November 30, 2012

The Coastal Management Fellowship was established in 1996 to provide on-the-job education and training opportunities in coastal resource management and policy for postgraduate students and to provide project assistance to state coastal zone management programs. The program matches postgraduate students with state coastal zone programs to work on projects proposed by the state and selected by the fellowship sponsor, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Coast Services Center. This two-year opportunity offers a competitive salary, medical benefits, and travel and relocation expense reimbursement. 

 WHAT is it? 

• A fellowship established to provide on-the-job education and training opportunities in coastal resource management and policy for postgraduate students. 

• A two-year opportunity that offers a competitive salary, medical benefits, and relocation and travel expense reimbursement. 

• A program that matches postgraduate students with state coastal resource agencies to work on coastal projects proposed by the state and selected by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) Coastal Services Center. 

 WHO is eligible? 

• Any student completing a master’s, doctoral, or professional degree in natural resource management or environmental-related studies from an accredited U.S. university between January 1, 2012, and July 31, 2013. 

• Students from a broad range of environmental programs are encouraged to apply. 

• Application packages are due to your local Sea Grant director by January 25, 2013. 

WHERE can you get information? 

• Contact the Center’s fellowship coordinator at csc.fellowships@noaa.gov 

• Visit the fellowship website at www.csc.noaa.gov/cms/fellows.html 

• Contact your local Sea Grant director at www.seagrant.noaa.gov/other/programsdirectors.html

Frequently Asked Questions 

Q: What master’s, doctoral, or professional degree program does someone need to complete to be eligible for the fellowship? 

A: For the 2013 fellowship, applicants must complete a master’s, doctoral, or professional degree by July 31, 2013, to be eligible. A broad range of degrees are applicable to the fellowship because the state projects are new and different each year. Previous fellows have had degrees in environmental studies, natural resource management, marine affairs, marine science, geology, public affairs, and regional land management. The most important prerequisite is an interest in state-level coastal issues. 

Q: What criteria do the Sea Grant directors use when writing their letters of endorsement? 

A: The Sea Grant directors evaluate applicants based on a face-to-face or phone interview. They look for applicants who have a strong professional interest in coastal management, especially at the state and local level; have experience, through internships, extracurricular activities, or jobs, in coastal activities; and have a proven ability in interpersonal, oral, and written communication. 

Q: What is the length of a fellowship project? 

A: Fellowship projects are two years long. For instance, the 2013 fellowship will start in August 2013 and end in August 2015. Newly selected fellows are given the opportunity to visit their host states prior to the start of the fellowship to meet the staff at their host state and to look for housing. 

Q: Can a state coastal zone program nominate someone for a fellowship position? 

A: State coastal zone programs cannot nominate anyone to be a fellow on their state project. Host states and fellows are selected independently of one another and then matched up through a mutual interview process. Contact between applicants and host states is not allowed. Applicants are encouraged to read about the host state projects on the website or to contact current fellows and ask them questions about their position or experience. 

Q: Does the place where applicants live or go to school determine what project they are eligible for? 

A: Not at all. Applicants are eligible for any of the state projects regardless of where they live or have studied. 

Q: What is the salary for the Coastal Management Fellowship? 

A: The current salary is $34,000 per year. In the second year of the fellowship, a locality pay 

factor may be added to the salary, depending on the location of the fellowship. 

Q: How do fellows get paid? 

A: All of the benefits, including salary, are administered by Tridec Technologies through a contract with the NOAA Coastal Services Center. 

Q: What other benefits, in addition to salary, are included as part of 

the fellowship? 

A: Health insurance, worker’s compensation, relocation reimbursement, and travel reimbursement. 

Q: How much relocation reimbursement do fellows receive? 

A: Fellows will be reimbursed up to $1,000 to move to their fellowship location and up to $1,000 to move at the end of the two-year fellowship. If relocation is not required or the fellowship is not completed, relocation reimbursement will not be provided. 

