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Research Fellowships

Sponsored by The Research Ranch Foundation and Wells Fargo Bank

Purpose: To support non-destructive research in the natural sciences, with emphasis on conservation ecology focused on species, communities, ecosystems and ecosystem services, or human ecology in semiarid grassland, savanna, and riparian areas of the Sonoran and Chihuahuan ecoregions; research proposals within the earth sciences are also encouraged. Applications that propose nondestructive, non-invasive research at and around the Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch of the National Audubon Society will be especially welcome.

Amount: $2000 per fellowship, which is considered to cover costs of the study, including room, board, transportation, and minor equipment. Payment will be made directly to successful applicants.

Application deadline: 1 February 2013

Awards announcement: Early March 2013

Duration: Study to be completed within one year.

Eligibility: Undergraduate or graduate students currently enrolled at recognized academic institutions.

Application Requirements: Applications must be received electronically, and must include four parts in the order given below:

  1. Deadline: 1 February 2013
  2. Submission procedure: Email to W. R. Osterkamp
  3. Awards will be announced in early March, 2013.
  4. Application structure: Must include all four sections in the order given below:
    1. Biography (one page) of applicant including contact information, field experience, relevant courses completed,
    2. and other information the applicant deems relevant.
    3. Research proposal (two pages maximum, excluding citations), that describes the work to be accomplished, its ecological or biophysical significance, relevance to contemporary ecology or earth science, and a tentative timeline. All information, excluding literature citations, must adhere to the two-page limit.
    4. Budget (one-page).
    5. Letter of support (one) from the faculty advisor stating that the applicant is capable of conducting the proposed research. The letter should describe the level of supervision that is to be provided or indicate how the work can be accomplished independently. The applicant's work plan should be endorsed by the student's faculty advisor in the case of graduate students, or the student's faculty mentor in the case of undergraduates.
  5. Format: 1 inch margins (maximum), 12 point font (minimum)
  6. Special considerations will be given to
    1. projects that involve or include the Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch of the National Audubon Society, near Elgin, Arizona (applicants are encouraged to consider this site for part or all of the field work)*
    2. efforts that provide the foundation (e.g. literature review) for larger proposals that would focus on transborder issues. Examples include the measurement of ecosystem services provided by semiarid grasslands, status of research associated with carbon sequestration of semiard grasslands, correlation of hydroecologic monitoring of grasslands to the ecosystem services they provide, as well as proposals that consider the phenological reactions of grasslands to climate change, and how changes and ecological conditions affect populations of native species such as bats, other small mammals, and the Chiricahua leopard frog.

Address questions to W. R. Osterkamp (520-670-6821 ex. 113).

The Research Ranch Foundation is a private, nonprofit organization that promotes scientific research at the Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch, Elgin, AZ, and elsewhere in the American Southwest. The Foundation assists in the management of the Ranch and fulfillment of its mission.

* Description: The mission of the Appleton-Whittell Research Ranch of the National Audubon Society is to formulate, test, and demonstrate methods to rehabilitate and safeguard the bioregion, and provide assistance to citizens and policy-makers in the protection and stewardship of our native ecosystems, natural resources and quality of life. Research Ranch Research Permit: Any research proposed to be conducted at the Research Ranch must be non-destructive relative to habitat, ecosystems, and biophysical resources. If the proposed study is to be conducted at the Research Ranch, an application must be approved by Linda Kennedy, PhD, Director (520-455-5522), before applying to the Research Ranch Foundation for a fellowship. Application forms and information about the site can be found here .

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