Postdoctoral Fellowship Program

For a list of current postdoctoral fellows please see bottom of page


Currently Accepting 2018/19 Applications. Please Apply!

Leveraging the Influence of California's Premier Institutions to Diversify the Mathematical, Physical Sciences and Engineering

Welcome to the California Alliance Postdoctoral Fellowship Program!  This site provides applicants and potential faculty advisors information about the California Alliance’s postdoctoral fellowships, the application process, awards and tenure.

About the Program

The California Alliance offers postdoctoral research fellowship opportunities at four top-tier California institutions; UC Berkeley, UCLA, Stanford, and Caltech in the Mathematical, Physical Sciences and Engineering fields.  The program also includes faculty mentoring, professional development, and academic networking opportunities.

The California Alliance is an unprecedented partnership between the state’s top-tier institutions to increase the number of underrepresented minority mathematicians, scientist and engineers who obtain doctoral degrees, go on to pursue research at the postdoctoral level, and join the ranks of the faculty and scientific staff at competitive institutions.  The California Alliance universities are large-scale educators of STEM graduate students and postdocs as well as top producers of underrepresented scientists.

We invite applicants from across the nation to submit ONE application for consideration for a postdoctoral appointment at any of the FOUR institutions. It is also possible that applications will be considered at our partnering national laboratories. Please review the following information regarding the application and award process, and eligibility.  

Applications can be submitted online.

Applications will be accepted through mid-June 2018 for all institutions except for Caltech. All applications for Caltech are due by January 15th. Reviews will be conducted in February for applicants to Berkeley, Stanford and UCLA. Pending available funds, a final review will be held in June.

Two letters of reference are required; one recommendation from the applicant's Ph.D. advisor, and one letter of support from the applicant's proposed postdoc advisor. Letters should be sent in PDF format to Professor Mark Richards at:

Please note:  The California Alliance can only accept applications from US Citizens.  Our partner, PPFP, considers applications from U.S. Citizens, Permanent Residents, and other scholars who are legally authorized to work in the United States. These two programs have different eleigibility criteria.  Please see

Evaluation and Selection

Candidates are evaluated by faculty reviewers in their own academic fields across the Alliance. Faculty reviewers will evaluate candidates according to their academic accomplishments, the strength of their research proposal, and their potential for faculty and other competitive science careers. Faculty reviewers also may consider the applicants’ proposed mentor’s potential to work productively with the candidate and commitment to equity and diversity in higher education.  


Applicants must be U.S. citizens and belong to an underrepresented minority group (African American, Chicano/Latino, Native American/Alaskan Native and Pacific Islanders). Proposed research must fall within the the Mathematical, Physical Sciences and Engineering fields.

Faculty Mentors

Postdoctoral Fellowship mentors are faculty who are expected to (1) take an active role in helping the fellow plan and achieve his or her research goals, (2) assist the fellow in establishing a visible presence in department, (3) facilitate opportunities for the fellow to participate in national and international research meetings, (4) encourage the fellow to focus full-time on research (5) assist the fellow in seeking opportunities to present papers or to interview for faculty positions at doctoral-research intensive institutions, and (6) encourage attendance at the annual California Alliance retreat.

The program encourages mentors to meet with their postdoctoral fellows at the beginning of the fellowship to discuss their working arrangements and consider appropriate long and short-term goals for the term of the fellowship. The mentor should not expect to meet all of the fellow’s career development needs personally, but should provide an overall framework to ensure that the fellow has access to a broad academic network to support his or her work. Mentors may also play an important role in advising fellows about the academic job market and making connections to related departments at other doctoral-research extensive institutions that may be interested in the fellow for a faculty appointment.

The California Alliance community includes a vibrant cross-institutional group of faculty and administrators who are committed to fostering the goals of the Alliance.  We encourage applicants to seek out a mentor who is a good match for both research and career development. Please contact one of the following campus representatives if you would like guidance on the process of identifying potential mentors:

Host Departments

Host departments are encouraged to welcome the fellow into the department and make every effort to ensure that the fellow is included in communications about departmental colloquia, seminars and social events. Host departments are expected to provide the fellow with information about salary and benefits. Additionally, host departments are expected to provide the fellow with access to appropriate office space and routine administrative support such as departmental mail services, library access and technical support. 

Awards and Appointments

The California Alliance Fellowship Program may award up to 8 postdoctoral fellowships. The award provides postdoctoral fellows a salary of $50,000-$70,000 per year, depending on the field and level of experience, with additional funds for research and professional development. Fellows will also receive enrollment in medical, dental and basic life insurance coverage while employed as a California Alliance Postdoctoral Fellow. Each award is for a 2-year period.


California Alliance Postdoctoral Fellows are expected to (1) establish residence and participate in academic life at the campus of their postdoctoral appointment, (2) focus full-time on their research and professional development for faculty or scientific research careers, (3) meet regularly with their faculty mentor, and (4) attend California Alliance professional development programs.

For questions regarding this program or the application process, please contact us at:

Current California Alliance Postdoctoral Fellows

University of California, Berkeley:

  B.S. Yale University: Physics & Philosphy, Economics & Mathematics- 2010
  M.S. Stanford University: Physics- 2013
  M.A. Harvard University: Education Policy & Management- 2014
  Ph.D Stanford University: Physics- 2016
  Division: Astronomy
  Principal Investigator: Eliot Quataert
  Hometown: Brooklyn, NY
  Current Research Project: Observing Simulations of Jet-Accretion Disk-Black Hole Systems
  Interests & Hobbies: Gym, Travel, Popular Science, Networking.

