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The Mendenhall Research Fellowship Program provides an opportunity for postdoctoral fellows to conduct concentrated research in association with USGS scientists, often as a final element to their formal career preparation.

The Program also provides: 1) research experiences that enhance the scientific stature and credentials of the Fellows; and 2) scientific expertise to assist in the implementation of the USGS Strategic Plan and the science strategy of its programs. Mendenhall Fellows are expected to publish their results in peer-reviewed scientific outlets.


In order to be considered for a Mendenhall Fellowship, candidates must:

  1. Meet Ph.D. degree requirements no earlier than 5 years before the application opening date. The Ph.D must be completed by the time employment starts;

  2. Meet the qualification requirements described in the Research Opportunity. Applicants must address the USGS scientific needs described in the Research Opportunity description. The proposal must demonstrate that the applicant is equipped with the knowledge, skills, and abilities to successfully perform the duties for the specific Research Opportunity. If they do not, they may not be considered.

Please read if you are not a United States citizen:  Under Executive Order 11935, only United States citizens and nationals (residents of American Samoa and Swains Island) may compete for civil service jobs. A Federal agency is permitted to hire non-citizens only in very limited circumstances where there are no qualified citizens available for the position, AND the non-citizen meets the appropriation act and immigration laws (refer to the Employment of non-citizens webpage). If a non-citizen does not meet the appropriation act and immigration laws, then they cannot be considered for a Mendenhall Opportunity. Please contact the person under Agency Contact Information for questions about eligibility and further assistance.

Foreign Education. Education completed in foreign colleges or universities may be used to meet the requirements if acceptable documentation that the foreign education is comparable to that received in an accredited educational institution in the United States is provided. It is the applicant's responsibility to provide such evidence. For additional information on acceptable documentation visit: How Foreign Education is Evaluated for Federal Jobs.

Special Requirements

A background investigation will be required. Continued employment will be subject to the applicant's successful completion of a background security investigation and favorable adjudication. Failure to successfully meet these requirements will be grounds for termination.

How to Apply