The TL1 program equips its Fellows with enhanced knowledge, skills, and abilities that provide a broad introduction to clinical and translational research concurrent with their current pre- or postdoctoral research program. The goal of the fellowship is to enhance career development beyond that encountered in traditional pre- and postdoctoral programs by focusing on the knowledge and expertise needed to conduct translational team research across disciplines. Fellows gain a broader understanding of challenges and opportunities in translational science as well as a deeper knowledge of the extensive research, professional, and technical resources within NJ ACTS and the national CTSA consortium designed to support and further their professional learning. Questions? Please email

NJ ACTS TL1 Fellows

Ellen Acosta (2020), Predoc

The spatiotemporal dynamics of the human skin microbiome in health and disease
Preceptor: Gitai/Princeton

Andrew Boreland (2020), Predoc

A Human Stem Cell-derived Brain Organoid Platform for HIV-1 Virus-Host Interactions
Preceptor: Pang/Rutgers

Alexandra Burr (2020), Predoc

A dynamic gene therapy for hypoparathyroidism
Preceptor: Parekkadan/Rutgers

Shane Neibart (2020), Predoc

Non-Infectious Pneumonitis in Advanced Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer: Is There an Interaction Between Immune Checkpoint Inhibition and Radiotherapy?
NJ ACTS fellow as a UL1

Jennifer Miles (2020), Postdoc

Medication and Residential Treatment for NJ Medicaid Beneficiaries with Opioid Use Disorder: Implementing Evidence-based practices in Addiction Treatment
Preceptor: Crystal/Rutgers

Susan Leggett (2020), Postdoc

The effects of cell-level heterogeneity on cancer invasion and metastasis
Preceptor: Nelson/Princeton

Camden MacDowell (2020), Postdoc

Understanding Thalamic Control of Information Flow in the Brain and Mechanisms of Therapeutic Thalamic stimulation
Preceptor: Wang/Princeton; Advisor: Buschman/Princeton

Chloe Cavanaugh (2019), Predoc

Mechanism and potential therapeutic inhibition of HCMV-induced telomerase activation
Preceptor: Notterman/Princeton

Bassel Ghaddar (2019), Predoc

Single cell genomic characterization of the pancreatic tumor and metastatic microenvironment and clinical associations
Preceptor: Ganesan/Rutgers

Caleb LoSchiavo (2019), Predoc

Human papillomavirus prevention, screening, knowledge, and risk among transgender individuals in New Jersey
Preceptor: Halkaitis/Rutgers

Courtney McDermott (2019), Predoc

Identification and functional assessment of mTOR and cytoskeletal pathways in idiopathic and 16p11.2 autism neural precursor cells
Preceptor: DiCicco-Bloom/Rutgers

Alex Yonk (2019), Predoc

The role of POm in striatal circuitry modulation
Preceptor: Margolis/Rutgers

Thomas Zajdel (2019), PhD, Postdoc

Programming cell migration for wound healing
Preceptor: Cohen/Princeton

Become a TL1 Fellow

Program information, application process, and award provisions
  • Fellows will develop an Individual Development Plan (IDP) to guide training and acquisition of translational science knowledge and skills
  • Fellows will participate in a Core Curriculum comprised of courses appropriate to their research and level of training. Training includes required and elective didactic programs, seminars/workshops, and other career development offerings
  • Participation in the program requires a total commitment of 3 years
  • A required Core Curriculum is based on an expectation that a number of core competencies will be achieved
  • The Core Curriculum will require an average of 10-15% of the fellow’s time during each year of the 3-year training period, requiring an additional 2-4 courses beyond the fellow’s prior coursework
  • A variety of experiential learning opportunities will also be available (e.g., shadowing clinicians, participating in computational studies, community outreach) and a minimum of 24 of these contact hours (3 days) are required
  • Fellows are expected to publish their findings in well-respected scientific journals and prepare applications for fellowships and/or independent funding prior to program completion
  • The TL1 award provides each fellow with one year of support that includes stipend/salary and benefits, tuition (for participation in CTST coursework), funds for professional travel and research-related expenses.

