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The William P. Van Wagenen Fellowship

The William P. Van Wagenen Fellowship was established by the estate of Dr. Van Wagenen, one of the founders and the first President of the Harvey Cushing Society, now the AANS.

In considering what permanent contribution he might make to neurosurgery, Dr. Van Wagenen chose to support foreign travel for scientific enrichment. The Van Wagenen Fellowship was designed to give freedom in scientific development without the restrictive limitations usually imposed by many research grants and fellowships.

William P. Van Wagenen fellows are provided with:

  • Up to $120,000 stipend for living and travel expenses to a foreign country for a period of 12 months;
  • A family travel and living allowance of $6,000 if spouse and/or children are accompanying the fellow;
  • $15,000 of research support for the university, hospital or laboratory sponsoring the fellow; and
  • If needed, $5,000 for medical insurance.

Check back in August for more information on applying for future Van Wagenen Fellowships.

Application should be submitted with letters of reference, including one from the applicant's program director. A letter from the proposed sponsor and documentation of intent to pursue an academic career, while not required, will strengthen the application.

The Van Wagenen Selection Committee will consider the originality and quality of the applicant's proposal, the thoroughness with which the plan for a period abroad has been designed, personal attributes and the quality of the research environment. Recommendations from the candidate's previous sponsors and fellowship sponsors are important.


Since the original fellowship was awarded in 1968, more than 50 recipients have used the Van Wagenen Fellowship to advance their research and their careers abroad. Click below for a listing of past Van Wagenen Fellows, along with summaries of their fellowships and career accomplishments.


For questions about this AANS fellowship offered through the Neurosurgery Research & Education Foundation (NREF), please contact our office at 847.378.0500 orr

If you would like to make a donation to the William P. Van Wagenen Fellowship Fund, please visit and select "Van Wagenen" from the Donation Option list.


Grants and Fellowships