Grass Fellowships at the Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL) in Woods Hole, Massachusetts, USA, support investigator-designed, independent research projects by scientists early in their careers.


The duration of the program is 14 weeks starting Memorial Day Monday. Fellows function as an intellectual and social group within the MBL scientific community while sharing space in the Grass Laboratory. In a weekly private seminar series, eminent investigators at the MBL discuss their work with the Fellows. In addition, a yearly Forbes Lecturer will spend a portion of the summer in the Grass Lab interacting with Fellows. Grass Fellowships provide research support including a stipend, laboratory space, animals, equipment and supplies for one summer at the MBL. Additionally, the investigator, his/her spouse or legal domestic partner, and dependent children are provided housing and round-trip travel to the MBL.

Research Areas

The overarching goal is to identify early-career scientists who envision the future of neuroscience, and support, catalyze, and advance their visions with a unique set of resources. Successful applicants often take advantage of the model organisms available through the MBL’s Marine Resource Center (MRC). Supported approaches include neurophysiology, biophysics, integrative neurobiology, neuroethology, neuroanatomy, neuropharmacology, systems neuroscience, cellular and developmental neurobiology, and computational approaches to neural systems. The Foundation has a longstanding interest in epilepsy-related research. Comparative and integrative neuroscience have been of particular interest in recent years. Anthropogenic environmental impacts – including climate change, chemical and sensory pollution, and ocean acidification – may impact brain at the cell and circuit level in ways that are not well understood. In partnership with the Grass Foundation, The Kavli Foundation supports Grass Fellows who explore this area through their research related to neurobiology and changing ecosystems. (Learn more about the partnership and the first two years of Kavli-Grass Fellows.)

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