Opportunities for Students and Early Career Researchers

The Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) community is an open space for data professionals at all career stages. Our Community Fellows and Raskin Scholars are important participants in the community. For those pursuing or have recently completed graduate studies, ESIP offers several forms of support:


  • ESIP hosts two meetings each year with a reduced registration rate for students
  • At the July ESIP Meeting, we hold a mini-grant competition, FUNding Friday, and award two graduate student teams $3,000 each to support small projects inspired by ESIP collaboration or participation
  • Each fall we accept a new class of ESIP Community Fellows
  • In the spring, ESIP awards the Raskin Scholarship to a graduate or post-graduate student in the Earth or computer sciences who has an interest in community evolution of Earth science data systems.
Community Fellows Program

ESIP Community Fellow Information:

Title: ESIP Community Fellows Program
Stipend: $2,000/year + Participation in two ESIP Meetings (required)
Location: Virtual, as well as two other meetings (Virtual – January 22-26, 2024 and in Asheville, NC – July 23-26, 2024)
Contact: Megan Carter (megancarter@esipfed.org)
Deadline: October 6, 2023
Application Link: ESIP Community Fellow Application

# of awards: eight positions are available


ESIP Community Fellows are graduate students interested in bridging the gap between informatics and Earth science. This fellowship provides early career researchers a chance to work closely with professionals in an interdisciplinary, cross-sector group by working with one of the ESIP Collaboration Areas. Community Fellows become engaged in ESIP collaboration areas as rapporteurs, documenting group activities on monthly telecons and at ESIP’s two meetings. As fellows become more familiar with collaboration-area activities, they may choose to integrate their own research, which can result in publication and additional funding opportunities.


  • Networking with professionals in your research field
  • Share research to a broader audience
  • Learn leading practices in collaboration
  • Exposure to potential job tracks in government, industry, and academia


  • Support one of ESIP's 30+ Collaboration Areas that align with your research interests
    • Document and send reminders for the group's monthly gathering (about one hour/month)
    • Assist the Collaboration Area leaders through collaborative technologies including Twitter, Zoom, ESIP Wiki, Slack, and more
  • Assist with set-up and monitoring during the January and July ESIP Meetings (about six days each)
  • Write a blog post on how your research relates to ESIP initiatives
  • Share your research with the community at the July ESIP Meeting's Research Showcase


  • Research in Earth or environmental sciences, computer science or Earth science education
  • Strong written and oral communication skills
  • Social media awareness/usage is desired


  • Be enrolled in a graduate program (MS or PhD) or in a postdoctoral research position less than two years beyond your PhD
  • Attend the full duration of both January and July Meetings
  • Join monthly Collaboration Area calls; attendance only excused if the chair knows at least 24 hours before the call and only one call will be excused
  • Participate in occasional networking and training events
  • U.S. Citizen or authorized to work in the U.S.


ESIP Community Fellows will serve a year-long term starting December 2023 to December 2024. Fellows will receive a stipend of $2,000 for participation, paid in two installments (one at the July ESIP Meeting and one at the conclusion of the year only if fellow attended both meetings). In addition, ESIP will cover required travel expenses. Participation following the July ESIP Meeting is contingent on satisfactory performance.

There will be an option to renew for a second year at the end of the first year.

Application Process

If you are interested in being considered as an ESIP Community Fellow, please complete this application form. The process will prompt you to upload an application packet:

  • Upload as a single PDF file
  • Include a cover letter with:
    • your graduate program
    • which Collaboration Areas (cluster or committee) you would like to work with
    • how your research interests align with your top Collaboration Areas
  • Attach graduate transcript
  • Attach one letter of recommendation

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis; those submitted prior to October 6, 2023 will receive priority. Phone interviews will be conducted in mid-October.

If you have additional questions, contact Megan Carter, ESIP Community Director, at megancarter@esipfed.org.



August 21: Call for Applicants Released
October 6: Deadline for receipt of applications (11:59 p.m. ET)
Mid-October: Interview applicants
October 31: Notify recipients of Fellowship
November: New Fellow Orientation
December 1: ESIP Fellowship begins

January: January ESIP Meeting
January – July: Participate in Collaboration Areas
July 2024: July ESIP Meeting
August – December: Participate in Collaboration Areas
November 30: ESIP Community Fellowship ends

Current Fellows

Learn about our current ESIP Community Fellows and read their posts on ESIP's blog, Merge: esipfed.org/merge

What our Fellows have to say about ESIP

“Being an ESIP fellow gives you access to a network of smart, talented, and dedicated people – some of whom will become your mentors, and many more will become your friends. You will quickly find that the dedication, care and concern that this organization shows for a sustainable Earth system is the same dedication, care and concern that they show for one another. And that makes this a fellowship that is not just rewarding professionally, but also personally.”

Nic Weber

“As a current graduate student, it has been a challenge figuring out how to blend my interest in working with large complex data sets into the geosciences. I started by working with data collected from drones and remote sensing data sets from Earth observing satellites, only to discover that I could perform many analyses faster and more efficiently if I used my programming background to automate these tasks. From there it's been an awkward balance of keeping one foot in computer science and the other in the geosciences, where most academic programs do not support or encourage this career path. Fortunately, my student fellowship through ESIP has bridged this gap by giving me the opportunity to meet and collaborate with scientists who have successfully navigated this complicated terrain and developed lasting careers while maintaining this balance between data science and the Earth sciences. The mentorship and friendship that I found at ESIP has been a wonderful experience and excellent encouragement to continue forward on my somewhat unorthodox academic path.”

Sean Barberie

“Being an ESIP fellow is super awesome! One of my favorite things in ESIP was meeting the other fellows at the summer meeting. I knew it would be cool when I met Sean [another Fellow] and he had a mohawk! [W]e had tons to talk about ranging from the gender norms of doing laundry to over-enthusiasm for MongoDB. I also really liked that even though all the fellows had just met one another at the conference, we were all instantly friends, like we had known one another for years but only crossed paths occasionally… I'd really suggest leading a talk at the summer or winter meeting, maybe even two talks. Having to prepare a workshop is hard work, but I've found that it gave me a chance to take a deep dive into something I'm really passionate about, and allowed me to develop a niche that is good for making connections with other people.”

Fox Peterson

“The ESIP Student Fellowship has been an incredible experience. Being able to work with the ESIP Data Stewardship Committee and the ESIP community as a whole has allowed me to grow my science and data management skills and to make contribution to diverse data issues in a variety of settings. I really appreciate all the encouragement and collaborative opportunities that the fellowship has provided for us.”

Sophie Hou