Science Serving Maryland's Coasts

Competitive Graduate Research Fellowship

Wye Island at Sunrise

 

Maryland Sea Grant (MDSG) is pleased to announce the Maryland Sea Grant Competitive Graduate Research Fellowship. This is an outgrowth of our recent Coastal Resilience and Sustainability Fellowship. Students apply for a two-year Maryland Sea Grant fellowship that provides stipend, fringe benefits, and a tuition remission allowance. Due Wednesday, May 2 at 5 PM. To be eligible, graduate students must be enrolled in a graduate degree program at a Maryland academic institution and engaged in research that is relevant to Maryland and the MDSG Strategic Plan 2018-2021. In addition to financial support, these opportunities will provide additional professional development opportunities in science communication, the science-to-management process, proposal/grantsmanship, and/or other relevant skills. 

Have questions or need more information?

View our webinar held Friday, March 23.

Download the webinar slides.

Full official announcement and details of the grants program can be found here.

Eligibility

Students must be enrolled in or admitted to a full-time graduate or professional degree program at a Maryland academic institution at a graduate level. Students who have not yet enrolled should submit a letter of acceptance from the dean of the graduate program at their new institution with their application package. Students may be working toward any masters or Ph.D. degree, as long as their research is relevant to the mission and strategic plan of MDSG and has an emphasis on Chesapeake or coastal bays and their watersheds.

Award Information

The two year fellowships will provide a stipend ($25,000), fringe benefits and tuition remission for the fellow. Fellows will be paid as graduate research assistants by Maryland Sea Grant, a University System of Maryland institution, following the same model and terms as our Maryland Sea Grant Research Fellowships program. Continued support after the first year will be contingent upon satisfactory performance by the Fellow and the availability of federal funds. The anticipated start date is the fall semester 2018.

If your institution requires paying graduate students through its own payroll system, Maryland Sea Grant will provide an institutional award to cover only the $25,000 stipend, fringe benefits, and partial tuition remission up to a total of $35,000 per year. Typically, these awards would need to be made to the faculty advisor of the student. We will negotiate this arrangement with the institution of the selected students.

Requirements

Graduate student fellows who are selected will be required to:

  • Select and work with a professional outreach or end-user mentor who is an extension, education, or communication staff person or an end-user of research results (e.g., state or federal agency professional, K-12 teacher, industry partner) to ensure that results are communicated and translated for end-users;
  • Provide annual and final progress reports to MDSG, as well as electronic copies of derived publications and their thesis or dissertation;
  • Participate in MDSG-sponsored professional development activities, anticipated to be 1-3 activities;
  • Contribute one entry per semester to the MDSG student blog, Fellowship Experiences;
  • Acknowledge MDSG support in all relevant scientific presentations and publications.

At a minimum, outreach or end-user mentors are expected to periodically (no less than three times/year) meet with the fellow to reflect upon their research design, activities, and plans. They should provide guidance on issues associated with communicating the information to non-experts, advancing the information to managers or policy makers, promoting adoption of the innovation or technology, or other application of results. In some situations, outreach or end-user mentors may serve on a student’s academic committee. The exact role of the mentor is determined and defined by the applicants, in conjunction with their primary advisor.

An outreach or end-user mentor could be from the public, private, or non-profit sector. While we encourage students to explore opportunities to work with Maryland Sea Grant educators, communicators, or Extension faculty within the University of Maryland Extension program as outreach mentors, it is not required. They should be individuals in a professional situation that requires the application of scientific information and research—particularly the information, data, and findings coming from the applicant’s research project—to a pressing management or policy decision. Ideally, the mentor would directly involve the student in policy discussions and development on an issue closely tied to the student’s research. The mentor should not be an academic scientist. Maryland Sea Grant can provide assistance to prospective fellows in identifying potential mentors during the application period.

How to Apply

Full application guidelines and submission requirements can be found in the official request for applications. All applications must adhere to the official guidelines, which include:

  1. Cover Sheet (1-page maximum)
  2. Career Goal Statement (1-page maximum)
  3. Project Description (5-page maximum), including Abstract, Background and Rationale, Objectives, General Approach and Methods, Anticipated Results, Broader Impacts, and Research Team and Partners
  4. Literature Cited
  5. Timeline and Tasks
  6. Academic CV/Biosketch (2-page maximum)
  7. Undergraduate and graduate transcripts (unofficial copies are acceptable)
  8. Two Letters of recommendation (faculty advisor, professional mentor)
  9. Data Management Plan
  10. Proof of acceptance and enrollment (if needed)

Font size can be no smaller than 12 point (Arial preferred) and margins must be 1 inch on standard 8.5x11 inch paper throughout the document. For your budget and budget justification, you must use the MDSG online worksheets within the eSeaGrant application portal.

Applications must be submitted online by Wednesday, May 2, 2018 at 5:00 pm to MDSG’s proposal system, eSeaGrant. The submission system closes promptly and MDSG will not accept late proposals, so allow ample time to submit your proposal before the deadline. 

Contact

Dr. Michael Allen, Associate Director for Research and Administration
Maryland Sea Grant College
4321 Hartwick Road, Suite 300
College Park, Maryland 20740
phone (301) 405-7500
mallen@mdsg.umd.edu

Photograph, Nicole Lehming, Maryland Sea Grant