NLM logo

About the Associate Fellowship Program

The National Library of Medicine Associate Fellowship offers an insider’s view of the world’s largest medical library.

The National Library of Medicine Associate Fellowship is:

  • A one-year residency program (with an optional second year) for recent library science graduates interested in a career in health sciences librarianship
  • A program combining curriculum and project work
  • Located at the National Library of Medicine on the campus of the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland

The Associate Fellowship provides knowledge and skills in project work ranging from:

  • Data analysis of programs and services such as extramural grants, indexed journal articles, controlled vocabularies, datasets, and customer inquiries
  • Creation of online tutorials and educational awareness videos
  • Social media outreach
  • And more, including legislative tracking, web site enhancement, disaster information outreach studies, and review of next generation discovery interfaces

The Associate Fellowship offers opportunities for professional development through:

  • Participation in lectures, exercises, conferences, short and extended visits to other health sciences libraries
  • Workshops on work style, resume review, negotiation, and presentation skills
  • Mentorship from a program coordinator and NLM staff who serve as preceptors

The Associate Fellowship’s benefits are:

  • Annual stipend of $57,510
  • Additional funding to support purchase of group health insurance
  • Up to $1,500 in relocation support
  • Full support for attendance at local and national conferences


Program Coordinator

Kathel Dunn, PhD

Kathel Dunn was named Associate Fellowship Coordinator at the National Library of Medicine in 2008. In this position she is responsible for oversight of the Associate Fellowship Program curriculum, recruiting for the Program, and providing mentorship and guidance for the Associate Fellows throughout their year at NLM. Dr. Dunn also leads the Workforce Development efforts in Library Operations within NLM, including succession planning, leadership programs, and staff development.

Prior to joining NLM, Dr. Dunn served as the Associate Director of the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Middle Atlantic Region based at New York University Medical Center. Before joining the National Library of Medicine, she held several senior management administrator positions in Public Services at Ehrman Medical Library, New York University Medical Center; and as Director of Library Services and Associate Director, Division of Information Management at the New York Academy of Medicine.

Dr. Dunn received her PhD from the School of Communication, Information and Library Studies at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey; her Master of Science, Library Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her undergraduate degree in History from Mary Washington College in Fredericksburg, Virginia.


Program Administrator

The Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), managed and operated by Oak Ridge Associated Universities (ORAU), administers this program for the National Library of Medicine through an interagency agreement with the Department of Energy.

Last Reviewed: October 22, 2018