• Dan

Engineering a sustainable future.

The Gund Institute for Environment and UVM’s Engineering programs within the College of Engineering and Mathematical Sciences (CEMS) seek outstanding PhD students strongly interested in addressing pressing environmental issues while pursuing a PhD in engineering.

These Gund Barrett PhD Fellowships, supported by The Barrett Foundation, will enable PhD students to collaborate across disciplines on urgent issues at the intersection of engineering and the environment.

An interdisciplinary PhD experience

Students will receive up to four years of funding, including an annual $35,000 stipend, tuition, and UVM’s student health insurance. They can also access additional funds for conferences and research costs.

Primary faculty advisors must be a Gund Fellow or Gund Affiliate from UVM Engineering (biomedical, civil, electrical, environmental or mechanical). Students must pursue a PhD degree in CEMS engineering departments and mentor undergraduate Barrett Scholars.


While these fellowships are open to existing UVM graduate students as well as new applicants from outside UVM, priority for these fellowships will be given to new doctoral applicants from outside UVM.

Applications will be reviewed against five main criteria:

Application Instructions

Please check back in the fall, as these application instructions may change.

1. Contact potential faculty advisors directly to discuss your interests. Identify a Gund Fellow or Gund Affiliate from Engineering (biomedical, civil, electrical, environmental or mechanical) who can serve as your primary advisor.

2. Submit the required application(s):

  • If new to UVM: You must apply via the Graduate College for a PhD degree in engineering in CEMS by the relevant deadline and no later than the Gund application deadline. Indicate in your application statement that you are applying for a Gund-Barrett Fellowship. 
  • All applicants (whether at UVM or applying to UVM): Complete the separate Gund Institute application.
  • Applications must include a statement of interest (this same statement can be used for the CEMS application) with:
    • How your interests and experience align with Gund Institute themes and address a pressing environmental issue(s).
    • Brief summary of your discussions or conversations with potential faculty advisors and the specific PhD degree you want to pursue. 
    • How your background, research, and/or experience would contribute to a diverse and inclusive environment.
    • If you are applying for a Gund Barrett Fellowship and are already a PhD student at UVM, you may also attach an updated C.V. with your statement of interest.
    • Your name at the top of your statement.


  • Gund application deadline to be confirmed (January 2025) 
  • CEMS application: Deadlines vary - click here to find each program's deadline. Please be sure to submit your UVM application before the Gund deadline in January.
  • Gund makes offers: March-April 2025
  • Students accept offers: March-April 2025
  • Start Date: Fall 2025

About the Gund Institute

The Gund Institute for Environment catalyzes environmental research, develops real-world solutions to global issues, and connects UVM with leaders in government, business and beyond. Based at the University of Vermont, the Gund Institute is a newly expanded campus-wide center for interdisciplinary research, where over 250 faculty, global affiliates, post-docs, and graduate students collaborate widely to understand the interactions among ecological, social, and economic systems. The Gund Institute focuses on environmental issues at the interface of five pressing themes: climate solutions, health and well-being, sustainable agriculture, equity and justice, and resilient communities.

Diversity and Inclusion

The Gund Institute for Environment strives to build a diverse and inclusive community of scholars and leaders, because it is essential to our mission and central to our vision for a sustainable world.

We define “diversity” as the full spectrum of cultural and socioeconomic affiliations that characterize individuals within society, and “inclusion” as valuing the contributions of that diversity to our work and community.

A diverse and inclusive institute will enhance the relevance and impact of our work, ensure our solutions represent those most affected by environmental challenges, address environmental injustice, diversify the environmental leadership of the future, and train those leaders to operate in diverse teams and environments. Learn more about diversity and inclusion at the Gund. 

Gund Student and Alumni Stories

Learn about Gund students and grads like Liz Palchak and Dan Fredman, who joined VEIC after studying energy and behavior. Palchak is now UVM's Director of Sustainability.

Key Dates

  • Applications open: October 2024
  • Apply deadline: to be confirmed (January 2025)
  • Start date: Fall 2025


Contact Bailey Rowland