  B.A. Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel: Physics & Chemistry- 2007
  M.A. Hebrew University: Physics- 2009
  Ph.D Hebrew University: Physics & Chemistry 


  B.S. University of California, Los Angeles: Physics- 2009
  M.S. University of California, Irvine: Physics- 2016
  Ph.D. University of California, Irvine: Physics- 2016

  B.S. Carnegie Mellon University: Electrical & Computer Engineering- 2011
  M.S. Carnegie Mellon University: Electrical & Computer Engineering- 2011
  Ph.D Stanford University: Electrical Engineering- 2016
  Division: Electrical Engineering & Computer Science
  Principal Investigator: Jeffrey Bokor
  Hometown: Knoxville, TN
  Current Research Project: Ultrafast All-Electrical Switching of Integrated Magnetic Nanoscale Memory Bits
  Interests & Hobbies: Running, cycling, cooking, reading, playing music.

  Ph.D Stanford University: Theoretical Physics- 2013
  Current Research Project:  High energy physics with an emphasis on String/M-theory and early universe cosmology.

  B.S. Southern Utah University: Chemistry- 2012
  Ph.D Purdue University: Chemistry- 2017
  Division: Chemistry
  Principal Investigator: Professor John F. Hartwig
  Hometown: Kingman, AZ
  Current Research Project: Artifical Metalloenzymes
  Interests & Hobbies: Hiking, Reading, Traveling, and Gardening.

Please see Caltech's current California Alliance Postdocs here

Stanford University:

  B.S. Texas A&M University: Chemical Engineering- 2012
  Ph.D Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Chemical Engineering- 2017
  Division: Chemical Engineering
  Principal Investigator: Zhenan Bao
  Hometown: Houston, TX
  Current Research Project: Developing new electrolytes for lithium metal and silicon anode based batteries.
  Interests & Hobbies: Playing basketball and soccer, Watching sports, Reading, Writing short stories.

  B.S. Stanford University: Civil & Environmental Engineering- 2005
  M.S. Montana Tech of the University of Montana: Project Engineering Management- 2010
  M.S. Columbia University: Earth Resources Engineering- 2012
  Ph.D Cornell University: Biological & Environmental Engineering- 2017
  Division: Earth Systems Science
  Principal Investigator: Rob Jackson
  Hometown: Pryor, MT
  Current Research Project: Water quality impacts from natural resource extraction in the arid West.
  Interests & Hobbies: AISES, mentoring, attending powwows, beading, sewing, drawing, running, hiking, & spending time with family.

  B.S. University of California, Riverside: Mechanical Engineering- 2012
  Ph.D University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign: Mechanical Engineering- 2017

B.S. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Mathematics- 2008
  B.S. Massachusetts Institute of Technology: Physics- 2008
  Ph.D University of California, Berkeley: Mathematics- 2014
  Division: Mathematics
  Principal Investigator: Ravi Vakil
  Hometown: Alameda, CA
  Current Research Project: Non abelian Hodge theory for singular Riemann surfaces.
  Interests & Hobbies: Climbing, salsa, yoga, eating, skateboarding, hiking, photography, traveling.

University of California, Los Angeles:

B.S. University of California, Davis: Civil & Environmental Engineering- 2012
  M.S. University of California, Berkeley: Civil & Environmental (Geotechnical) Engineering- 2013
  Ph.D University of California, Berkeley: Civil & Environmental (Geotechnical) Engineering- 2017
  Division: Civil & Environmental Engineering
  Principal Investigator: Dr. Scott Brandenberg
  Hometown: Lagos, Nigeria/Los Angeles, CA
  Current Research Project: Assessing the effects of deep sediment basins on ground motions.
  Interests & Hobbies: Woodworking, Basketball, Soccer (Football), American Football, Creating Music, Playing Instruments (Guitar. Piano, Flute), Investing (Stocks, Real Estate), Writing (Poetry, Books)

  B.S. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: Mathematics- 2009
  Ph.D University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: Applied Mathematics- 2016
  Division: Applied Mathematics
  Principal Investigator: Dr. Andrea Bertozzi
  Hometown: Chapel Hill, NC
  Current Research Project: Theoretical and experimental study on shear-induced migration and particle settling of bidisperse particle laden flows down an incline.
  Interests & Hobbies: Politics, traveling, photography, beach volleyball.

  B.S. University of Southern California: Astronomy- 2009
  Ph.D University of Arizona: Planetary Science- 2014
  Division: Physical Sciences
  Principal Investigators: Aradhna Tripati and Jonathan Mitchell
  Hometown: Bogota, Colombia & Bethesda, MD
  Current Research Project: Climate modeling of Earth's past and planetary atmospheres.
  Interests & Hobbies: Music, visual arts, reading, soccer.

  B.S. The University of Texas at Austin: Mechanical Engineering- 2012
  M.S. University of California, Berkeley: Mechanical Engineering- 2014
  Ph.D University of California, Berkeley: Mechanical Engineering- 2017
  Division: Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
  Principal Investigators: R. Mitchell Spearrin
  Hometown: San Antonio, TX
  Current Research Project: Chemical kinetic investigation of the combustion of fuel blends using laser absorption spectroscopy.
  Interests & Hobbies: Cycling, hiking, live music, painting.