Knauss Marine Policy Fellow

2025 Sea Grant John A. Knauss Marine Policy Fellowship—NOW OPEN

Sea Grant Knauss Fellowships are one-year, paid fellowships for graduate students interested in ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources and policies. Knauss fellows are matched with “hosts” in executive or legislative offices in Washington, DC. Executive placements may be with NOAA, U.S. Navy, the Department of Transportation, Water Power Technologies in the Department of Energy, Fish and Wildlife Service, the Environmental Protection Agency, or others. Legislative placements may be with the U.S. senators or representatives of committees within Congress, such as the House Committee on Natural Resources or the U.S. Senate Committee on Science, Commerce and Transportation.

More information

Application timeline

  • (OPTIONAL) January 22, 2024: Submit your CV, personal statement, 2022 plans statement, and transcripts to Lake Champlain Sea Grant for informal feedback. 
  • February 15, 2024, 5pm EST: Submit full application package, described below, to Lake Champlain Sea Grant. Incomplete applications will not be accepted, per national rules. Preparation can take up to a month, so please plan ahead. Send submission to Anna.Marchessault [at]
  • February 27-March 10, 2024: Lake Champlain Sea Grant conducts interviews.
  • March 15, 2024: Lake Champlain Sea Grant notifies applicants whether their application will be submitted to the national program.
  • March 28, 2024: Lake Champlain Sea Grant submits up to six applications to the national program.
  • Summer 2024: National Sea Grant announces selected fellows.
  • October 2024, January 2025: Placement week
  • February 1, 2025: Fellowship begins

About the Fellowship

Eligibility: Any student, regardless of citizenship, is eligible to submit to this opportunity if:

  1. The student is enrolled towards a degree in a graduate program at any point between the onset of the 2023 Fall Term (quarter, trimester, semester, etc.) and February 15, 2024;
  2. The graduate degree will be awarded through an accredited institution of higher education in the United States or U.S. Territories, and;
  3. The student has an interest in ocean, coastal, and Great Lakes resources and in the national policy decisions affecting those resources.

The National Sea Grant College Program champions diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) by working to create a marine science workforce that reflects the communities we serve. We are recruiting, retaining, and preparing a diverse workforce, and proactively engaging and serving the diverse populations of coastal communities. Sea Grant is committed to building inclusive research, extension, communication, and education programs that serve people with unique backgrounds, circumstances, needs, perspectives, and ways of thinking. We encourage student applicants of all ages, races, ethnicities, national origins, gender identities, sexual orientations, disabilities, cultures, religions, citizenship types, marital statuses, education levels, job classifications, veteran status types, income, and socioeconomic status types to apply for this opportunity.

Terms of appointment and stipend: The fellowship will be for a period of one year starting February 1, 2025 through January 31, 2026 in which the fellow will work in or near Washington, DC.

Base funding for each award is $93,900. This includes $71,400 to cover the fellow’s salary/stipend and personal expenses for the twelve months of the fellowship (including health care), $17,500 for travel, and $5,000 can be used to cover allowable expenses. Allowable expenses could include, but are not limited to, relocation prior to and following the fellowship, academic tuition, journal publication fees, academic- and fellowship-related travel, conference fees, online trainings, and workshops.

The fellow must submit an interim performance report and send a final performance report to the home Sea Grant program by the last day of the fellowship.

Application instructions

Applications must include:

  1. Curriculum vitae (not to exceed two pages).
  2. Personal education and career development response (1500 words or less)
  3. Relevant coursework and future year plans (not to exceed one page)
  4. Two letters of recommendation, one from a faculty member with knowledge of the applicant’s academic performance (each letter not to exceed two pages)
  5. Clear digital or scanned copies of all undergraduate and graduate student transcripts.
  6. For applicants in a state or territory not served by an eligible Sea Grant program, but applying through an eligible Sea Grant program, a written statement from the Sea Grant Knauss Fellowship Program Manager referring the applicant to the most appropriate eligible Sea Grant program must be included as part of that applicant's application package to the Sea Grant program.

Each component of the application must be submitted electronically in one or multiple PDF files to Anna Marchessault, Communications and Program Associate, Lake Champlain Sea Grant (Anna.Marchessault [at] by 5:00 p.m. EST on February 15, 2024. Please use the subject line "Knauss Fellowship." Confirmation of application receipt will be sent by email. If you do not receive a confirmation within several days, please contact Anna (802-777-9130).

Letters of recommendation may be included in the submission or sent separately by 5:00 p.m. EST on February 15, 2024 via email to Anna.Marchessault [at] or mail to: Anna Marchessault, Lake Champlain Sea Grant, Rubenstein School, Aiken Center, 81 Carrigan Drive, Burlington, Vermont 05405.

If an application is selected to continue to the national competition, the letter of endorsement from the sponsoring Sea Grant program director, required federal application documents, and required Sea Grant budget forms will also be considered. Lake Champlain Sea Grant will work with the applicant to complete these at the end of March.

Evaluation criteria

  • Relevant experience related to diversity of education; extra-curricular activities; and interpersonal, written, and oral communication skills and other applicable competencies (75 points)          
  • Relevant coursework and future year plans (10 points)
  • Recommendations and/or endorsements of the student (15 points)
  • Overall application cohesion (10 points)

At the national review, the evaluation criteria are identical to those used at the state level, except that in criteria (1), the letter of endorsement from the sponsoring Sea Grant program director will also be considered.


For more information about this fellowship, please contact Anna Marchessault (Anna.Marchessault [at] at Lake Champlain Sea Grant.