Graduate Student Research Awards Proposal Guidelines

Guidelines and Policy for Submitting Project Proposals

Upon recommendation of the Endowments Committee of the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, the Department has established competitive student research award of up to $5,000 for its full-time Ph.D. students.

Program initiation: Academic Year 2011-12.

Eligibility: PhD students in good standing are eligible for a one-time award during their 1st through 5th years.

Funds: Up to $5,000 award per student. Students may receive one award during their appointment in the Department. Funds should be expended within one calendar year after the award unless the research project itself extends over multiple years, such as a field observational data gathering projects. All funds must be expended or returned to the department before the thesis defense date. Contact Yasmin Yabyabin (x8550) or Sally Odland (x8633) with questions.

Budget considerations: The awards can be used to fund analyses, instrumentation, fieldwork travel and expenses, and expenses related to conducting the proposed research. Funds cannot be used for salaries, travel or expenses for off-campus meetings, or computers.

Project Guidelines: This research award program is designed to encourage Department Ph.D. students to develop projects that will expand the scope and impact of their dissertation research. Successful research awards present a contained project that is innovative and new that represents a clear new dimension or approach to the student’s dissertation research. Projects that request support for additional analyses, travel, or resources for work that is essentially an extension of the planned research will not be competitive. These awards are designed to encourage you to “think outside the box” to explore new ideas and applications of your research.

Proposal Deadlines: March 15 and October 15 of each academic year. Completed proposals should be submitted as PDF files to Sally Odland ( before 5PM. We anticipate making 4 awards per academic year.

Proposal Format: Project descriptions, including figures and budget information, should be 2 pages in length (1.5” margins, single spaced). References and budget justification information (if needed) are additional.

  • Abstract (100-200 words)
  • Summary of Current Student Dissertation Research (100-200 words)
  • Proposed New Research (including Figures, Tables)
  • Itemized Budget
  • References

Selection Criteria: The Department Chair will select a project evaluation committee who will read, prioritize, and award proposals. Proposals that have the highest chances of being funded will describe innovative research that significantly builds upon the student’s dissertation or presents novel applications or opportunities that are beyond the planned scope of the dissertation research.