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National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program (NSF GRFP)


The Graduate Research Fellowship Program (GRFP) is a program administered by the National Science Foundation to ensure the vitality and diversity of the scientific and engineering workforce in the United States. This program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students who are pursuing research-based masters and doctoral degrees in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) or in STEM education.

This fellowship program provides three years of support for the graduate education of students who have demonstrated their potential for significant research accomplishments in STEM or STEM education. The NSF especially encourages women, individuals from underrepresented minority groups, persons with disabilities, veterans, and undergraduate seniors near graduation to apply.

Current Award Solicitation


NSF-GRFP Additional Info nsf logo

  • Deadlines
  • NSF GRFP Competition Results
  • Applicant and Reference Writer Assistance

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Financial Support

The graduate research fellowship provides generous support for graduate students and their research, including:

  • A $34,000-per-year stipend for three years;
  • A tuition waiver via a $12,000 annual cost-of-education allowance that is awarded to the graduate institution;
  • The U provides fellows with $2,000 per tenure year for research expenses;
  • Eligible for up to $2,500 per year for health insurance;

After one year of graduate study, fellows may apply for additional international research funding support from NSF, through programs such as GROW and GRIP.


Award cycle

The GRFP competition opens in late summer with submission deadlines in late October. The Graduate School provides a series of application preparation workshops late spring/early summer for interested students and their faculty mentors. The NSF announces awards and honorable mentions the following spring (usually early April). Awardees must then engage in their graduate program that following summer or fall after accepting the award.

Previous winning NSF GRFP essay examples

Previous Successful Proposals (login required)  Alex Lang's NSF site


The National Science Foundation GRF program recognizes and supports outstanding graduate students in NSF-supported science, technology, engineering, and mathematics disciplines who are pursuing research-based masters and doctoral degrees at accredited US institutions. NSF received over 14,000 applications for the 2014 competition, and made 2,000 fellowship award offers. Past fellows of the NSF GRFP include numerous Nobel Prize winners, U.S. Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu, Google founder, Sergey Brin and Freakonomics co-author, Steven Levitt.

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Matthew Plooster, EdD

Fellowships & Benefits Manager


Last Updated: 8/13/22