GESTAR II UMBC Graduate Fellowship 2024-2025



Call for Proposals

Due Date: 5 PM EDT,  March 15, 2024

GESTAR II is seeking proposals from graduate students at UMBC who plan to collaborate with GESTAR II Faculty.


UMBC seeks to  strengthen its status as one of the best public research universities  of its size, and the Goddard Earth Sciences Technology and Research II (GESTAR II) contributes to this vision by engaging faculty and students in research critical for the understanding of the Earth System.  To this end, GESTAR II welcomes candidate applications for GESTAR II Graduate Student Fellowships from relevant UMBC departments offering graduate degrees. One fellowship for the 2024-2025 Academic Year will be awarded to a qualified, full-time, degree-seeking graduate student in any of the Earth, biological, physical or computer sciences, mathematics or engineering, to work on a research project with a GESTAR II faculty member ( or NASA Goddard Space Flight Center scientist.  The applicants must be enrolled full-time students and maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher.


The fellowship is valued at a maximum of $45,000 for one year, which includes: in-state tuition for a maximum of ten (10) credits per semester (all other fees are the responsibility of the student), UMBC health insurance benefits and an annual stipend of $29,149 (MS Student)/$31,512 (PhD Candidate).  In addition, GESTAR II will fund limited travel to one professional conference pertinent to the student’s field of study and cover up to $2000 for publication fees.

The GESTAR II fellowship applicant must send  to the GESTAR II Special Programs Administrator
(, with Subject Line: GESTAR II UMBC Fellowship):

  1. A one page statement of interest from the student
  2. A research proposal submitted by the student  (up to 6 pages including figures, single-spaced, 12-point font) that supports a designated GESTAR II Project should typically include:
    1. Background/introduction
    2. Objectives
    3. Data/methodology
    4. Research activities/plan
    5. Timeline of the research
    6. List of references (NOT included in the 6 page limit )
  3. A cover letter by the Graduate Program Director or Department Chair about the basic information and academic performance of the student (e.g., how many years into the Ph.D. study, cumulative GPA, whether the student has passed their qualifying exam and/or preliminary proposal defense);
  4. A recommendation from the GESTAR-2 or GSFC faculty member who will be mentoring and/or collaborating with the student; The letter should include a paragraph to explain how the  GESTAR-2 or GSFC faculty faculty member plans to engage, mentor and support the graduate student (e.g., bi-weekly group meeting, support student at AMS/AGU conference).
  5. A recommendation letter from the student’s advisor (if not the same as item 4 above).
  6. A list of previous GESTAR II  fellowship award(s) and noteworthy achievements
  7. The student’s transcripts (unofficial are fine) and updated CV/Resume


A GESTAR II committee will review and score the proposals, and select the recipient(s) based on academic performance (10%), strength of recommendation letters and personal statement (30%), and intellectual merit of the research plan (60%). Announcement of the  selection(s) will be made in late April 2024  and fellowship will start in Fall 2024.

The recipient(s) of the GESTAR II fellowship are expected to

  1. attend the GESTAR II seminar series to update research progress,
  2. submit a final report of research achievements, including the list of their publications and conference presentations  after the completion of the fellowship and present the highlights of their research achievements at the GESTAR II all-hand meeting,
  3. acknowledge GESTAR II fellowship in all publications and presentations supported by the fellowship.



Goddard Earth Science Technology Research  (GESTAR) II:

For a complete list of GESTAR II faculty:

GESTAR II  Seminar Series:

NASA Goddard Space Flight Center: