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Postdoctoral Fellowship in Religion and Medicine/Health

The John P. McGovern, MD, Center for Humanities and Ethics (McGovern Center) at McGovern Medical School at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston invites applicants for a three-year postdoctoral fellowship in religion and medicine and/or health, from September 1, 2024, to August 31, 2027. This position is in collaboration with the Institute for Spirituality and Health at the Texas Medical Center (ISH) in Houston, Texas.

This position will require the successful candidate to engage in and help carry out the work of the McGovern Center and ISH, while encouraging their development as a medical humanist and scholar.

The McGovern Center was established in September 2004 as an integral part of The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth Houston). While housed in McGovern Medical School, the Center works closely with all six professional schools of UTHealth Houston—schools of nursing, medicine, dentistry, public health, biomedical sciences, and biomedical informatics. Educationally, the McGovern Center addresses the dehumanizing forces in contemporary healthcare by studying and teaching forms of care and research that are ethically-sound, spiritually-informed, and culturally-sensitive. The McGovern Center’s scholarship and research focus on contexts, experiences, power, meanings, ethics, and professional formation in medicine and healthcare using the methods of the humanities and the interpretive social sciences.

The Institute for Spirituality and Health at the Texas Medical Center was founded in 1955 with the mission to enhance well-being by exploring the relationship between spirituality and health. It is an interfaith, independent 501(c)(3) that does not align with a particular religious body, spiritual tradition, health system, or university—it is open to all. The Institute has an extensive history of collaborating with agencies across sectors to provide expertise in dealing with spiritual/religious belief, practice, and community life as they relate to health and healing at the individual, clinical, and systems levels. Learn more at:

Houston is the nation’s fourth-largest city, with ample intellectual, cultural, artistic, and gastronomic attractions.

Position Requirements
The successful candidate should meet the following criteria:

  • PhD in religious studies, theology, or a field related to religion and health;
  • Experience in teaching; and
  • Potential for publication in medical humanities.

The successful candidate will split their time between the McGovern Center (40%) and ISH (40%). This will include time supporting faculty members and existing programs, such as teaching in required and elective courses as well as helping with research projects. The additional 20% will be in pursuit of their own research or scholarship either independently or in collaboration with others.

The search will continue until filled. Preference will be given to candidates who apply by March 12, 2024. Fellowship will be awarded for three years, with an annual stipend of $60,000 (plus benefits) and $2,500 allowance for research and travel.

Applicants should submit a single PDF file containing a letter of interest, curriculum vitae, writing sample, and contact information for three references.

Please visit the application portal for more information about the position and the McGovern Center. Link:

Questions can be directed to Alejandro Zapata at

UTHealth Houston is committed to providing equal opportunity in all employment-related activities without regard to race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, national origin, age, disability, genetic information, gender identity or expression, veteran status or any other basis prohibited by law or university policy. Reasonable accommodation, based on disability or religious observances, will be considered in accordance with applicable law and UTHealth policy. The University maintains affirmative action programs with respect to women, minorities, individuals with disabilities, and eligible veterans in accordance with applicable law.