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Diverse Knowledge Systems for Climate Adaptation Fellowship Requirements

Learn about the expectations surrounding fellowship eligibility, funding, travel, and final reporting for the DKS fellowship. Please direct questions about the fellowship program to Dr. Abigail Lynch, NCASC Research Fish Biologist, ajlynch@usgs.gov. 

Eligibility 

The CASC culture is to advance diversity, inclusion, and empowerment for traditionally underrepresented communities. This opportunity is open to graduate students at Climate Adaptation Science Center Consortium Institutions (see map) and minority-serving institutions such as Historically Black Colleges and Universities, Tribal College and Universities, Hispanic-Serving Institutions, and Asian American and Native American Pacific Islander-Serving Institutions. Applicants must be registered students for the entire fellowship year (justified exceptions will be considered in special cases). 

 

Financial Award 

Up to two Fellows will be selected, annually, to receive a financial award of $10,000 each. The financial award is intended to support the additional efforts undertaken by Fellows for their DKS project, not as a graduate stipend, tuition, or other university funding. The award may not be used by the academic institution to substitute a graduate stipend, pay tuition, or used in lieu of other university funding appropriated to the Fellow. This award is to be used at the discretion of the Fellow. Typically, Fellows use their funding for travel and lodging associated with their DKS projects. Fellows may, but are not required to, use their funds for additional research purposes related to their DKS projects. Fellows are individually responsible for all taxes associated with this award. 

 

Mentoring Experience 

Each Fellow will work closely with his/her/their university mentor (typically, the applicant’s graduate program advisor) and a mentor from the CASCs (matched to applicants by the CASCs after the Statement of Interest (SOI) stage; see ).   

 

Fellowship Duration and Location 

The fellowship experience will last one year (start date is flexible within funded year, starting May at the earliest). During this time, the Fellow will be expected to work at a CASC with a CASC mentor for two months (typically summer; specific dates are flexible; virtual options considered as appropriate) but may remain at his/her/their host institution for the rest of the term.   

 

Requirements for Fellows Once Selected 

  1. Virtual Update Meetings throughout the Fellowship Year. The Fellow, the Fellow’s Mentors, and the Review Committee will participate in three virtual meetings spaced throughout the fellowship year. For example, if a fellowship year starts in the spring, one meeting would be held in the spring, as the student is beginning the fellowship and planning for the summer, one in the summer while the student is working at a CASC, and one in the fall as the fellowship is nearing completion. The Fellow will be responsible for scheduling meetings, developing an agenda, and providing a short (1 page maximum) progress report to all attendees for each meeting. 

  1. Formal Presentations at end of Fellowship Year. The Fellow must present a National CASC webinar at the end of the fellowship and is encouraged to present the project results at their home institution and in other formal venues.  

  1. Blog Post. The Fellow will be required to work with the NCASC Communications Team to write a blog post for the NCASC website, which could include a description of the fellowship project, description of the Fellow’s experience as a Fellow, lessons learned, and advice for future fellows. 

  1. Final Report by the Fellow. The Fellow will be required to submit a formal project report within three months of completing the fellowship to USGS and Morgan State University. The final report should include:   

    1. A description of the fellowship project in detail, description of the Fellow’s experience as a Fellow, lessons learned, and advice for future fellows.  

    2. A section written by the University and CASC mentors briefly describing the mentoring experience and provide advice for future mentors.