version of the Spring 2013 C-DEBI Graduate Student Fellowship RFP]
The C-DEBI Graduate Fellow Program supports graduate student
research in C-DEBI
community laboratories. A candidate fellow's research
is expected to align with one or more of the C-DEBI objectives.
A principal goal of C-DEBI is to recruit scientists of any
related fields to deep biosphere research and to build a well-connected
future community of deep-biosphere researchers. C-DEBI
encourages women and members of underrepresented groups to
apply. This funding is only available to graduate
students sponsored in US institutions.
C-DEBI provides support for graduate student fellowships
awarded on the basis of scientific excellence and the appropriateness
of the subject matter to Center
objectives. The goal of the graduate student program is
to stimulate the advancement of deep biosphere research through
the training of a new generation of innovative scientists.
Potential fellows should contact and discuss research topics
for fellowships with potential advisors, as successful candidates
will be expected to have well-conceived research plans as
well as willing C-DEBI advisors.
The central research
themes within C-DEBI are:
- Activity in the deep biosphere: function &
rates of global biogeochemical processes
- Extent of life: biomes and the degree of connectivity
(biogeography & dispersal)
- Limits of life: extremes and norms of carbon,
energy, nutrient, temperature, pressure, pH
- Evolution and survival: adaptation,
enrichment, selection, and cell repair
Proposals should clearly state how the research contributes
to one or more of these themes.
Proposed projects should be innovative and aim to answer
current fundamental research questions and/or contribute to
the development of new hypotheses and goals for future studies.
Successful proposals will clearly articulate the relevance
of proposed research for C-DEBI, indicate sources of samples
and/or data (where necessary), and describe the qualifications
of the applicant(s). Entrainment
of new researchers previously not funded by C-DEBI will be
a major consideration in the decision process.
See the Grants
Programs FAQs for additional review details.
Proposals will be considered for pre- and post-expedition
research using samples and data, and/or participation on upcoming
expeditions. Proposed research can also focus on theoretical,
experimental and/or modeling studies of the deep biosphere
in a broader sense, e.g., testing novel techniques for deep
biosphere research, lab-based experiments with deep biosphere
organisms, model development, or metabolic studies of growth
under deep subsurface conditions. Fundamental studies of microbial
metabolism that can be applied to subseafloor conditions will
also be considered.
In addition to the general call which targets all appropriate C-DEBI research, the current proposal call includes a special focused topic for funding projects that involve field, experimental, or theoretical approaches related to an oceanographic expedition to the Dorado Outcrop. This expedition is scheduled for 6-27 November 2013 to explore for and sample from springs discharging cool (5 to 20°C) hydrothermal fluids on 23 m.y. old seafloor on the eastern flank of the East Pacific Rise (PIs Wheat (UAF), Fisher (UCSC), and Hulme (MLML)). The expedition will include multi-beam mapping with a surface ship and the AUV Sentry, and seafloor exploration, sampling, and measurements using the ROV Jason [more on the Dorado project and the NSF proposal]. Opportunities, including limited berths, exist for C-DEBI "add-on" science that can be completed without diverting significantly from primary operations. To avoid potential conflicts please consult with a PI prior to submittal. C-DEBI anticipates that a third to a half of funds will go to support high quality proposals on this topic.
Applicants who wish to use samples or data collected as part
of IODP or other oceanographic expeditions must ensure that
their proposed projects do not conflict with existing expedition-related
projects (e.g., shipboard scientists’ projects). Proponents
and their intended advisors should resolve this issue by contacting
expedition co-chiefs and shipboard scientists before they
submit their proposals. In this respect, it should be noted
that receiving research support from C-DEBI does not guarantee
access to samples or data that are not available to the community
at large. Applicants for C-DEBI support are responsible for
securing access to all samples and data needed to complete
proposed work, and should provide evidence of access to the
samples in the proposal, if appropriate. For the IODP Sample,
Data and Obligations Policy and other sample and data access
information, visit http://www.iodp.org/access-data/.
