Sustainability Fellowship Application Information

About the Program

UNH Sustainability Fellowships pair exceptional students from across the U.S. with municipal, educational, corporate, and non-profit partners in New England to work on transformative sustainability initiatives each summer.  Sustainability Fellows undertake challenging projects that are designed to create an immediate impact, offer a quality learning experience, and foster meaningful collaboration.  Fellows work on-site with their mentors at partner organizations during the summer, supported by a network of Fellows, partners, alumni, and the UNH Team.  Graduate students, exceptional undergraduate students, and recent graduates from any accredited college or university are eligible to apply.  

About the Fellowships

18 Sustainability Fellowships are available for summer 2020.  Each Fellowship focuses on a discrete project and is hosted by a different organization.  Projects are designed to offer the Fellows autonomy with mentorship, to lead to tangible results, and to connect to one another.  Applicants may apply to be considered for up to three Fellowships, and should select the best match for their interests and background based on the topic area (e.g. food, energy, climate, etc.), the type of work (e.g. research, planning, outreach, etc.), the type of organization (e.g. municipal, non-profit, educational, etc.), the skillset required, and the project location.  

Fellowship Expectations

Fellows are expected to be primarily dedicated to their assigned projects throughout the summer, and also participate in a variety of networking activities, professional development opportunities, and presentations coordinated by UNHSI.  Specifically, Fellows are expected to: 

  • May 26-28, 2020: attend a mandatory orientation at UNH prior to the start of the fellowship term. 
  • June 1 - August 14, 2020: work full-time on-site at the partner organization for a cumulative commitment of 10 weeks / 400 hours.  (The Fellowship term is 12 weeks, including orientation, allowing for time off, which is arranged between Fellow and supervisor.) Partner organizations are located throughout New England – see each position description  for specific work locations. 
  • Complete a fellowship project according to the work plan. 
  • Participate in weekly webinars or advisory group meetings. 
  • July 10 and August 7: present work at mandatory mid-term and final poster sessions at UNH. 
  • Engage in additional professional development, networking, and advisory activities as offered. 
  • Provide and receive feedback at the end of the fellowship. 

What Fellows Gain

Fellowships are opportunities for highly skilled and motivated students to contribute to unique and exciting new projects and initiatives. As a result, fellows will gain: 

  • New skills and knowledge; 
  • Access to extensive new professional contacts and networks 
  • Material to add to their professional portfolios 
  • Compensation for their work 
  • Potential for academic credit awarded through the student’s home institution 
  • Potential for integration of Fellowship project into thesis/dissertation work 
  • The fulfillment associated with “owning” a project, accomplishing meaningful work and connecting with a community of like-minded individuals 


Fellows are UNH employees and receive a $6500 summer stipend, which is taxable, and paid in bi-weekly installments over the course of the Fellowship term.  

Fellows are expected to use their stipends to cover their own living expenses.  Summer housing is not provided.  Because of the short-term nature of these positions, Fellows are not benefits-eligible.  

Travel scholarships may be available to individuals traveling from outside of New England to participate in a Fellowship.  Travel support is also available during the summer for travel between project sites and Durham for required program events.       


Students currently enrolled in or recently graduated from any accredited undergraduate or graduate degree program are welcome to apply.  Each Fellowship includes specific requirements in terms of academic background, skills, and experience – these vary widely – refer to individual position descriptions  for details.  Because this is a competitive program, and the projects are designed to be led by the Fellows, most successful applicants are advanced undergraduates, or graduate students.  First and second year undergraduates are welcome to apply, with the understanding that most Fellowships are awarded to more advanced students.  A couple Fellowships are restricted to students from specific colleges/universities, because work in the communities is required before or after the Fellowship term – these are noted within the relevant position descriptions. 

Application Deadline: February 10, 2019

More Information

Sign up now to attend an Informational Webinar on January 31 at 12PM (Eastern), or an Information Session at UNH on February 4 at 1PM (Eastern).  

What to Expect After Applying

  • Review of applications will take place in February.   
  • Interviews will be conducted virtually (via Zoom) during March.  If you are selected for an interview, UNHSI will contact you to schedule a time to talk with representatives from UNH and the partner organization hosting a specific project. 
  • Fellowship offers will be extended in late March. 
  • Additional information regarding planning for the summer will be provided thereafter. 

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