Guidelines to Nominate a Mentor

To promote exemplary mentorship and to formally recognize outstanding faculty mentors in our neuroscience community, we have established an award for excellence in mentorship aimed specifically at faculty in the Neuroscience MTA.

The 8th “Neuroscience Mentorship Distinction Award (NMDA)”, will be presented at the 16th annual Friedman Brain Institute Retreat on Friday April 26th, 2024!

We ask you, all Neuroscience PhD students, MD/PhD, and postdocs, for your assistance in identifying outstanding faculty mentors by nominating faculty in the Neuroscience MTA whom you think exemplify exceptional mentorship, dedication to trainee well-being, and career development and commitment to the educational mission of our institution and community.

Please consider the following as qualities to include in your nominating letter. Please provide details and specific examples when possible:

The nominee has nurtured career advancement of his or her trainees through:

  • Training grantsmanship by encouraging and aiding the drafting of training grants and proposals
  • Training scientific writing skills through guidance of manuscript preparation
  • Training oral presentation and teaching skills
  • Protection of time for non-lab related career and professional development
  • Provision of time and resources to attend conferences

The nominee has provided excellent teaching by:

  • Providing constructive, fair-minded criticism for pursuits in the laboratory
  • Encouraging intellectual curiosity
  • Supporting and engaging life-long learning

The nominee has demonstrated fundamental qualities of outstanding mentorship such as:

  • Leadership
  • Courteous responsiveness and ready availability (e.g. an “open-door” policy)
  • Effective practice of one-on-one meeting time
  • Care for mentee well-being and work-life balance
  • Support of a positive and social lab environment

Letters of nomination should support one faculty mentor and be no more than 2 pagesOnly one nominating letter per mentor will be accepted. Multiple individuals may contribute and sign onto a single letter. Note: mentors who have received the NMDA award in the previous two years are not eligible. List of awardees.

Please email your nominations as an attachment (and questions) to, no later than 5pm on Friday April 5th, 2024.  We look forward to your submission!