NHAES Graduate Research Assistantship Support Program

Updated August 2014

Among the goals of the New Hampshire Agricultural Experiment Station (NHAES) is to enhance the productivity and impacts of its funded research, increase effectiveness of our funded faculty members, strengthen the associated graduate program, and help train the next generation of agricultural scientists. The GRA Support Program is intended to increase engagement of excellent doctoral students in NHAES research activities.

Funding Amount, Duration and Timing

The NHAES Graduate Research Assistantships Program will cover 12-month half-time (both AY and summer) stipend plus tuition and health insurance costs for two (2) years, to cover students who work directly on NHAES research projects. The students must actually work at least an average of 20 hours per week on the NHAES project to comply with federal time and effort reporting regulations. Funding of doctoral students will receive preferential consideration. It is the responsibility of the faculty member to ensure that the balance of student program costs until the student graduates, including stipend/tuition/health fees and sufficient operations funding, are covered through sources outside COLSA and NHAES. Teaching assistantships and other internal sources do not qualify, as one key goal is to stimulate graduate student support through extramural funding.

Annual funding will cover fall and spring semesters of the academic year and the following summer.

Note proposals are submitted by and awards made to individual faculty members, rather than to student applicants.

To facilitate timely identification of suitable graduate students, faculty PIs will be notified of GRA funding awards during late winter, so they may accept new graduate students to begin the following fall semester. Because 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 atypical case of prior written agreement. Unspent dollars may not be carried over.

Eligibility and Award Criteria

Funding is available to faculty having active NHAES projects that are awarded through the regular competitive review process. The preferred time for faculty to apply for GRA funding is when sufficient time remains in their approved research project; generally concurrent with a new/revised Hatch, Hatch-Multistate or McIntire-Stennis project proposal submission or the first year of project funding to ensure at least two years funded project duration to accommodate the GRA.

Relevance to the NHAES funding mandates will have been addressed during the Hatch, Hatch-Multistate or McIntire-Stennis project review process. Award criteria therefore target the PI’s demonstrated past and anticipated future research productivity, including a mixture of the following:

  • professional accomplishments record of scholarly publications (last five years)
  • record of scholarly publications (last five years only)
  • record of research impacts and outcomes (last five years only)
  • leveraging of resources through extramural funding (last five years only)
  • graduate students mentored and their outcomes 
  • the supported GRA’s proposed research role and activities 
  • the supported GRA’s research relevance to local/regional and national priorities 
  • potential for individual and programmatic productivity and impacts
  • other considerations that advocate for a sound investment of NHAES funds

Proposal Timing and Format

An annual request for GRA funding proposals will occur each year, concurrent with the annual request for NHAES project proposals. Award decisions will be made very soon following review of NHAES project proposals, so those PIs receiving approval for new projects may be considered for GRA funding.

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