Graduate students awarded research fellowships

March 13, 2000

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded 850 three-year Graduate Research Fellowships to outstanding college and university students for the year 2000. The graduate fellowship program is one of NSF's oldest, with roots in NSF's original 1950 charter, offering support for graduate study in all scientific disciplines, according to Susan Duby, director of NSF's graduate education division.

"NSF has nearly 50 years of experience that shows these fellowships make a big difference, not only in the careers of the young scientists who receive the awards, but to the nation," says Duby.

NSF graduate fellows are promising young mathematicians, scientists and engineers who Duby says are expected to pursue lifelong careers marked by significant contributions to research, teaching and industrial applications in science, mathematics and engineering. "Its recipients go on to become our top researchers and educators. They are a major force in maintaining the vitality and excellence of American science, mathematics and engineering," she says.

"Eighteen former fellows have won Nobel Prizes," Duby says. "Historically, the recipients of these fellowships have completed their Ph.D.s at a higher rate than other graduate students, have moved on to top-notch departments, and have won more postdoctoral appointments, research grants, prestigious awards and other honors."

Among the year 2000 awardees, 89 (10.5 percent) are members of traditionally underrepresented groups in the sciences, mathematics, engineering and technology fields. Women won 49.8 percent of the awards overall. Awardees come from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. The awardees received their baccalaureate degrees from 236 colleges and universities, including eight foreign institutions.

The fellowships currently provide a stipend of $16,200 per year for fulltime graduate study. NSF also provides an annual cost-of-education allowance of $10,500 in lieu of all tuition and required fees at U.S. institutions. NSF graduate fellows may attend any appropriate non-profit U.S. or foreign institution of higher education. The three years of support may be used within a five-year window, during which time students may suspend receipt of their fellowship stipend in order to incorporate teaching or work experience into their graduate education.

NSF also designated 946 individuals to receive honorable mention in this annual graduate fellowship competition. Those students plus the 850 awardees are eligible to use supercomputer resources provided by the NSF-sponsored Partnerships for Advanced Computational Infrastructure.

National Science Foundation

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