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General Eligibility Criteria

Qualified applicants will be considered without regard to race, creed, color, age, sex, or national origin.

Education and Experience - Applicants to the NRC Research Associateship Programs must have earned a Ph.D., Sc.D., M.D., D.V.M., or academically equivalent research doctorate before beginning tenure. You may apply before completing your degree; however, to begin an award, you must either 1) provide a copy of your diploma, or 2), if graduation has not yet taken place, have the graduate dean, registrar, or recorder of your university (not the department chairman or major professor) certify in writing, directly to the Fellowships Office, that you have met all requirements for the degree before the start of your tenure at the laboratory. The National Energy Technology Laboratory Methane Hydrates Fellowship Program (NETL/MHFP) supports highly qualified postgraduate students in the advancement of Methane Hydrate science by making awards to M.S., Ph.D., and Postdoctoral level candidates.

Citizenship and Immigration Status - Citizenship requirements for the NRC Research Associateship Program vary depending on the sponsoring federal laboratory. For details on visa options please click here. Applicants should also refer to specific detail of citizenship requirements for the laboratory to which they are applying.

Level – The Fellowships Office makes Research Associateship awards at the Postdoctoral and Senior researcher level and Fellowship awards at the MastersDoctorate and Postdoctoral levels. 

Postdoctoral Associateships are awarded to persons who have held the doctorate for less than five years at the time of application and are made initially for one or two years with a possibility for renewal for one or two additional years. Applicants should refer to specific detail of tenure length for the laboratory to which they are applying. 

Senior Associateships are awarded to applicants who have held the doctorate five years or more at the time of application or to persons who hold a permanent appointment in academia, government, or industry and have research experience that has resulted in significant contributions and recognition as established investigators in their specialized fields. Although awards to Senior Research Associates are usually for one year, awards for periods of three months or longer may be considered. Since not all Research Associateship sponsors accept applications for Senior awards, applicants should check the detail of the particular program to which they are applying. 

Methane Hydrate Research Fellowship awards are made to carefully selected Master’s level, PhD level, and Postdoctoral level scientists and engineers in national competitions held two times each year. These awards provide opportunities that enable these scientists and engineers to increase their proficiency in conducting research on the subject of methane hydrates and advance the research program of NETL. The research may be pursued at NETL labs, at other national or federal government labs, or at accredited universities.

Prior Affiliation with the Laboratory - A primary objective of the NRC Research Associateship Programs is to provide a mechanism to bring new ideas and sources of stimulation to the sponsoring laboratory. For that reason, persons with recent prior affiliation with a specific laboratory/agency may not be eligible to apply for an Associateship award at that same laboratory/agency. Prior affiliation includes direct employment relationships either with the laboratory or with a contractor whose work is performed at the laboratory. Affiliation as a student (internships, research collaborations) would not be disqualifying unless the proposed Research Adviser also served as the applicant’s dissertation Adviser.

Security Clearance - Some awards are contingent upon the satisfactory completion of a National Agency Check (NAC) or other clearance processes. Please refer to the specific clearance information for the laboratory to which you are applying. An unsatisfactory result from the investigation is cause to withdraw the Associateship award offer.

Reapplication - Candidates who were recommended for an award by the panels, but who were not offered an award because of funding or other limitations, may reapply at any time without a mandatory waiting period. Persons who have previously applied for an Associateship, but who were not recommended for an award by the panels, may reapply after one year. Persons who have previously held an Associateship may apply for another award only if a period of at least two years will have elapsed between termination of the first award and the proposed tenure of a second.

For program specific eligibility requirements, you must visit the webpage of the Participating Laboratory you are interested in applying to. Visit the list of Participating Laboratories.

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