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CASC Partnerships with Universities

Each regional CASC encompasses a consortium that includes institutions such as universities and colleges. Through this model, the CASCs harness the diverse expertise of federal, university, and Tribal scientists and support students and early-career scientists through training and professional development opportunities. 

CASCs are Federal-University Partnerships 

Each CASC is a cooperative agreement between the regional CASC and a regional host university. Host institutions are selected through a competitive process that is re-competed approximately every 5 years. In their proposals, host institutions identify potential consortium organizations, including other universities and research institutions, Tribal organizations and colleges, federal agencies, and non-profits. Once selected, the host and consortium institutions work together to identify and work towards regional science priorities as a CASC. At the conclusion of the 5-year host agreement, each CASC undergoes an external program evaluation. These requirements help ensure appropriate oversight of public resources and support USGS decisions regarding funding for and selection of new host institutions. 

Learn more about the CASC host competition process.


University Partners Produce Cutting-Edge Research 

Researchers at the over 40 CASC-affiliated universities and colleges bring a broad diversity of expertise and experience as they participate in CASC funding calls. These hundreds of scientists drive cutting-edge climate adaptation research in a variety of fields, including ecology, wildlife biology, paleobiology, and social science, culminating in research that has been published in prestigious journals such as Science and Nature

Regional CASCs work collaboratively with offices and institutions at their affiliated universities, which allows the CASC network to benefit from expanded technical expertise, resources, and partner and stakeholder networks. For example, the North Central CASC has a close relationship with the big-data scientists at the University of Colorado Boulder’s Earth Lab, while the Northwest CASC is hosted by the regional climate leader the University of Washington Climate Impacts Group


Consortium Institutions Host STEM Training Opportunities 

Regional CASC consortium institutions host fellowship, training, and professional development opportunities for students and early-career scientists and managers, as well as outreach activities for local communities. These opportunities include: 

Graduate and Postdoctoral Research Fellowship programs, including: 

Undergraduate Research Experiences, such as the Pacific Islands CASC’s Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) program 

Workshops and training programs, such as the South Central CASC’s Early Career Researcher Workshop 

Youth STEM outreach, such as the Alaska CASC’s Inspiring Girls Expeditions hosted by the University of Alaska Fairbanks. 

Learn more about university-hosted CASC early career and training opportunities.  


Interested in partnering? Contact us! 

  << Return to Meet Our Partners Page