Prepare Application Information and Materials

Information to Prepare
  • Have the following information ready for application prompts: contact information; education; post-graduate training and skills; work and volunteer experience; publications, presentations, and grants; honors and awards.
  • Write your personal statement (in 750 words, essay form) by answering these questions:
    • How will the EIS program complement your previous training and experience?
    • Understanding that there are different topical and geographical EIS assignments, in which would you prefer to work? Why?
    • What are your career plans after graduating from the EIS program? How will EIS help you achieve them?
    • What are your prior experiences, achievements, and special skills that will enable you to perform well as an EIS officer?
    • If you are reapplying, please answer: What has changed since your previous application to make you a more suitable candidate for EIS this year?
  • Identify four people to write letters of recommendation on your behalf, following the guidelines in the next section.
  • Obtain copies of transcripts for all earned degrees.
  • Physicians, nurses, veterinarians, and allied healthcare professionals must obtain a photocopy of their active, unrestricted U.S. license to practice a clinical specialty. Veterinarians graduating between the May 22nd application deadline and July 1st will be asked to provide their U.S. license at a later date.
  • Non U.S. citizens and non-U.S. permanent residents must demonstrate English-language proficiency by submitting TOEFL scores, unless exempt as outlined in the EIS TOEFL Requirements Cdc-pdf[PDF – 2 pages].
To learn more about specific centers, institutes, and offices at CDC, visit the CDC Organization web page.

Click below to view the list of assignments for the 2017 EIS class. This may serve as a helpful reference for identifying potential topical and geographical assignments of interest.

2018 EIS Assignments Book Cdc-pdf[1.70 MB, 180 Pages, 508]

Materials to Prepare
Letters of Recommendation
  • Four letters of recommendation are required from persons familiar with your academic achievements, aspirations, personal qualities, and professional attributes.
    • Two letters of recommendation must be from persons who are not currently employed at the CDC.
    • If you received your medical degree from a U.S. institution, you must provide a dean’s letter from your medical school as one of the four letters (e.g., similar to the dean’s letter of recommendation for applying to a residency)
  • Persons writing letters should typically be current or former supervisors or professors. Avoid requesting letters from colleagues or friends.
  • Recommendations must be specific to the EIS application, written in English, placed on official letterhead, signed and dated within six months prior to date submitted.
  • Provide recommendation writers with a copy of the Instructions for Letters of Recommendation Cdc-pdf[PDF – 2 pages], and tell them to expect a system-generated email from with instructions for submitting their letter electronically.
Information for Recommendation Writers
To submit the letter of recommendation:
  • Letter should be written in English and placed on official letterhead, signed and dated within six months of application submission
  • Scan and save the letter as a PDF file
  • Once you have received the system-generated email from, click on the link provided to upload the PDF version of the letter
  • You will receive an additional system-generated email from indicating that the upload was successful

Your application requires copies of unofficial transcripts for all earned degrees or qualifying degrees in progress.

  • You will be prompted in the online application form for your college/university education, which will enable you to browse and attach a PDF version of your unofficial transcripts.
  • Transcripts must state your degree of study, courses taken, earned grades, and graduation date if the degree has been conferred.
  • When a transcript is issued by a non-U.S. institution:
    • A foreign credential evaluation is required  for all degrees for which English-language transcripts are not available. A credential evaluation service is not the same as a translation service.
    • If any academic institutions you attended are unable to issue your transcripts, you must contact the EIS program via email for further instructions.
    • All documents must be in English.
  • Transcripts and other proof of degree completion will not be returned to you.
  • Do not send high school transcripts.
Official Transcripts for New EIS Officers
  • If you are accepted into the program, CDC must receive your official transcript by January 31 of the fellowship year. Send official transcripts by mail to:

    Epidemic Intelligence Service
    Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
    1600 Clifton Rd., NE
    Mailstop V24-5
    Atlanta, GA 30329-4018

  • If your degree requires a completed thesis or dissertation, you must have defended your thesis or dissertation on or before March 31 of the year you enter EIS, and you will need to submit your transcripts with conferred degree as soon as they become available.
Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) for Non-U.S. Citizens and Non-U.S. Permanent Residents

See the EIS TOEFL Requirement Cdc-pdf[120 KB, 2 Pages, 508] to learn about the TOEFL criteria for scores and exemptions, as well as submission instructions.

  • If you are exempt from taking the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), the online application system will automatically recognize you as being exempt from this requirement. In this case, you do not need to provide TOEFL scores or an exemption letter.
  • If you are not exempt from the TOEFL requirements, you will need to upload your TOEFL scores.
  • If you feel your exemption status is incorrect, please contact the EIS program.