Eligibility & Funding

Who should apply?

  • We welcome applications from trainees in all clinical specialties.
  • You must be eligible now to undertake clinical practice in the UK.
  • You will have completed MCRP or equivalent and are likely to have embarked upon training in a specific clinical specialty.
  • You may be close to completing or have completed an NIHR academic clinical fellowship.
  • You may have previously undertaken published research, written up case reports, and / or undertaken an intercalated BSc while a medical student.
  • You may have secured honours in your undergraduate degrees.
  • The scheme is open to applicants who are clinically active and whose research is within the Wellcome Trust remit.

  • PhD registration prior to 4ward North fellowship application: PhD registration can be a maximum of 12 months at the time of take up of fellowship (not including statutory career breaks). If the applicant is already registered and undertaking a PhD then 4ward North funding would likely be for 2 years only (3 years funding would be agreed at 4ward North’s discretion).


  • Those who secure a place on the 3-year PhD programme will become ‘Wellcome clinical PhD fellows’, a prestigious marker of esteem for a future career combining research with clinical practice.
  • For those familiar with the old national Wellcome scheme, this award replaces that funding stream, i.e. salary + pension contributions, project running costs and an annual training allowance.
  • The funding is also very similar to that offered by the Medical Research Council (MRC) for its clinical research training fellowship (CRTF) scheme.

        In addition, our successful awardees will receive:

  • a comprehensive quarterly training programme with leading clinical academics and bespoke mentoring; a personalised training plan with one of the Programme Directors;
  • an additional £2,000 per annum bursary for three years awarded after the PhD for flexible training and meeting attendance;
  • and, towards the end of the PhD, an opportunity to compete for our ‘Leading Scholars’ Programme’ in collaboration with the FCI which offers 12-months research immediately after the PhD to pump-prime postdoctoral clinical career development applications.

Selection Criteria

Selection Criteria

In stage 1 the Academy is looking for individuals who have:

  • demonstrated a clear commitment to building a clinical academic career based on their achievements and outputs from their structured CV.
  • demonstrated a vision for how a Wellcome funded Clinical PhD fellowship will support their ambitions to become a senior clinical academic in the letter of intent.

In stage 2 the Academy will judge applications for fellowships based on:

  • the quality of the proposals submitted. This will include the importance of the research question, its novelty and its translational impact. The science is expected to be of an excellent quality and the training offered to be first class.
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