NHAES Projects and Assistantships

The Administrative Manual for Hatch funding specifies that “The scope of agricultural research which may be conducted under the Hatch Act … includes research on all aspects of agriculture, including: soil and water conservation and use; plant and animal production, protection, and health; processing, distributing, safety, marketing, and utilization of food and agricultural products; forestry, including range management and range products, multiple use of forest and rangelands, and urban forestry; aquaculture; home economics and family life; human nutrition; rural and community development; sustainable agriculture; molecular biology; and biotechnology. Research may be conducted on problems of local, state, regional, or national concern.” 

Further, recent directives from USDA-NIFA specify “every Hatch research project must have clear and documented relevance as part of the project to agricultural science. Thus, in your project initiations, relevance to agricultural science needs to be evident or explicit.” 

The Hatch program is our largest source of research support funding, with more than three times the direct research support expenditures (not counting those of the farms/facilities, staff, etc.) than for the McIntire-Stennis program.

Research project funding cycles are based on the federal fiscal year of October 1 through September 30. Approved standard Hatch (with or without a multistate component) projects will generally have a funding cycle of three years. At the federal level, multistate projects are approved for five years; however, NHAES project directors must undergo internal NHAES review, including submitting a proposal before joining a multistate project and three years thereafter. Specific projects and/or investigators may be approved for up to a five-year funding cycle when they are identified by the NHAES Internal Review Committee and Director’s Office as representing consistently strong levels of productivity, impacts, and leveraging of resources. There is no maximum limit to the overall length of time for which funded investigators may maintain a consecutive or intermittent series of funded projects, if they are continually approved through the competitive review and evaluation process. 

For more information, please see the NHAES Research Projects Manual. 

Hatch-Multistate projects are an important option and may be folded into standard Hatch proposals. Faculty participation in Hatch Multistate Research Projects is an excellent way to enhance collaboration with disciplinary peers from other states, and is also a requirement of the NHAES’s acceptance of USDA Hatch funds. These funds can only be used for cooperative research involving two or more State Agricultural Experiment Stations (SAES). The formal multistate research program facilitates collaborative research on high-priority topics among the SAES in partnership with the USDA, other research institutions and agencies, and the Cooperative Extension Service. Opportunities and problem solving activities that concern more than one state, but which are beyond the scope of a single SAES, can thereby be approached in a more efficient and comprehensive manner. 

Of particular potential interest to faculty participants should be the opportunity, which arises during annual meetings of the multistate project, to work with, learn about, and get to know national peers who have explicit interest in similar topical areas. Many of these colleagues will likely populate competitive grant review panels and serve in other important roles related to UNH faculty career activities or as potential professional references (e.g., tenure and promotion), etc. Therefore there is significant professional value and opportunity in developing relationships and routinely sharing research activities and results with scientific peer networks through these multistate research projects. 

Research project funding cycles are based on the federal fiscal year of October 1 through September 30. Approved standard Hatch (with or without a multistate component) projects will generally have a funding cycle of three years. At the federal level, multistate projects are approved for five years; however, NHAES project directors must undergo internal NHAES review, including submitting a proposal before joining a multistate project and three years thereafter. Specific projects and/or investigators may be approved for up to a five-year funding cycle when they are identified by the NHAES Internal Review Committee and Director’s Office as representing consistently strong levels of productivity, impacts, and leveraging of resources. There is no maximum limit to the overall length of time for which funded investigators may maintain a consecutive or intermittent series of funded projects, if they are continually approved through the competitive review and evaluation process. 

For more information, please see the NHAES Research Projects Manual. 

The scope of research which may be conducted under the McIntire-Stennis Cooperative Forestry Act includes investigations relating to the reforestation and management of land for the production of timber and other related products of the forest; management of forest and related watershed lands to improve conditions of water flow and to protect resources against floods and erosion; management of forest and related rangeland for production of forage for domestic livestock and game as well as improvement of food and habitat for wildlife; management of forest lands for outdoor recreation and the protection of the forest and its resources against fire, insects, diseases, or other destructive agents; utilization of wood and other forest products; development of sound policies for the management of forest lands and the harvesting and marketing of forest products; and such other studies as may be necessary to obtain the fullest and most effective use of forest resources. 

Examples of the research areas covered by McIntire-Stennis funds include: ecological restoration; catastrophe management; valuing and trading ecological services; energy conservation; biomass energy and bio-based materials development, forest fragmentation, carbon sequestration and climate change; and ways of fostering healthy forests and a globally competitive forest resources sector. In addition, high priority issues include science of integration (ecosystem or landscape approaches, including interdisciplinary multistate projects); forest ecosystem services; human attitudes and behaviors; conflict, uncertainty, and decision-making; technological advancements (biotechnology, nanotechnology, and geospatial technology), productivity, and forest applications; and urban ecosystems. 

Research project funding cycles are based on the federal fiscal year of October 1 through September 30. Approved standard McIntire-Stennis projects will generally have a funding cycle of three years. Specific projects and/or investigators may be approved for up to a five-year funding cycle when they are identified by the NHAES Internal Review Committee and Director’s Office as representing consistently strong levels of productivity, impacts, and leveraging of resources. There is no maximum limit to the overall length of time for which funded investigators may maintain a consecutive or intermittent series of funded projects, if they are continually approved through the competitive review and evaluation process.

For more information, please see the NHAES Research Projects Manual. 

