Current ISU Students

Notice: All funded slots have been filled.  Applications for unfunded slots will be taken until September 1, 2022.


As a participant, we expect you to continue in your departmental research and study.  The traineeship will require a one-day program introduction, weekly meetings with your cohort. 6 two hour workshops per year, plus obtaining a graduate certificate in Data-Driven Food, Energy and Water Decision Making


Participation Options:

M.S and Ph.D. students are eligible for multiple levels of participation in the DataFEWSion Graduate Traineeship.

M.S. & Ph.D. students

  • Certificate only (apply through the graduate college)
  • Traineeship (must complete the application)
  • Open to domestic or international students

Ph.D. students

  • One year assistantships are available on a competitive basis (must complete the application and submit all required documents).
  • Assistantship benefits are $34,000/year plus tuition and healthcare for 12 months.
  • Since this is an NSF funded project, assistantships are limited to U.S. citizens and permanent residents. (Definition of a permanent resident: someone who has been granted the right to live in the United States indefinitely. Permanent residents are given what’s known as a “green card,” which is a photo ID card that proves their status)
  • Students from diverse backgrounds and those traditionally underrepresented are especially encouraged to apply.
Steps to Applying

Step 1: Complete the DataFEWSion application (traineeship & assistantship only)

The online application requires the following items:

Thought pieces

  1. Personal Statement – describe your research interests, why you would like to participate in the DataFEWSion Traineeship and any unique perspective or point of view you feel you would bring to the program (4000 character limit, including spaces, approximately 600 words).
  2. Career Goals – a summary of your future career plans (3000 character limit, including spaces). NOTE: If your course work does not display strong quantitative courses, please provide summary information on your quantitative aptitude and skills.
  3. Diversity & Inclusion – A statement of your experiences promoting diversity and inclusion – these could include advocacy, support, study, and experience with individuals and issues outside your personal background (3000 character limit, including spaces).  Inside Higher Education website has an excellent article on how to write a diversity statement.  The link is here

Our emphasis on Diversity and Inclusion question reflects:

  • NSF’s Vision: To cultivate an inclusive culture and work environment that reflects the diversity of our increasingly global community.
  • ISU’s Vision: We aim is to promote critical thinking, the responsible management of people, professional skills development, innovation in research, teaching, and learning, and the constructive expression of divergent viewpoints.

Required documents  (assistantship only)

  1. Letter of support from ISU major professor
  2. Transcripts
  3. Resume/CV

Follow this link to the rubric used in evaluating applications.

Step 2: Deadlines

Traineeship only

Applications for traineeships only will be reviewed monthly starting February 1st and acceptance offers made until the slots are full for the next academic year.


The deadline for applications is February 1st of each year.  Initial assistantship offers will be made by March 15th.  Applications submitted after February 1st will be considered on a space-available basis.

Step 3: Acceptance of Participation Agreement

If you are selected, you will be notified with the final step to complete and sign the participation agreement with your major professor.