Postdoctoral research training program

As a promising nurse scientist and emerging leader in your field, you are wise to consider embarking on postdoctoral research training. The University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Nursing can offer you an outstanding training experience as a Postdoctoral Research Associate, also called a “Niedfelt Research Fellow.” Funded by private dollars at levels commensurate with federal training grants, this is an opportunity to work with senior scientists in the dynamic research environment of a world-class health sciences university.  

Advance your career with us as you launch your program of research!  

Research opportunities:

As a fellow, you will receive:

  • Support in an individualized program from senior nurse scientist mentors within the context of UNMC’s Postdoctoral Education Program
  • Training in developing and implementing feasibility/pilot studies
  • Inclusion in your sponsors’ research team and in establishing your own line of investigation
  • Training in research and academic activities including writing for publication and grantsmanship
  • Opportunities to present at research conferences and to be networked with national colleagues in your field.

Areas of research:

Fellows select from the following areas of faculty research expertise:

  • Healthy lifestyle behaviors 
  • Cancer symptom management and survivorship 
  • Health services 
  • Symptom management and risk factor modification in cardiac care 
  • End-of-life and palliative care 
  • Family care
  • Health disparities


The postdoctoral research training program focuses on accelerating your entry into a research career and includes:

  • Developing and implementing a program of research
  • Acquiring grantsmanship skills such as written and oral communication and the art of critique
  • Preparing grant applications and experience in administering funded grants
  • Collaborating with interdisciplinary scientists from other fields
  • Training in scientific inquiry

Expected training outcomes:

  • Demonstration of research methodology skills in one area beyond the dissertation
  • Submission of research-based manuscripts for publication
  • Identification of a future line of research with collection and analysis of pilot data
  • Preparation of a proposal with planned submission to a funding agency
  • Completion of coursework as determined by sponsor and fellow
  • Completion of a web-based training program in scientific integrity

Qualifications of applicants:

If you are a doctorally prepared nurse with at least one graduate degree in nursing, have evidence of past academic achievement and scholarly productivity, have a match with a faculty sponsor and can move to the campus location of your sponsor, we encourage you to apply.  

Application process:

Contact Dr. Karen Schumacher, Director of Post-Doctoral Research Training ( to indicate interest and for discussion of potential sponsors. Co-sponsors are also available to work with fellows. With rolling admissions, you may apply at any time. 

Application materials include:

  • A letter of interest and statement of training goals
  • A detailed agreement between applicant and sponsor regarding goals, plans, and outcomes of training
  • The names and contact information of three references
  • A copy of an official transcript from your doctoral degree granting institution verifying the award of the doctoral degree

Stipend and benefits:

If selected, you will receive a living and tuition stipend and healthcare benefits; computer and technology support; a travel allowance to scientific meetings; and research support services from the College of Nursing’s Niedfelt Nursing Research Center and the UNMC Postdoctoral Research Office. The University of Nebraska Medical Center College of Nursing is committed to Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action.  

Mailing address:

University of Nebraska Medical Center
College of Nursing
985330 Nebraska Medical Center
Omaha, Nebraska 68198-5330

Meet the director of the postdoctoral research program.
Karen Schumacher, RN, PhD, is director of the Postdoctoral Research Training Program.   Dr. Schumacher's own primary research interest is family caregiving during cancer treatment. Her specific focus is on how family members develop the caregiving skills needed to provide care at home.  

Dr. Schumacher's full profile.  

Questions about the Postdoctoral program?

The postdoctoral program is an exceptional opportunity to work with senior nurse scientists with distinguished records of research funding, innovative study approach and publication of findings.

It's your path to expert grant writing, grant management, investigation and publishing skills.

Your efforts are guided and supported by research-intensive faculty mentors and the full resources of the College's Niedfelt Nursing Research Center and the UNMC Postdoctoral Research Office.