering assessments on clinical trials and natural history studies and conducting therapy in a randomized controlled trial evaluating an Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT) parent intervention for children with genetic syndromes. In addition, the fellow can choose from among several other projects, including intervention studies to improve sleep in adults with sickle cell disease and physical activity in children treated for brain tumors. The fellow also will conduct therapy with clinically-referred adolescents through adults with sickle cell disease, NF1, and cancer. The opportunity to work on projects through the branch’s Diversity Working Group are available.

Through these experiences, the fellow may have opportunities to participate in all aspects of clinical research process, including new protocol development, study implementation and data collection, patient assessments and therapy interventions, data analysis and interpretation, manuscript preparation, and conference presentations. Clinical referrals involve conducting ACT and mindfulness-based interventions targeting coping with illness, treatment adherence, and chronic pain. The opportunity to supervise graduate students and research assistants is available. Training and supervision of the fellow is provided by licensed psychologists in the program.

Competitive salary and benefits are offered. Applicants must have a PhD or PsyD from an APA-accredited graduate program/internship and have demonstrated research experience. Experience working with children and/or adults with medical conditions is strongly preferred. This fellowship provides an excellent opportunity for a recent graduate interested in pursuing a career involving clinical research with medical populations. Individuals from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Email a letter of interest, CV, and contact information for three references to Staci Martin Peron, PhD at Reference letters will be requested upon invitation for an interview. Applications will be accepted until November 11th.

Disclaimers: This position is subject to a background investigation. The NIH is dedicated to building a diverse community in its training and employment programs.


(This information was submitted on October 17, 2022)

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