Monday, September 12, 2016

National Science Foundation Workshop September 23, 2016, 2-4 p.m. Bldg 87 Room 3200

Greetings RIT Graduate Students!
I would like to share with you a letter from our new Dean about the upcoming NSF grant Workshop.

Attention All Graduate Students,

Are you aware that you may be able to acquire funding through the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program (NSF GRFP)?

In the past, RIT PhD students have had significant success with the NSF GRF program. Several of our PhD students have been awarded NSF GRFs, and others have received honorable mentions. 

The Office of Graduate Education, in collaboration with trained faculty and previous award winners, holds workshops every fall to help assist our students in completing this application. This information is being sent to you to allow you to review the eligibility and application requirements which will help you prepare a working draft. We encourage students who have achieved honorable mentions to prepare for a second application, if eligible.

To be eligible for the NSF GRFP, you must:
-  be a US citizen, US national, or permanent resident
- intend to pursue a research-based Master's or Ph.D. program in a GRFP-supported field
-  be enrolled in an eligible program at an accredited United States graduate institution, with a US campus, by fall 2017
-  be at an early stage in your graduate career
-have completed no more than twelve months of full-time graduate study (or the equivalent) as of August 1, 2016
- Effective as of the 2017 competition (fall 2016 deadlines), graduate students are limited to only one application to the GRFP, submitted either in the first year or in the second year of graduate school. An exception is provided for first-year graduate students who applied in fall 2015 to the 2016 GRFP competition; these individuals may apply as second year graduate students in fall 2016 to the 2017 GRFP competition, if they are otherwise eligible.
- meet all other eligibility requirements as set forth in the current Program Solicitation

The following categories are always ineligible for the GRFP:

-  Those who do not have US citizenship, US national status or permanent resident status by the application deadline.
-  Those who have earned any graduate or professional degree by August 1, 2016, except 1) applicants who have completed a joint baccalaureate-master's (BS/MS) program and have not completed any further graduate study outside the joint program or 2) applicants who have an interruption of at least two consecutive years prior to November 1, 2016 (may have earned a Master's degree) and have completed no additional graduate study by August 1, 2016.
-  Those who were previously awarded a fellowship from the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program and accepted it.
- Those who declined the offer of the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship and who did not notify NSF by the published deadline for accepting the Fellowship.
- Current NSF employees.

The complete set of GRFP eligibility guidelines is published in the on the NSF website at  We strongly encourage all applicants to read the program solicitation carefully before applying. The 2016 solicitation contains the official and only eligibility criteria for the 2016 GRFP competition.

On September 23, 2016 there will be an interactive session held where some of our outstanding faculty and students will be available to review your application drafts and provide you with constructive input. The deadline for submission of the application NSF is October 24-28, 2016. The specific date will depend on your discipline

This interactive session will be held from 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm in the University Services Center (Bldg. 87) room 3200. To register go to:

To learn about the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program go to:  You can also read Erika Mesh’s blog about the process here.  Erika is an RIT Ph.D. student and a recipient of a NSF Graduate Research Fellowship:

I hope you will take advantage of this opportunity and attend the interactive session on September 23rd .

Best Regards,


Twyla J. Cummings, Ph.D.
Dean of Graduate Education
Rochester Institute of Technology
USC 87-3105
55 Lomb Memorial Drive
Rochester, NY 14623-5603
585-475-5567 (office)
585-475-5690 (fax)