Q: How much travel reimbursement do fellows receive? 

A: Fellows will be reimbursed up to $1,000 per year for professional development travel. A separate pot of money will be set aside for fellows to travel to specific meetings and conferences required by the fellowship program. Any travel related to their state project will be reimbursed by the host state. 

Q: Do fellows have contact with one another during the fellowship? 

A: The fellows see each other at three events throughout their fellowships. One is the fellows’ meeting, which takes place in the summer of each odd year, and the other is a winter conference, which changes depending on the year. In even years, the fellows attend the Social Coast Forum, and in odd years they attend the Coastal GeoTools Conference. 

Q: Where have previous fellows gone on to work? 

A: Forty-five percent of fellows accepted positions with state government as their first post-fellowship job. Others accepted positions with the private sector (9 percent), the federal government (25 percent), nongovernmental organizations (7 percent), local governments (2 percent) and graduate schools (5 percent). 

For more information about the Coastal Management Fellowship, please visit the website at 

www.csc.noaa.gov/cms/fellows.html.

Fellow Eligibility and Selection 

Eligibility 

Any student completing a master’s, doctoral, or professional degree program in natural resource management or environment-related studies at an accredited U.S. university between January 1, 2012, and July 31, 2013, is eligible to apply for the Coastal Management Fellowship. Students from a broad range of environmental programs are encouraged to apply. Students from non-U.S. institutions are not eligible. All applications must include the following items: 

1. Resume or curriculum vitae (not to exceed two pages using 12 pt. font). 

2. Statement of the applicant’s goals with emphasis on what the applicant expects from and can contribute to the fellowship experience (500 words or less). 

3. Two letters of recommendation, including one from the applicant’s principal professor. If no principal professor exists, the faculty member who is most familiar with the applicant’s academic work may be substituted. 

4. Unofficial copies of all undergraduate and graduate student transcripts. 

How to Apply 

Application packages must be submitted to the Sea Grant program office in the state where you earned your degree by January 25, 2013. Each Sea Grant program office may select and forward up to three applications to the NOAA Coastal Services Center for review. Applicants from states not served by a Sea Grant program office should contact the Center’s fellowship coordinator for more information on submitting an application (contact information is below). 

Selection Criteria 

Finalists are selected based on the following criteria: 

1. Academic performance and diversity of educational background, including extracurricular activities, awards, and honors. 

2. Endorsement of the applicant’s Sea Grant director. 

3. Support from two letters of recommendation, including one from the applicant’s principal professor. 

4. Content of the applicant’s goal statement. 

All qualified applicants will be considered regardless of age, race, sex, creed, marital status, national origin, lawful political affiliation, religious preference, or nondisqualifying physical handicap. 

Selection of Finalists 

From the nominations submitted by Sea Grant directors, 12 finalists will be selected by a selection panel. Final decisions will be made by March 22, 2013, and all applicants will be notified of the decision by the end of the following week. 

Placement of Fellows 

A workshop to match states with fellows will take place in Charleston, South Carolina, in late April/early May 2013. Before the workshop begins, each of the 12 finalists will receive a packet of information detailing the coastal management projects, each of the host agencies, and the background of the area of assignment. No contact between prospective hosts and finalists should be made prior to the placement workshop. 

The finalists will be brought to the workshop at the expense of the NOAA Coastal Services Center for final interviews and placement. Each of the selected host states will send the fellow mentor to the placement workshop. The workshop will consist of a fellowship orientation program, host state project proposal presentations, finalist presentations, finalist and host state interviews, and fellow matching. Of the 12 finalists selected in 2013, 6 will be placed with a host state. 

For Further Information 

For further information, please visit the fellowship website at 

www.csc.noaa.gov/cms/fellows.html or contact: 

Coastal Management Fellowship Program 

NOAA Coastal Services Center 

2234 South Hobson Avenue 

Charleston, SC 29405-2413 

E-mail: csc.fellowships@noaa.gov