Good News

NIDA has officially renewed the BST program for another 5 years, as of July 1, 2019. This begins our 36th year training Predoctoral and Postdoctoral Fellows specializing in research on substance use.     Regards, Greg


MISSION: This fellowship program supports behavioral scientists from all disciplines interested in learning about and developing careers in advanced research in the area of drug use and misuse.

OUR PROGRAM: The Behavioral Sciences Training in Drug Abuse Research (BST) program at NYU Rory Meyers College of Nursing is the largest and oldest training program for behavioral scientists funded by the National Institute on Drug Abuse since 1984. It provides intensive training to 16 fellows (9 predocs and 7 postdocs)—about half of whom are minorities—from the various behavioral disciplines (including public health, social work, psychology, criminal justice, sociology as well as nursing). They work in a mutually supportive milieu to gain hands-on experience conducting research, build their publication records and write grants for outside funding. Fellows specialize in a wide range of topics, such as drugs among college students, doping in sports, drugs and crime, HIV risk factors and interventions, drug treatment, politics and drug policy, international research. BST is directed by Drs. Gregory Falkin and George De Leon, both experts in the area of drug treatment. To read an article written by one of our former postdocs that describes the BST program, click here.

RESEARCH OPPORTUNITIES: BST fellows have the opportunity to gain experience on dozens of NIDA grants at two main research centers. The BST program is affiliated with the NIDA-funded Center for Drug Use and HIV/HCV Research, one of the nation’s premiere research centers focused on substance use and infectious diseases. BST is also affiliated with National Development and Research Institutes, Inc. (NDRI) a free-standing research center specializing in drug abuse research and training.

Distinguishing Features of Our Training

  • Intensive Training—fellows meet as a group all day every Monday year round in various seminars.
  • Supervised research—both pre- and postdoctoral trainees are mentored on CDUHR grants. Fellows choose the projects they are interested in working on.
  • Independent research—predoctoral dissertations and postdoctoral independent studies.
  • Grant Writing—postdocs are expected to submit grants to become independently funded scientists.
  • Mentorship—all fellows are mentored by the Principle Investigators of the grants they apprentice on and receive considerable guidance from the program directors as well as from their peers in the program.


  • Former Fellows—BST has trained over 200 pre- and postdocs—nearly half racial/ethnic minorities.
  • They teach at universities all around the country and in some foreign countries, and work in public health and other government agencies, private sector research and NGOs.
  • Publications—number about 1,000 articles and chapters based on work they did while in BST.
  • Grants—former fellows have become PIs on over 30 NIH grants and Co-investigators on another more than 40 NIH-funded projects, and recipients of well over an additional 100 grants from other funders.
  • Leaders—BST alumni have sat on review groups at NIDA and other Federal agencies, and many have served in leadership positions in professional societies and as journal reviewers and editorial board members.