When he assumes the presidency of the Rockefeller University next month, molecular biologist David Baltimore will be faced with the task of assessing the university's programs in the biomedical and related behavioral and physical sciences. One of the areas targeted for evaluation by Baltimore is the University Fellows Program, in which exceptional young scientists are recruited to head their own research groups and are given the title of assistant professor at the university.

The program gives these scientists funding to pursue ground-breaking research "in fields not already represented at the university," according to Rodney W. Nichols, executive vice president at Rockefeller. The resulting "intellectual diversification" is one of the program's main objectives, Nichols says.

Young investigators selected as University Fellows are offered a unique opportunity at Rockefeller, an institution whose administrative structure is organized around laboratories rather than academic departments. Because they are given their own labs, the fellows do...

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