Three PFTF fellows proudly show their certificate of completion


Professors for the Future is a competitive, professional development and leadership program for graduate students and postdoctoral scholars at UC Davis.

Each year we select 15 Ph.D. candidates and postdoctoral scholars to participate in this yearlong fellowship.

We encourage Ph.D. candidates and postdoctoral scholars of any discipline and background who have demonstrated a commitment to professionalism, integrity and academic service to apply.

Through PFTF you will:

  • Enhance your leadership and professional skills
  • Learn more about the university system
  • Gain insider’s knowledge of the nuances of academia as an institution
  • Develop and execute a project that benefits the graduate community at UC Davis

You must be currently enrolled as a Ph.D. candidate or employed as a postdoctoral scholar (title codes: 3252, 3253, 3254, 3255, 3256) at UC Davis to be eligible. (You must have advanced to PhD candidacy by the application deadline or you must be a current UC Davis postdoctoral scholar from the start of the program and throughout the fellowship year.)
You also must attend all required PFTF meetings, retreats, courses and reception.

(See the schedule of PFTF events)


PFTF Information Session

Tuesday, January 30, 2024 - 12-1pm - Gibeling Conf. Room, Walker Hall

Register here! (1-click registration)

All Ph.D. students and postdoctoral scholars are cordially invited to join PFTF co-directors Ellen Hartigan-O’Connor, Associate Dean, and Millie Copara, Director of GradPathways Institute, and current PFTF fellows for this informational meeting about the PFTF program.

To apply for this competitive fellowship,
follow these steps:


1. Fill out this application form.

Be sure to include your:

  • Potential for leadership and academic service
  • Commitment to the academy and scholarly pursuits
  • Contributions to diversity, equity, and inclusion
  • Desire to contribute to graduate education and/or postdoctoral training by designing and completing a project beneficial to other students and scholar

2. Obtain a recommendation

Obtain a recommendation using this recommendation form. Recommendations must be submitted online by the person making the recommendation.

Important Note: If you are a graduate student, your recommendation must come from your major professor; if you are a postdoctoral scholar, the recommendation must come from your current principal investigator.

Application Timeline
  • January 2024: PFTF application process opens.

  • January 30, 2024: PFTF Information Session - 12-1pm in Gibeling Conference Room, Walker Hall. 

  • DEADLINE is extended to Friday, March 8, 2024 at 11:59pm - PFTF application process closes.

  • Spring Quarter: PFTF fellows selected. A new class of PFTF fellows is announced.

Contact Us

  • Office Phone: 530-754-1457
  • Email: