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CDC Office and LocationTwo research opportunities are currently available with the Division of Birth Defects and Infant Disorders in the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD) at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia.  

Research Project: Under the ORISE Research Participation program, this fellowship will offer the opportunity to train in the Division of Birth Defects and Infant Disorders in the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD). The ORISE participant will have the opportunity to gain experience in conducting research and surveillance activities, as well as collecting, reviewing, and analyzing epidemiologic and programmatic data. Participant will train on projects that focus on the role of prenatal exposures on pregnancy, fetal, infant, and child outcomes. Prenatal exposures of interest include, but are not limited to: COVID-19, cytomegalovirus, hepatitis C, syphilis, Zika virus, and other infectious diseases. Training will occur under the direction of an assigned Advisor/Mentor on the Emerging Threats Epidemiology and Research Team. 

Learning ObjectivesThere are several main learning objectives that this appointment could include:

  1. Gain familiarity with the Surveillance for Emerging Threats to Mothers and Babies Network (SET-NET) which includes mother-baby longitudinally linked surveillance for COVID-19, cytomegalovirus, hepatitis C, syphilis, and other infectious diseases;
  2. Gain familiarity for other Zika surveillance and research projects in the U.S. and in Colombia: US Zika Pregnancy and Infant Registry, Proyecto Vigilancia de Embarazadas con Zika (VEZ) and Zika en Embarazadas y Ninos (ZEN);
  3. Enhance skills in performing data management and analysis through the collection, review, and analysis of epidemiologic and programmatic data generated by these surveillance systems and studies, and other projects involving epidemiologic and programmatic data from emerging threats surveillance and research and other relevant infectious diseases during pregnancy and effect on infant health;
  4. Develop protocols and standard operating procedures for surveillance and research activities, leveraging existing surveillance and study platforms to capture pregnancy, birth, clinical, and developmental outcomes arising from a range of exposures during pregnancy and participate in data systems and approaches to improve quality and speed of the surveillance system;
  5. Perform literature reviews and, where needed, systematic reviews and meta-analyses to describe existing evidence of the influence of infectious diseases and other in-utero exposures on fetal, infant, and child development;
  6. Engage in CDC emergency response procedures; and
  7. Collaborate and engage other staff from the National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD), other CDC centers, institutes, or offices, other federal organizations, health departments, partners, and international health ministries and organizations.
Mentor(s)The mentor for this opportunity is Van Tong ( If you have questions about the nature of the research please contact the mentor.

Anticipated Appointment Start Date: 2022.  Start date is flexible and will depend on a variety of factors.

Appointment LengthThe appointment will initially be for one year, but may be renewed upon recommendation of CDC and is contingent on the availability of funds.

Level of ParticipationThe appointment is full-time.

Participant StipendThe participant will receive a monthly stipend commensurate with educational level and experience.

Citizenship RequirementsThis opportunity is available to U.S. citizens, Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR), and foreign nationals. Non-U.S. citizen applicants should refer to the Guidelines for Non-U.S. Citizens Details page of the program website for information about the valid immigration statuses that are acceptable for program participation.

ORISE InformationThis program, administered by ORAU through its contract with the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to manage the Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE), was established through an interagency agreement between DOE and CDC. Participants do not become employees of CDC, DOE or the program administrator, and there are no employment-related benefits. Proof of health insurance is required for participation in this program. Health insurance can be obtained through ORISE.

The successful applicant(s) will be required to comply with Environmental, Safety and Health (ES&H) requirements of the hosting facility, including but not limited to, COVID-19 requirements (e.g. facial covering, physical distancing, testing, vaccination).

Questions: Please visit our Program Website. After reading, if you have additional questions about the application process please email and include the reference code for this opportunity.


The qualified candidate should have received a master’s or doctoral degree in one of the relevant fields (e.g. Epidemiology, Public Health), or be currently pursuing one of the degrees with completion by December 31, 2022. Degree must have been received within five years of the appointment start date.

Preferred skills:

  • Good written and oral communication skills and as well as strong data management and analysis skills, with experience in SAS, R, Python, and SQL.
  • An interest in maternal and child health issues, with a particular interest in the impact of infectious disease during pregnancy, including COVID-19, cytomegalovirus, hepatitis C, syphilis, Zika virus, and STORCH pathogens.
  • Some baseline knowledge or interest in COVID-19, cytomegalovirus, hepatitis C, syphilis, Zika, or infectious disease epidemiology and the epidemiology of STORCH pathogens is highly desirable.
  • Some experience in conducting literature searches and summarizing scientific literature. 
  • Candidates with evidence of publications in peer-reviewed journals are favorable for this appointment.