The GRFP is a prestigious, nationally competitive fellowship offered by the National Science Foundation. It provides three years of financial support for beginning graduate study leading to a research-based degree in the STEM disciplines.
The fellowship includes a $32,000-per-year stipend for three years. Additionally, each Fellow receives a tuition waiver via a cost-of-education allowance that is awarded to the graduate institution. After one year of graduate study, Fellows become eligible to apply for international research funding support through Graduate Research Opportunities Worldwide (GROW).
*Always refer to the current NSF-GRFP Solicitation for official eligibility information.
Note: The new solicitation clearly explains that all post-baccalaureate study counts toward eligibility. If you are enrolled in a joint BS/MS program, please refer to the GRFP solicitation for your eligibility windows.
The GRFP competition opens in August with deadlines starting in late October. Awards are announced the following spring. Fellows must commence graduate study in the summer or fall after accepting the award. About 2,000 fellowships will be offered pending availability of funds.
Whereas the National Science Foundation awards grants to investigators to fund their research, the Graduate Research Fellowship Program funds students who are training to become well-rounded researchers. It's a fine distinction, but an important one.
An important reason to apply is that a significant part of the application is about assessing your confidence in yourself. Even if you don't receive the fellowship, applying can boost your confidence that you have the tools and ability to plan and propose research, which is essential to succeed in graduate school.
'11 Fellow, Plant Sci