Graduate student fellowships are available for a maximum
of 2 years, depending on a successful evaluation near the
end of year 1 of the fellowship. Current funding rates are
$32,000 and will be distributed as stipend funds directly
to the advisor’s home institution. The home institution
must be a US institution able to receive NSF funding as a
subaward and agree that no part of the award will be used
The applicant must be a student in good standing who has
been accepted into the graduate program. Each graduate applicant
will identify a primary advisor, who agrees to sponsor them
and manage logistical aspects of their support (office and
lab space, materials and supplies for conducting research).
The primary advisor will be required to commit to meeting
with the graduate student to discuss research progress at
least twice monthly and to provide means of allowing broader
discussion about her or his research – this can be in
the form of departmental seminars, group meetings, etc. The
primary advisor also is required to provide support for the
graduate student to attend the Fall
American Geophysical Union Meeting in San Francisco. Fellows
are expected to attend yearly C-DEBI
meetings. The advisor should include a statement agreeing
to these points in their recommendation letter.
Fellows will submit a progress report on their achievements
(2 pages maximum including any presentations given or papers
published that can be listed separately), a one page summary
of the proposed work for the second year and a letter of progress
from the advisor to an ad-hoc oversight committee whose approval
will be required for the release of the second year of fellowship
> See our graduate
student and postdoctoral mentoring plan.
|Application and Submission
Applications should include a cover page,
a proposal for research to be conducted (maximum 3 pages),
a proposal implementation statement, a curriculum vitae, a
recommendation from the anticipated fellowship advisor and
a second faculty recommendation. The
next deadline for this semiannual call is April 1, 2013.
1. Cover Page (PDF form)
2. Research Proposal - The research project
should clearly be the applicant's own endeavor and should
demonstrate the student’s capability or potential for
carrying out the project. Research goals should be realistic
and attainable within the expected period of the fellowship.
As necessary, the methodology section should also discuss
any relevant pilot studies, projected numbers of samples,
sampling strategies, and both limitations and strengths of
the proposed techniques. Literature citations should be included
throughout the proposal wherever appropriate.
Each research proposal must include a short title, an abstract
(a concise summary of about 100 words), and a description
of the proposed research (statement of the problem, background
and relevance to previous work, discussion of methodology
and procedure to be followed, explanation of new or unusual
techniques, and discussion of expected results, significance,
3. Proposal Implementation Statement - Include
a 1 page statement briefly describing the research facilities
where you plan to carry out laboratory testing, if applicable,
and a timeline and schedule of your proposed research.
4. Curriculum Vitae - Include relevant educational
history (degrees and dates awarded); fellowships, scholarships,
and awards received; academic honors received; society membership(s);
employment experience (including any internships); and any
authored or co-authored journal articles, abstracts, or other
publications related to your proposed research.
5. Faculty Advisor Material - Include a
copy of the faculty advisor's two page curriculum vitae and
a letter of recommendation addressing 1) the degree of originality
and independence the applicant has shown in developing the
proposed fellowship research and 2) how the research is intellectually
and fiscally linked to the advisor's research (funded or pending).
The advisor should also include a statement of commitment
as described in the requirements section above.
6. Second Faculty Recommendation
Please submit your proposal, preferably as a single
PDF document, to C-DEBI at email@example.com to the attention of:
C-DEBI Co-Managing Director
Questions about the graduate student fellowship can be addressed
to the C-DEBI Research Coordinator:
- Linda Duguay (firstname.lastname@example.org),
University of Southern California
You may also contact one of the four theme team leaders or the PIs of the Dorado Expedition:
- Theme 1 (Activity): Beth Orcutt (email@example.com)
- Theme 2 (Extent of Life): Andreas Teske (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Theme 3 (Limits of Life): Tom McCollom (email@example.com)
- Theme 4 (Evolution and Survival): Bill Nelson (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- Dorado Expedition: Geoff Wheat (email@example.com), Andy Fisher (firstname.lastname@example.org), Sam Hulme (email@example.com)
> Read our Grants
Programs FAQs to understand how C-DEBI proposals are reviewed
> What graduate student research projects have been funded?
> See also the similarly IODP-aligned Schlanger
Fellowship for graduate students.
> See also the opportunity for Interridge
Student Fellowships of up to $5000.