Symptom Science Program Director Position Available

Date Posted

Office of the Director, Division of Cancer Prevention

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) is seeking a Program Director to lead an innovative portfolio of research focused on symptom management, palliative care, and quality of life research within the Division of Cancer Prevention (DCP). Scientific topics include the rapidly growing areas of research on cancer symptom science, including foundational research on the underlying biology of cancer- and cancer treatment-related symptoms; quality of life and toxicities from cancer and cancer treatment; palliative and end-of-life care; and patient-reported outcomes. The position will focus on identifying NCI research priorities and gaps to move the field forward and communicate the state of the science to the clinical and scientific community.

A new generation of clinical trials, using advanced technology to characterize cancers to enhance current knowledge of their biological mechanisms, requires expertise in symptoms, quality of life, and patient-reported outcomes to determine health outcomes. The symptom management portfolio consists primarily of phase II and III trials and provides opportunities for biomarker, quality of life, and imaging studies to promote an understanding of the underlying mechanisms for interventions to ameliorate symptoms and improve patient outcomes.

Qualified candidates will have appropriate academic research experience as a physician, research nurse, Ph.D. investigator, or similar. Candidates must have a broad and inclusive knowledge of the scientific field, skills to lead and summarize scientific discussion and review critiques, the ability to manage multiple projects simultaneously, and communication skills to represent the program and NCI nationally and internationally. Recognition as a leader, documented by receipt of awards from professional societies for outstanding work in the field and a track record of peer-reviewed scientific publications, is desired. The incumbent will have knowledge of grants administration, federal policies, and guidelines, and the ability to provide and direct major program areas in clinical and translational research.

The position is in the DCP Office of the Director in Rockville, MD, and will work closely with the Community Oncology and Prevention Trials Research Group (COPTRG), which houses the NCI Community Oncology Research Program (NCORP) in which much of DCP-supported research on symptom science and management is conducted. NCORP is a national research network bringing cancer prevention, control, and care delivery studies to people in their communities.

Interested applicants should submit a letter of interest, a CV, and two representative publications to Dale Engels ( This announcement is for a career position with the U.S. government and requires U.S. citizenship.