Graduate Research Fellows

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Graduate Research Fellows

With a goal of enhancing the global competitiveness of Arizona’s graduate programs and developing a pool of talented job candidates in high-tech fields, Science Foundation Arizona funds the Graduate Research Fellows  (GRF) program. The intention is to strengthen the three research universities by providing access to the best and the brightest prospective scientists and engineers, deepening the pool of candidates for jobs: for example, in aerospace and defense industries, electronics and IT, bioscience and biomedicine, environmental protection, construction, and sustainable development.  Since 2007, SFAz has funded 297 GRF fellows in Arizona.

The GRF program recognizes that none of this happens without propelling still younger students along the STEM pathway and into the pipeline.  The program accomplishes that task by requiring all GRF fellows to spend a day a week working in middle and high school classrooms with teachers and students, and participating in summer teaching internships. One important consequence of this linkage is the introduction of STEM education into classrooms as positive, in-context experiences favoring high-tech career choices.

Cohort V Graduate Research Fellows commenced their fellowship in the Fall 2013.

SFAz announces selection of 34 Graduate Research Fellows

Science Foundation Arizona Invests $1.2 Million in building High-Tech Talent for the Workforce Pipeline Through its Graduate Research Fellows Program

In addition to their research, the Fellows mentor teachers/students in K-12 classrooms

PHOENIX (May 16, 2013) – Science Foundation Arizona (SFAz) has invested $1.2 million in its 5th annual Graduate Research Fellow (GRF) program to continue to build research talent to benefit Arizona’s workforce pipeline. This year, 34 recipients have been selected and will conduct research in bio-sciences; information and communications technologies; environmental sustainability; and aerospace and defense at Arizona’s three research universities: Arizona State University, University of Arizona and Northern Arizona University.

The GRF program goal is to provide a pool of talented job candidates for the high-technology and science-related industries imperative to Arizona’s future and to enhance the global competiveness of Arizona’s graduate programs. In addition to the Fellows’ research responsibilities, the program requires recipients to work six to eight hours a week in a K-12 school to mentor teachers and/or students in the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, (STEM). This helps to further strengthen the future generation of workers with the hands-on experience and skills necessary to compete in the 21st century global economy.

Of the 34 selected Fellows, 19 will conduct their research at ASU, 11 at UA and four at NAU. Prior to the 2013 selection, SFAz had funded 263 GRF’s, bringing its grand total to 297.

“It’s critical for Arizona to continue to have an ongoing flow of high-tech talent for our workforce as well as to be conducting research that allows these bright minds to capitalize on ideas for our marketplace,” said Science Foundation Arizona’s President and CEO, William Harris. “In just a few years, we’ve already seen the creation of start-up companies providing real value to the community from research we initially funded. One example is Heliae, an algae technology solutions company that has significant commercial potential and has created 100 jobs. The continuation of our GRF program is imperative for Arizona.”

The newly selected Fellows begin conducting their research at Arizona’s universities in fall 2013. For a complete list of selected fellows and their proposed research topics, please download here.

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