Opportunities for Students and Early Career Researchers

Meetings: ESIP has two meetings each year; these feature a reduced registration rate for students to encourage their participation.

At the ESIP Summer 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.

Fellowships and Awards: Every year we accept a new class of ESIP Community Fellows and award 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

Details in Brief:

Title: ESIP Community Fellows Program
Stipend: $2000/year + Participation in two ESIP Meetings (required)
Location: Virtual, as well as 2 other meetings (in January and July 2022)
Contact: Megan Carter (megancarter@esipfed.org)
Deadline: October 8th, 2021
Application Link: ESIP Community Fellow Application

# of awards: ~8


ESIP Community Fellows are graduate students interested in bridging the gap between informatics and Earth Science. This fellowship provides students a chance to work closely with professionals in an interdisciplinary, cross-sector group (ESIP collaboration area) on current Earth Science problems. Community fellows become engaged in ESIP collaboration areas as rapporteurs, documenting group activities on monthly telecons and at ESIP’s semi-annual meetings (Summer/Winter). 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 collaboration best practices
  • Exposure to potential job tracks – government, industry, academic


  • Rapporteur for a single cluster that aligns with research interests
    • Document and send reminders for monthly telecons (~1 hr/month)
    • Support the cluster's use of collaborative technologies including, but not limited to: Twitter, Zoom, MediaWiki, Slack, and more.
  • Assist with set-up and monitoring during the July and January Meetings (~6 days each)
  • Write a blog post on how your research relates to cluster initiatives.
  • Share your research with the community at the Summer Meeting poster session


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


  • Must be in a graduate program (M.S./Ph.D.) or a post-doc less than 2 years beyond your Ph.D.
  • Must be able to attend the full duration of both July and January Meetings
  • Must attend monthly telecons for the cluster; attendance only excused if the chair knows at least 24 hours before the call. Only 1 call will be excused.
  • Must attend periodic networking and training events.
  • U.S. Citizen or authorized to work in the U.S.


Fellows will serve a year-term starting from December 2021 – December 2022. Fellows will receive a stipend of $2,000 for participation, paid in two installments (one at the July Meeting and one at the conclusion of the year ONLY if fellow attended BOTH meetings). In addition, required travel expenses will be borne by ESIP. Participation in the Fellowship after the July 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 for the ESIP Community Fellow position, please complete this application form. You will also be prompted to upload a single application packet (PDF), including a cover letter, in which you describe which graduate program you are attending, which clusters or committees (collaboration areas) you would like to work with, as well as how your research interests align with your choice(s) in collaboration areas. The application packet should also include your graduate transcript and a letter of recommendation.

Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis; those submitted prior to October 8, 2021 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 30th: Call for Applicants Released
October 8: Deadline for receipt of applications (midnight EST)
Mid-October: Interview applicants
October 31st: Notify recipients of Fellowship
November: New Fellow Orientation
December 1: ESIP Fellowship begins
Jan 2022: ESIP Winter Meeting
Jan – July, 2022: Fellows participate in cluster
July 2022: ESIP Summer Meeting
August – December, 2021: Fellows participate in clusters
November 30, 2022: ESIP Community Fellowship ends

ESIP Collaboration Areas

Find Collaboration areas here: https://www.esipfed.org/collaborate

Current Fellows

Learn about our current ESIP Fellows here.

Raskin Scholarship

Details in Brief:

Title: Raskin Scholarship
Award: $5000/year + support to attend the 2022 ESIP July Meeting (Pittsburgh, PA)
Eligibility: Graduate Students
Contact: raskin@esipfed.org
Deadline: March 25th, 2022

# of awards: 1

In March 2012, the ESIP Federation lost long-time member, Rob Raskin. Rob was soft-spoken, easy-going, wise and an Earth science information partner extraordinaire. Rob was a mentor to many aspiring Earth science data professionals. In collaboration with Rob’s family, the ESIP Federation remembers Rob and his dedication to support the next generation of Earth science data and technology leaders through the Robert G. Raskin Scholarship.

The scholarship is awarded annually to an individual in the Earth or computer sciences who has an interest in community evolution of Earth science data systems. The Raskin Scholarship seeks to promote collaboration, research support, and exposure for talented students in the Earth or computer sciences. Special attention will be given to applicants demonstrating an interest in semantics, GIS, cyberinfrastructure and computing in the geosciences. The Scholarship will provide a $5000 award and travel support to the ESIP Federation Summer Meeting where they will have an invited talk covering their field of interest.

Current graduate students are eligible to apply. To be considered for the scholarship, applicants must be in an Earth science, computer science or closely related discipline and have an interest in fields related to current technical, scientific or applied activities of the ESIP Federation.

Application Procedure
Applicants for the scholarship will provide:

  • A statement of interest of why s/he is applying for the Raskin scholarship
  • Three letters of recommendation from current professors or internship supervisor (sent directly to raskin@esipfed.org)
  • Official transcript and CV with publication record

NOTE: Only applications that are complete (including recommendations letters) by the above-mentioned deadline will be considered. Applications will be reviewed and the awardee will be selected by a special ESIP committee and be notified on or around April 30th.

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