NHSG-SMSOE Graduate Research Fellowship

two researchers stand on a boat wearing life jackets in front of a view of water and tree-lined shoreline with fall foliage

New Hampshire Sea Grant (NHSG) and the UNH School of Marine Science and Ocean Engineering (SMSOE) Peer Mentoring Program support Graduate Research Fellowships to help build the next generation of coastal and marine scientists, engineers, extension specialists, managers, educators, policy makers and more.

Fellowship questions?

General Information

Lindsey Williams, Ph.D.
NH Sea Grant

Kai Ziervogel, Ph.D.
UNH School of Marine Science and Ocean Engineering

What do the fellowships entail? 

New Hampshire based graduate students can apply for up to $22,000** in funding to support their graduate education and research between May 2024 and May 2025 (see below for details).  These funds may be used to support summer or academic year graduate student stipend or tuition, undergraduate research assistant support to work with the graduate student, travel related to conducting research activities or engaging community groups, and/or participation in professional development/training programs.  As part of this opportunity, students enrolled in UNH are eligible to be selected as SMSOE Peer Mentor Fellows, pairing graduate and undergraduates to work together. Applicants conducting work in New Hampshire are encouraged to carefully read the NH Sea Grant strategic plan and consider how their work relates to NHSG's mission, vision, and approaches. If the applicant is proposing work outside New Hampshire, we encourage you to review the strategic plans of Sea Grant programs in the location of the work.

Graduate Fellows can also benefit from the extension and outreach capabilities of NHSG staff and our broader community of partners to build stronger connections between research and practice.  Fellows are expected to communicate their research through opportunities such as the biennial NHSG Research Symposium and/or SMSOE Seminars and will be required to submit a final report upon completion. While not required, selected Fellows are encouraged to concurrently pursue UNH Marine School Graduate Certificates. Application questions are included below as well as review criteria.

NHSG and SMSOE expect to fund three to five graduate students in the 2024-2025 cycle. 

Who's eligible?

  • Applicants and their faculty advisors / Principal Investigators (PIs) must be affiliated with an institution of higher learning or other research institution in New Hampshire with relevant research or educational capability during the award period. Only students enrolled in UNH are eligible to receive funds from SMSOE.
  • Applicants who have been accepted but have not yet enrolled in graduate study in New Hampshire may apply but are not eligible for funding support until they have enrolled. 
  • Graduate students in any discipline relevant to NHSG Focus Areas and SMSOE expertise are eligible, this includes but is not limited to biology, ecology, engineering (ocean, civil, environmental, etc.), sociology, economics, environmental education, public policy, etc.  
  • We encourage fellowship proposals from diverse applicants with regard to age, race, ethnicities, national origins, gender identities, sexual orientations, abilities, cultures, religions, citizenship types, marital statuses, education levels, job classifications, veteran status types, income, and socioeconomic status. 

This Graduate Fellowship opportunity is independent from NHSG’s Biennial Research Grant Program RFPs. 

Applicants are eligible regardless of citizenship status, this includes but is not limited to: U.S. citizens, permanent residents of U.S. states or territories, international students enrolled at U.S. institutions, etc.  

Priority will be given to student applicants who have not previously received SMSOE or NHSG Graduate Research Fellowship funding. 

Application Process

Timeline for 2024-2025:

  • Application Deadline: Applicants are encouraged to submit all materials by January 12, 2024, at 5pm via eSeaGrant and select "2024-2025 Graduate Research Fellowship (Fellowship Application)."  
  • Application review will occur in January with selection announcement anticipated in early February 2024. Download review criteria document here.
  • Earliest funding start date: May 2024
  • Latest use of funds: May 2025

Apply via eSeaGrant

Application requirements:
(Download Word or PDF document for reference only. Application must be submitted through eSeaGrant portal)

  1. Application cover sheet including:
    • Name and contact information for graduate student applicant
    • Name and contact information for faculty advisor / PI
    • Name and affiliation of committee members (if known)
    • Graduate Project title
    • Total budget request
    • Checklist question responses (see application)
  2. Proposal narrative question responses (must be written by the student applicant):
    • Provide a concise summary of the subject of the graduate student’s overall research and professional goals, and statement of the additional capacity and value the Graduate Research Fellowship funding will provide to support progression to degree and the applicant's professional goals (200 – 300 words).
    • Describe the proposed graduate student work to be supported during the fellowship (project design and methods) (700-850 words).
    • Describe connections to community or user group identified needs or questions and expected project outcomes. Include a brief explanation of how the proposed work addresses one or more of NHSG’s Strategic Plan Focus Areas and where possible how it links to NHSG Core Values and Cross-cutting Principles (if based in NH). If the applicant is proposing work outside New Hampshire, please describe how the work connects to communities in that location (for example, how it addresses the strategic plan of the Sea Grant program in that state). Please include discussion of how the proposed work advances justice, equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility in the applicant’s area of study or community (450-550 words).
  3. One-page timetable for proposed work with anticipated deliverables and/or project milestones (~May 2024 – ~May 2025).
  4. One-page proposed budget with summary table and budget justification text with a maximum request of $22,000** in direct costs. Allowable budget items include summer or academic year graduate student stipend or tuition, undergraduate research assistant support to work with the graduate student, travel related to conducting research activities or engaging community groups, and/or participation in professional developing / training programs.  The table and justification should include sufficient budget detail for reviewers to determine the appropriateness of the proposed expenses.  The budget summary should also include documentation that the proposal amounts are based on your institutions established rates for graduate student pay.  
    **Proposals up to $25,000 will be considered in cases where the higher amount is needed to cover required minimum stipend rates.  Please contact us at NHSG.Fellowships@unh.edu prior to submission if you have any questions about allowable expenses.   
  5. A 2-3 page resume/CV.

If selected for funding, additional budget and environmental compliance documentation will need to be submitted by the applicant and advisor/ PI prior to the release of funds. 

FOSTERING A SAFE AND WELCOMING COMMUNITY: NHSG is committed to building inclusive research, extension, communication, and education programs that serve people from diverse backgrounds, circumstances, needs, perspectives, and ways of thinking. Diversity includes, but is not limited to, age, disability and/or health status, ethnicity, gender identity, geographic origin, nationality, race, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, and/or veteran status among others. NHSG does not tolerate any form of misconduct, discrimination or harassment, including sexual harassment, or sexual misconduct (e.g. sexual assault within its organization, at awardee organizations, field sites, meetings, or anywhere NHSG-funded research, outreach and education are conducted).