Steadman Awards

The Steadman Family Postdoctoral Associate Prize in Interdisciplinary Research provides a monetary award recognizing outstanding postdoctoral associates or postdoctoral fellows at the University of Rochester whose research exemplifies the importance of multiple perspectives and/or cross-disciplinary approaches toward examining high impact questions of society.

Eligibility and Prizes

Candidates must be a current postdoctoral associate or postdoctoral fellow at the University of Rochester. Candidates from all areas of the University of Rochester are welcome to apply.

Finalists will be selected to participate in a three-minute oral presentation to a panel of judges at the Steadman Prize presentation during National Postdoc Appreciation Week.


  • Steadman Award - $2,000
  • Award for Interdisciplinary Research - $750
  • Award for Innovative Research - $750

How to Apply

Applications for the 2024 Steadman Awards will open around August 2024.

Please direct any questions to

Previous Steadman Awards

The Steadman Family Awards is an event held every year during National Postdoc Appreciation Week where postdocs present their research in three minutes to a panel of judges and an audience of the University community. Competitors had only three minutes and two slides to convey their work in plain language during the event.

2023 Award

Dr. Steadman and the award winners smiling at the camera.
Dr. Steadman along with the 2023 Steadman Award Winners

The 2023 $2,000 Steadman Family Postdoctoral Associate Prize in Interdisciplinary Research was given to Christina Heil, who holds a joint postdoc position in the labs of John Lueck and Charles Thornton. Heil uses “genetic engineering and molecular biology techniques combined with bioinformatics analysis” to investigate the neuromuscular disease myotonic dystrophy, for which there is no cure.

In addition, the Award for Innovative Research of $750 was given to Fanju Meng, a postdoc in the biomedical genetics lab of Patrick Murphy. Meng investigates the effects of toxicants on gene expression in developing embryos by “bridging developmental biology, environmental toxicology, and epigenetics.”

The Award for Interdisciplinary Research of $750 went to Damian Sowinski, a postdoc in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, who considers “how agency emerges from the physical substrate of the world, a question of profound importance to humanity’s understanding of itself and the biosphere it is a part of.”

A group photo of all of the finalists.
All postdoc presenter finalists