The New Hampshire Agricultural Experiment Station (NHAES) will support a modest number of graduate research assistants (GRA) to work with highly productive faculty on their NHAES-funded research projects. This is part of the NHAES goals to enhance the productivity and impacts of its funded research, to strengthen the abilities of our scientists, and to help train the next generation of agricultural scientists.

NHAES will provide funding on a competitive basis to support 24-month, 0.5 FTE stipend plus tuition and health fees for graduate students working on active NHAES projects. Strong preference will be given to doctoral student assistantships. The graduate student must work 20 hours on NHAES project to comply with federal time and effort reporting regulations. This comes with the expectation that the Project Directors will cover the remainder of the student’s full graduate program costs (stipend/tuition/fees/operations) with his or her own extramural funding. Internal resources, including a teaching assistantship, cannot be used to pay for these expenses, as a key goal of the NHAES funding is to stimulate graduate student support through extramural funds. GRA Support Program awards are available to faculty who are engaged in active NHAES projects. Submissions will be first and foremost evaluated based on their overall merit; when projects are deemed to be of similar strength and importance, due to limited resources, priority for funding will be given to project directors who are members of the graduate faculty and for students in COLSA graduate programs. Proposals are submitted by and awards made to individual faculty members, not student applicants.

Award Criteria

The NHAES half-time GRA must work at least 20 hours a week on the project director’s NHAES research.  For postdocs, the candidate is expected to work full time (40 hours per week) on the project director’s NHAES research. Because personnel awards are targeted to assist in completing NHAES research, the award criteria focus on project directors’ demonstrated and anticipated future research productivity and demonstrated ability to leverage NHAES funds with external grant dollars to support their work and/or GRAs.

In developing the proposal, please address the following:

  • The proposed research roles and activities of the graduate student and how these activities will help expand the breadth of NHAES project objectives;
  • How the graduate student will aid in strengthening or expanding the impacts and outcomes of the ongoing or proposed NHAES research;
  • How the activities of the graduate student will aid the project director in potentially leveraging NHAES research for obtaining extramural funding and/or if matching funds are already available;
  • Evidence, especially as it may relate to the ongoing NHAES research, of the project director’s professional accomplishments, recent scholarly publication activity, and recent extramural support;
  • Evidence of the project director’s ability to mentor graduate students;
  • Other considerations that advocate for a sound investment of NHAES funds.

NHAES and COLSA are committed to growing the diversity and inclusiveness of people and ideas in order to push the frontiers, impacts, and recognition of our research; the training of excellent future scientists; and reaching a broader population of stakeholders locally and globally. As such, we highly encourage that you consider and briefly address how you may be able to contribute to NHAES and COLSA's commitment.

Additionally, please note that while NHAES supports the institution’s strategic mission to grow doctoral student numbers, we are also aware that differences in research project objectives exist and that graduate students and post-doctoral scientists may bring a different set of skillsets, which may be appropriate for specific research needs. As such, when discussing your request for additional project personnel, please specifically address how the specific skillsets of that individual will address the project needs and missions. 

Lastly, because personnel funding received by NHAES is on an annual "use it or lose it" basis, these dollars must be expended only during the two award years except in the unusual case of prior written agreement. Unspent dollars may not be carried over or retargeted to other uses.

Proposal Timing and Format

An annual request for GRA funding proposals will occur each year, following the annual request for NHAES project proposals. This year the proposals must be submitted by November 13. Award decisions will be made shortly following the review of new NHAES project proposals in early-2021, so that project directors receiving approval for new projects may be considered for GRA or postdoc support funding.

All proposals will be completed within the NHAES proposal submission portal and will require addressing the award criteria. 

Thank you for considering this program. Please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me if you have questions.

Anton Bekkerman
Director, NH Agricultural Experiment Station
Rudman Hall, G15A
Phone: (603)862-1676
Email: anton.bekkerman@unh.edu

The NHAES Director's Office will contribute toward peer-reviewed publications resulting from NHAES-funded projects. Upon receipt of an invoice with details on relevant charges for the publication covered by this signed agreement, NHAES will cost share 50 percent of publication charges up to $1,500 (e.g. when the total charge $3,000). The authors will provide NHAES office copy of the shareable PDF file for our records and for potential distribution to selected libraries, archives, etc. 

To request support for page / publication charges, please complete the electronic Manuscript Approval Form.

When filling out the form, in addition to providing information about the publication, you will also need to provide the NHAES Hatch, Hatch-Multistate, or McIntire-Stennis project number (e.g., NH00XXX) and the USDA project accession number.  

To look up USDA project accession number: 

  1. Visit https://cris.nifa.usda.gov/search.html
  2. Select assisted search in the left-side menu.
  3. Enter your last name in the "Investigator" search box.
  4. Click the Search button. The red "Records Retrieved" indicator should display a number greater than zero.
  5. Click the Display Results button and search for the name of your project. The accession number will be in the "Acc No" column on the left.

Additionally, you will be asked to upload a proof of your manuscript, which must include the following acknowledgment in order for you to be reimbursed:

“Partial funding was provided by the New Hampshire Agricultural Experiment Station. This is Scientific Contribution Number ________. This work is/was supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (Insert Project Type, e.g. Hatch/Evans-Allen/McIntire-Stennis) Project (Insert Accession Number).”

The Scientific Contribution Number will be provided to you upon approval of the electronic Manuscript Approval Form.