A summer program for undergraduates

Applications Due: Feb. 20, 2015 for summer 2015 program. (Deadline is past)

Purpose:  To prepare undergraduate students for graduate school and careers in marine science, policy, management and outreach.

This ten-week program places high caliber undergraduate students from around the country with public agencies (federal, state, and local) to provide students with hands-on experience under the mentorship of a career professional. In addition to supporting agency programs and initiatives, the goals to offer students professional skills, agency workplace experience and real-life practice in marine resource science, policy, management and outreach.


Ultimately, the Oregon Sea Grant Undergraduate Summer Scholars program aims to increase the number of graduates who are work ready, trained in public agency marine program areas and able to apply marine science, policy, management and outreach skills to the most pressing coastal and ocean issues facing Oregon and the nation.
 
Summer Scholar Duties and Activities: Student Scholars will be placed with an academic, government or non-governmental organization, and will assist host agencies with field work, lab work, analysis, research, policy development and/or outreach and public engagement efforts. They will be assigned to a specific project under a mentor and will be expected to dedicate at least 40 hours a week to the program. The program will provide students with some training on subjects such as ecosystem-based management, professional and scientific communication, field- and lab-based scientific methods, natural resource policy development, public outreach and roles of federal, state and local governments in natural resource management. The program will include field trips within Oregon and an opportunity for students to present their summer work. Scholars will be expected to participate in all program activities and complete a final project report during the last week of their experience.

Eligibility: Any undergraduate student who will have completed the equivalent of two years of full time study by June 15, and who is currently enrolled in any U.S. college or university, or who will have graduated during the 2014-2015 academic year, may apply. Students from diverse backgrounds are encouraged to apply.

Important Dates:

February 20 – Applications Due by 5:00 p.m. Pacific Standard Time
March 30 - April 3 – Interviews with top candidates
April 10 – Notification of Awards and Placement
June 15 – Summer Scholars Program Begins
August 21 – Summer Scholars Program Ends

How to Apply:  All application materials (see Required Application Components below) should be sent to Oregon Sea Grant at the email or mailing address below. Either electronic or hard copies will be accepted, although electronic copies are preferred. All components must arrive at the address below by 5 pm Pacific Standard time on the application deadline date. Incomplete or late applications will not be considered. Please be sure to consider processing and mailing time for all materials, and provide recommendation writers with adequate time to complete and submit their letters.
 
Mail:

Oregon Sea Grant Scholars
Oregon State University
1600 SW Western Boulevard
Corvallis, Oregon 97333
Email: seagrant.admin@oregonstate.edu; Subject: Oregon Sea Grant Scholars
 
Required Application Components:

A complete application will include the following 4 components. The personal statement and résumé must be sent together in one email or letter. If emailing your application, application materials should be attached in PDF (preferred) or MS Word file format.

1. A one or two page résumé describing your work and/or volunteer experience. Please use 12 point Times New Roman font and 1 inch margins. The résumé must include your name, contact information (including phone and email address), GPA, and educational history. The résumé should also detail your work and volunteer history, particularly as it relates to the Summer Scholar opportunity.

2. A personal statement in essay style not to exceed 1,500 words. Use 12 point Times New Roman font, 1 inch margins, and 1.5 line spacing. The statement should have:

a. one or two paragraphs that tells us about your personal/professional/academic background including your related experience, your major and why you chose it, and why you are interested in marine science, policy, management, and outreach
b. one or two paragraphs about your academic and professional goals, including your plans for the next academic year and your graduation date or anticipated graduation date; and
c. one paragraph on how you think this scholarship would help you reach these goals – you may choose to indicate which projects you are interested in and why.

3. Two letters of recommendation. One letter should be from someone who supervised you in a work or volunteer position and can describe your suitability for the scholarship program. The second letter should be from a college professor and focus on academic achievement. Hard copies of letters should be sealed in an envelope, signed across the seal, and sent to the above mailing address. If you are mailing your application materials, you may include the sealed letters with your application. Electronic versions must originate directly from the recommender's email address and be sent to seagrant.admin@oregonstate.edu. Letters of recommendation must be received by by 5:00 p.m. Pacific Standard Time on the deadline date.

4. Official transcripts showing all college level education. Hard copies of official transcripts must be in their original sealed envelopes. Transcripts may be mailed directly from the institution, or, if you are mailing your application materials, you may include the sealed transcripts with your application. Electronic versions must be emailed directly from the institution or their transcript service to seagrant.admin@oregonstate.edu. All transcripts must be received by 5:00 p.m. Pacific Standard Time on the deadline date.

Note: Please include only the required components in your application packet (i.e. do not include a cover letter, additional recommendations, or photos). 

Selection Process:  Applications will be reviewed by the Program Leader and a small selection committee. Top candidates will be interviewed by phone and/or in person or by video conference by the selection committee. Up to seven students will be selected based on the following criteria: Academic achievement, especially in natural and social sciences

  • Academic achievment, especially in natural and social sciences
  • Writing and ability to articulate academic and professional goals
  • Letters of recommendation
  • Verbal communication skills as demonstrated during interview
  • Alignment of applicant interests, goals, and skills with host agencies and mentors

Award:  Selected students will be awarded a $4,000 stipend to offset living expenses during the ten-week fellowship. The stipend will be paid in two installments, one upon arrival and the final at the conclusion of the fellowship. Student housing will be provided to those students who need it. A small number of need-based assistance grants may be available to cover travel expenses; these will require a supplemental application once students are selected.

What to Expect:  Student Scholars will be placed with an Oregon academic, government, or non-government organization, likely on the coast. Each will be assigned to a specific project under a mentor and will be expected to dedicate at least 40 hours a week to the program. The program will provide students with training on subjects relevant to the project, such as ecosystem-based management, professional and scientific communication, field-based scientific methods, natural resource policy development, public outreach, and roles of federal, state and local governments in natural resource management. The program will include field trips within Oregon and an opportunity for students to present their summer work. Scholars will be expected to participate in all program activities and complete a final project report during the last week of their experience.

Host Descriptions

Hosts and assignments change from year to year. The following document details 2015 host agencies and assignments and provide an example of the kinds of projects Summer Scholars might be assigned to:

Download Download summer-scholars-hosts-2015.docx

Contacts:   We strongly discourage potential applicants from contacting host agencies. If you have questions please feel free to contact us.
 
For questions about the application:
Research and Fellowships Leader: Sarah Kolesar, 541-737-8695. Email
 
For questions about what it's like to be a scholar:
Summer Scholars Program Coordinator and 2013 Summer Scholar Sarah Heidmann. Email

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