Working and Living at the National Institutes of Health

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is like a large university campus whose purpose is medically related research, administration and education. It is home to thousands of Ph.D.s and M.D.s, as well as post-doctoral fellows, graduate students, visiting scientists and technicians. It provides all of the resources and facilities required to support a wide assortment of research needs. NIH scientists are encouraged to attend at least one professional meeting per year and to participate in NIH sponsored events that showcase their research. Travel expenses are provided by the NIH. Research results are published in international journals and considered for patent approval. There is an abundance of weekly seminars by scientists from throughout the world on a wide diversity of subjects. Affordable health insurance is available. Salaries are equivalent to those at major universities and research institutes throughout the USA.

At the NIH, YOU are the rate limiting step in your research and education.

The NIH is located 10 miles outside of our nation's capital, Washington DC, in Bethesda, Maryland. Bethesda and its neighboring areas offer an excellent selection of affordable housing, public parks, first rate schools, endless shopping and great recreational facilities. Public transportation includes a modern Metro rail system and a bus system. Because we are near the Atlantic Ocean and lie on the same latitude as Rome, Italy, we enjoy extended periods of Spring and Autumn, a mild Winter, and a warm Summer. We have far more sunny days than rainy ones.

Washington DC is home to the largest collection of public buildings and museums you will ever encounter, and you can visit them all free of charge. In addition, there is theater, movies and sports of all kinds. If you still cannot find what you are looking for, then take the train to Baltimore (1 hour), or Philadelphia (2 hours), or New York City (3.5 hours). Or you can drive to the Atlantic Ocean for a day at the beach (2 hours away) or to the Appalachian mountains (1 hour away) to go hiking or skiing. A sense of history is everywhere, from the American Revolution to the Civil War to the development of our government and political system.

In an article titled "A Creative Crossroads" by Richard Florida, "The Washington Post" (May 7, 2006) reported that:

The greater Washington DC metropolitan area

  • has the largest science and engineering work force in the USA.
  • has the greatest percentage of people with advanced degrees in the USA
  • is one of the world's 10 most important cities in economic activity
  • has one of the most diverse populations among cities in the USA
  • residents boast the highest level of satisfaction with their work, and the second highest level of satisfaction with their personal lives of any city or region surveyed in the USA

To learn more about the NIH, go to "".

To learn more about the DC Metropolitan Area and the State of Maryland, go to "" .

To learn more about issues such as appointments, housing, driver's license, parking, taxes, training courses, medical service, child care, etc., download a PDF copy of the 'NIH Postdoc Handbook' at (PDF 10.5 MB)

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