National Marine Fisheries Service - Sea Grant Joint Fellowships

The NOAA Fisheries/Sea Grant Fellowship Program is now accepting applications for the 2021 National Marine Fisheries (NMFS) Fellowship: Federal Funding Opportunity Announcement: NOAA-OAR-SG-2021-2006728

Program goals

  • To provide an educational and employment opportunity for current and recent PhD students;
  • To encourage qualified applicants to pursue careers in either population and ecosystem dynamics or marine resource economics;
  • To increase available expertise related to these fields;
  • To foster closer relationships between academic scientists and NOAA Fisheries; and
  • To provide real-world experience to graduate students and accelerate their career development.

Two different focus areas are available:

Population and Ecosystem Dynamics (PED)
The 2021 NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowship Program expects to award at least four new Ph.D. Fellowships to students who are interested in careers related to population and ecosystem dynamics of living marine resources and/or marine ecosystem dynamics. The student's research should focus on modeling and managing systems of living marine resources with an emphasis on quantitative methods for assessing marine ecosystems. 

Marine Resource Economics (MRE)
The 2021 NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowship Program expects to award one new Ph.D. Fellowship to students who are interested in careers related to marine resource economics. The student's research should focus on quantitative methods for assessing the economics of the conservation and management of living marine resources. 


The NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowships are available to United States citizens who are graduate students enrolled in PhD degree programs in academic institutions in the United States and its territories.

The National Sea Grant College program values diversity, equity, and inclusion in both our organization and the communities we serve. Through the NMFS-SG Fellowship we strive to provide an educational and employment opportunity for current and recent graduate students interested in ocean, coastal and Great Lakes resources and the national policy decisions affecting those resources, regardless of race, color, religion, place of origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, socio-economic status, disability or veteran status.

Length of Fellowship

Ph.D. candidates can receive up to three years of funding.

Award and expenses

The fellowship award, contingent upon the availability of Federal funds, will be in the form of a grant or cooperative agreement of up to $63,000 per year ($53,000 federal dollars and $10,600 in matching dollars). The award provided to each Fellow is to cover expenses related to project research, tuition, journal publication fees, academic- and fellowship-related travel, conference fees, online training, and workshops. 


Student applications are due to Lake Champlain Sea Grant by 5:00 pm local time on January 26, 2021. Please submit to Julianna White (Julianna.M.White [at] (subject: NMFS%20Fellowship) ). (Sea Grant Programs must transmit the application via by 11:59 pm, Eastern Time February 17, 2021.)

The anticipated start date is August 1, 2021, with projects to be completed by July 31, 2024.

Essential links

NOAA Fisheries Mentor

To help achieve the goals of the fellowship, each Fellow will be required to work closely with an expert (mentor) from NOAA Fisheries who will serve on the Fellow’s committee. The mentor may also provide access to research data sources and to working/laboratory space in a NOAA Fisheries research facility and/or research vessel, if appropriate. Staff lists and recent publications for each of the NOAA Fisheries Science Centers are listed on each Center's website, linked below. Applicants in the Great Lakes region or in an area without a NOAA Fisheries Science Center may contact a potential mentor whose research aligns with their own.  Alaska Fisheries Science Center (staffpublications); Northwest Fisheries Science Center (staffpublications); Southwest Fisheries Science Center (staffpublications); Northeast Fisheries Science Center (staffpublications), Southeast Fisheries Science Center (staffpublications); Pacific Islands Fisheries Science Center (publications)

Application process

Students should submit applications to a Sea Grant Program and not submit information directly into Application materials are described in the award. A summary follows:

A. Project narrative, including:

  1. Title page (not to exceed 1 page) providing student name and contact information, project proposal title and brief abstract, and project focus area (PED or MRE).
  2. Project Proposal describing the proposed dissertation or general intended area of study and written by the prospective Fellow. 5 page limit, not counting references and figures.
  3. Curriculum vitae (CV) of the student, the faculty advisor, and the NMFS mentor (see below). Individual CVs must not exceed 2 pages.
  4. Clear, scanned copies of all undergraduate and graduate student transcripts.
  5. Summary of Academic Training in quantitative methods, not to exceed 1 page.
  6. Education and Career Goal Statement from the student, not to exceed two pages.
  7. A minimum of two signed letters of recommendation, including one from the student's faculty advisor and one from the student's prospective NMFS mentor (see below).
  8. Proof of acceptance (or provisional acceptance), and enrollment in a graduate program in population dynamics, ecosystem dynamics, or related fields of study. For students who have not yet enrolled in the Ph.D. program, the program’s acceptance letter is adequate. For students who are already enrolled, a letter from the faculty advisor or university registrar’s office is acceptable.
  9. Abbreviated Environmental Compliance Questionnaire found on the Sea Grant website.
  10. Data Management Plan not to exceed 2 pages.

B. Budget narrative

  1. Sea Grant 90-4 Form found on the Sea Grant website
  2. Budget justification for each year of the project. Attach as a PDF to the 90-4 Form. 

C. Additional forms found on the Sea Grant website or


For more information about this fellowship, please contact Julianna White (julianna.m.white [at] at Lake Champlain Sea Grant.