For more information on eligibility criteria, application instructions, and Fellow evaluation, please read the NJ ACTS TL1 Fellowship Program RFA (.pdf)

For other information please email

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Mentoring resources

Mentors and sponsors play a critical role in the success and formation of early career researchers. Best practices for mentors as well as mentees help support and cultivate quality mentorship.

Making the Right Moves: A Practical Guide to Scientific Management for Postdocs and New Faculty
The Burroughs Wellcome Fund and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute have compiled a book based on a number of their workshops. Mentorship is the focus of Chapter 5, but the remaining chapters contain a plethora of information for early career investigators.

Nature‘s guide for mentors
Helpful tips from for both mentees and mentors.

Advancing institutional efforts to support research mentorship
Paper (Keyser et al.) on fostering mentorship on institutional and organizational levels.

Program content and resources for trainees and mentors

 NJ ACTS Fellowship Application 2020 (.pdf)
Please use this form to apply to become a 2020 NJ ACTS Fellow

NJ ACTS Academy of Mentors 2020 (.pdf)
The NJ ACTS Academy of Mentors comprises faculty from Rutgers, Princeton, and NJIT, each recognized for their expertise in key clinical/translational disciplines, each demonstrating their commitment and passion to clinical/translational research and to the education and training of the next generation of clinical/translational sciences.

Coming soon:

Link to digital resources on restricted access platform, e.g. Canvas

Link to password-protected access for application reviewers to access applications and provide reviews

Link to the assessment tool (Redcap?) for trainees to access

Funding Opportunities

TL1 awards support students seeking a practical introduction to clinical and translational research. TL1 awards support full-time research training support for predoctoral candidates and combined health-professional doctorate-master’s candidates as well as postdoctoral fellows seeking additional training in clinical research.

TL1 Fellowship Program 2020
NJ ACTS TL1 Fellowship Program RFA

NJ ACTS Fellowship Application
Letter of Intent due June 19, 2020
Application due July 3, 2020 by 5pm

Personal Statements

Chloe Cavanaugh: “The training provided by the core curriculum grant writing and team science courses augment my communication and interpersonal skills to improve my ability as a scientist and educator.”

Bassel Ghaddar: “The opportunities and encounters I will have through the CTSA will not only help my PhD but will provide long term perspective and real-life examples of the careers physician-scientists can achieve.”

Caleb LoSchiavo: The education and skills I gain through the CTSA training program will support my ongoing research interests, allowing me to design and implement research programs focusing on sexual and gender minority health, the results of which will be translated into recommendations for evidence-based prevention, treatment, and policy interventions.”

Courtney McDermott: “The CTSA program will add value to my graduate training because it will challenge me to implement clinical and translational aspects into my research, which is critical for autism research that impacts affected individuals and families.”

Alex Yonk: “Movement disorders are a major health problem worldwide, yet the underlying neural circuitry is not well understood. I’m focused on investigating a thalamic input that modulates the mammalian striatum, a brain area crucial for sensorimotor integration and behavioral choice. I plan on using the experiences I gain in this program towards translating these fascinating basic research results in clinical settings, specifically towards movement disorders such as Parkinson’s Disease and Huntington’s Disease.”

 Thomas Zajdel, PhD: “As an engineer, it is essential to know the user that I am designing for and the CTSA program will provide this vital context about clinical practice.”

Cite it, Submit it, Share it!

Citation guidelines for trainees

If you are a trainee, please cite our CTSA training grant in any relevant publications, abstracts, chapters, and/or posters. As per the award notice, each publication, press release, or other document about research supported by an NIH award must include an acknowledgment of NIH award support and a disclaimer such as the following:

“Research reported in this publication was supported by the National Center For Advancing Translational Sciences of the National Institutes of Health under Award Number TL1TR003019. The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of the National Institutes of Health.”

Please submit your publications to PubMed Central in compliance with the NIH Public Access policy.

You can share your research updates with us by sending an email to

Workforce Development Pages and Links

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TL1 Predoctoral/Postdoctoral Awards

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