Notice of a Joint Veterans Health Administration/National Cancer Institute Data Science Postdoctoral Fellowship - the Big Data Scientist Training Enhancement Program (BD-STEP)

Notice Number: NOT-CA-20-058

Key Dates
Release Date: April 28, 2020

Related Announcements

Issued by
National Cancer Institute (NCI)


Managing, analyzing, and leveraging data generated across the cancer continuum has the potential to advance cancer knowledge and improve patient care. The National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) of the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) are recruiting postdoctoral fellows for the Big Data Scientist Training Enhancement Program (BD-STEP) to increase capacity for data-driven cancer research by supporting healthcare-focused data science training. The primary goal of BD-STEP is to help develop the next generation of researchers who will be capable of using large clinical and research data sets to efficiently and effectively advance cancer research.

BD-STEP fellows will each be assigned to work at one of four VA medical centers (Boston, MA; Durham, NC; Houston, TX; Palo Alto, CA) with opportunities for collaborative work at several additional VA sites. At those facilities, they will work with clinicians, clinical scientists, and interdisciplinary researchers to address important patient-centered health challenges. While working in these unique clinical research environments, BD-STEP fellows will have valuable opportunities to utilize the extensive VA health data infrastructure.

Annually, BD-STEP anticipates awarding up to twelve 2-year fellowships with full salary and benefits.

To be eligible, each applicant must meet the following criteria:

  • Hold a Ph.D. in engineering, computer science, physical science, or relevant, related discipline;
  • Have experience in bioinformatics, modeling, and/or management of large data sets;
  • Have a strong background in advanced mathematics and statistics;
  • Have proficiency in at least one programming language; and
  • Be a U.S. citizen to receive salary and benefits.

Non-citizens are welcome to apply, but they are not eligible to receive salary and benefits through BD-STEP.

Applications should be submitted online ( and will be accepted on a rolling basis. Cohorts of fellows will launch annually in October, starting October 2020.

Additional information about the program is available at and


Please direct all inquiries to:

Michelle Berny-Lang, Ph.D.
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Telephone: 240-781-3310