Awards & Honors: NSF CAREER and PECASE

The NSF is currently accepting nominations for its annual Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) program. Awardees from the CAREER program are then eligible for the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE).

These are considered Prestigious by the National Research Council (NRC).

Recent recipients of the CAREER award include notable UGA faculty members Mable Fok (2017, Engineering), Jin Xie (2016, Chemistry) and Jill Anderson (2016, Genetics).

UGA faculty members Andrea Sweigert (2017, Genetics), Joachim Walther (2016, Engineering), and Daniel Krashen (2016, Mathematics) went on to win PECASE awards after first receiving CAREER awards in 2014 and 2012, respectively.


  • BIO, CISE, EHR – July 19, 2017
  • ENG – July 20, 2017
  • GEO, MPS, SBE – July 21, 2017


About the Awards

The CAREER Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the NSF’s most prestigious awards in support of junior faculty who exemplify the role of teacher-scholars through outstanding research, excellent education and the integration of education and research within the context of the mission of their organizations. Such activities should build a firm foundation for a lifetime of leadership in integrating education and research.

Each year NSF selects nominees for the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) from among the most meritorious recent CAREER awardees. Selection for this award is based on two important criteria:

  • Innovative research at the frontiers of science and technology that is relevant to the mission of NSF
  • Community service demonstrated through scientific leadership, education or community outreach.

These awards foster innovative developments in science and technology, increase awareness of careers in science and engineering, give recognition to the scientific missions of the participating agencies, enhance connections between fundamental research and national goals, and highlight the importance of science and technology for the Nation’s future. Individuals cannot apply for PECASE. These awards are initiated by the participating federal agencies. At NSF, up to twenty nominees for this award are selected each year from among the PECASE-eligible CAREER awardees who are most likely to become the leaders of academic research and education in the twenty-first century. The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy makes the final selection and announcement of the awardees.

Award Amount

  • $400,000USD
  • Anticipated Funding Amount: $222,000,000 per year to new and continuing CAREER awards.

The minimum CAREER award, including indirect costs, will total $400,000 for the 5-year duration with the following exceptions: proposers to the Directorate for Biological Sciences (BIO), the Directorate for Engineering (ENG), or the Division of Polar Programs (PLR) must submit budget requests for a minimum of $500,000 for the 5-year duration. The PECASE award is an honorary award for all NSF recipients and does not provide additional funds. CAREER awards are eligible for supplemental funding as described in the NSF Award & Administration Guide (AAG), Chapter I.E.4.


  • NSF encourages submission of CAREER proposals from junior faculty members at all CAREER-eligible organizations and especially encourages women, members of underrepresented minority groups, and persons with disabilities to apply.
  • A PI may submit only one CAREER proposal per annual competition. In addition, a PI may not participate in more than three CAREER competitions. Proposals that are not reviewed (i.e., are withdrawn before review or are returned without review) do not count toward the three-competition limit.

Additional Eligibility Info:

A. CAREER Program

By the Directorate’s deadline for submission of CAREER proposals, proposers must meet all of the following eligibility requirements:

  • Hold a doctoral degree by the deadline date in a field supported by NSF
  • Be untenured until October 1 following the deadline
  • Have not previously received a CAREER award (prior or concurrent Federal support for other types of awards or for non-duplicative research does not preclude eligibility)

By October 1st following the deadline for submission of CAREER proposals:

  • Be employed in a tenure-track (or tenure-track-equivalent) position as an assistant professor (or equivalent title) at an accredited institution located in the U.S., its territories, or possessions, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, that awards degrees in a field supported by NSF; or
  • Be employed in a tenure-track position (or tenure-track-equivalent position) as an assistant professor (or equivalent title) at an organization located in the U.S., its territories or possessions, or the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, that is a non-profit, non-degree-granting organization such as a museum, observatory, or research lab.

Tenure-Track Equivalency – For a position to be considered a tenure-track-equivalent position, it must meet all of the following requirements: (1) the employing department or organization does not offer tenure-track positions to any new hires; (2) the employee is engaged in research in an area of science or engineering supported by NSF; (3) the employee has a continuing appointment that is expected to last the five years of a CAREER grant; (4) the appointment has substantial educational responsibilities; and (5) the proposed project relates to the employee’s career goals and job responsibilities as well as to the goals of the department or organization.

Note that PIs that are Associate Professors or in equivalent appointments, with or without tenure, are not eligible for the CAREER program.

No exemptions.


PECASE eligibility requires that the applicant be a U.S. citizen, U.S. national, or U.S. permanent resident by the time of nomination by NSF. Only recent CAREER awardees are considered as potential PECASE nominees by NSF. Although persons who have received PECASE awards through other agencies may be eligible for CAREER, they will not be eligible to be nominated by NSF for another PECASE award.


For questions or more information, contact the NSF at 1 (703) 292-5111 or

Individual directorate and division contacts can be found here: