Classifications of Postdoctoral Research Fellows

Types of Postdoc appointments at VU and VUMC

There are two classifications for postdoctoral fellows at Vanderbilt University (VU) and  Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC).  NIH institutional training grant funds and NRSA fellowship funds require the classification Research Fellow Trainee (9146, 9134).  Most, but not all, other funding agencies prohibit postdoctoral fellowship awardees from being classified as an employee. (Check with your pod grants administrator to determine these fellowship classifications)  A postdoctoral fellow who is funded by his/her mentor's research grants will be classified as a Research Fellow Employee (9145, 9132).


Stipends for Research Fellow Trainees (VU Job Code 9146, VUMC Job Code 9134)

Research Fellow Trainees (sometimes called "trainee postdocs") are paid by training grants or individual fellowships. They receive a stipend rather than a salary, are not classified as employees, and do not receive standard employee benefits. About 25% of postdoctoral fellows are "trainee postdocs."


Salaries for Research Fellows (VU Job Code 9145, VUMC Job Code 9132)

"Research Fellows (sometimes called "employee postdocs") are paid a salary from any source other than a training grant. Research Fellows are classified as employees and receive employee benefits. 

For a detailed policy on Stipends and Salaries, please visit the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs website. 

If you have further questions, please email: Faith Bishop.