Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences

CIRES Graduate Student Research Award Program

This CIRES program recognizes and sponsores excellent graduate students with salary, tuition, and more

two researchers wade next to inflatable rafts carrying monitoring equipment
Researchers Mylene Jacquemart of CU Boulder and Brandon Overstreet of USGS measure GNSS work with an Acoustic Doppler Current Profiler in Alaska.
- Toby Minear/CIRES

CIRES supports a Graduate Student Research Award program to promote student scholarship and research excellence. The goal of the program is to recognize the scholarship and merit of CIRES' outstanding graduate students. Any current Ph.D. student that is formally supervised by a CIRES Fellow or CIRES Researcher is eligible for this one-time award opportunity. Prospective graduate students are not eligible to apply. Applications for 2024 have closed, please check back in the fall for more information about 2025.

Graduate Student Research Awards support the equivalent of two semesters of funding to be spent as agreed to by the CIRES Advisor. Included in the GSRA are salary support, fully paid tuition, and a partially paid premium (91%) towards the Buff Gold Insurance Plan.


Any current PhD student enrolled in a University of Colorado Boulder Graduate Program and supervised by a CIRES Fellow or CIRES Researcher is eligible to apply.

Each CIRES Fellow or CIRES Researcher may select ONLY ONE student to compete for this award in a given year, so please contact your advisor to ensure you have his/her support before submitting your application. Previous GSRA (formerly the Graduate Student Fellowship) recipients are not eligible to apply.

Application Requirements

Candidates are required to submit the following materials:

  • CV
  • Graduate Transcripts
  • Research Plan (3 pages max., including references and figures)
  • Statement of CIRES engagement and value of CIRES to the applicant's career goals (500 words)

2024 Applications will be accepted until February 19, 2024.

Application Review and Selection

Applications are evaluated by a committee of CIRES Fellows, based on the following criteria: 

  • Exceptional achievement in graduate career at CIRES including awards, publications, and grades.
  • Engagement with and commitment to CIRES.
  • Research proposal quality.
  • The proposal should be innovative, feasible, and student-led. It should also be clear and concise.

Award Requirement

Please note that recipients are required to provide a profile photo, a short bio (1 or 2 sentences), and a research summary (2 or 3 sentences) for the GSRA website upon award.