Sustainability Fellows

Sustainability Fellows are graduate students who receive a scholarship for their collaboration with OFS on sustainability research projects, including the biennial AASHE-STARS assessment of UTRGV's sustainability commitment across the campus.

Created in 2019, this program provides graduate students with an immersive research experience focused on sustainability.

The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) will competitively award one-year graduate fellowships to outstanding new students to engage in projects addressing sustainability and community resilience in the Rio Grande Valley coordinated by UTRGV’s Office of Sustainability.  The following guidelines may be downloaded here.



Sustainability Fellowships are available only to new, full-time graduate students who will enroll in any Master’s or doctoral program at UTRGV for the first time.  Continuing UTRGV graduate students are not eligible.  These fellowships cannot be combined with other graduate fellowships such as those from NIH, NSF, DOD, or USDA, etc.



A total of $15,000 will be awarded to each student in three separate installments; $6,250 in Spring 2019; $2,500 in Summer 2019 and $6,250 in Fall 2019. The fellowship funding will be directly applied to student’s tuition & fees bill for a minimum of 9 credit hours in Spring semester, 9 in Fall semester and 3 in Summer term; the remaining amount will be available to the student after the census day during each semester/term.



In addition to pursuing their graduate program, the Sustainability Fellows are expected to engage in an impactful sustainability and community resilience project within or outside the university coordinated by the UTRGV Office of Sustainability. To maintain the fellowship, student awardees are required to (i) submit a project progress report at the end of each semester/term and (ii) maintain a minimum OGPA of 3.20.   


Application Procedure

Interested students may apply for Sustainability Fellowships by downloading this application and submitting it complete with a one to two page statement describing their interest and experience in sustainability to:

Interested applicants must also simultaneously complete their application for admission to a Masters or doctoral program at the UTRGV Graduate College Website.  New students who have already applied for admission or have already been admitted to start from Fall 2019 may also apply for consideration of a Sustainability Fellowship award.


Selection criteria and Process

UTRGV’s Chief Sustainability Officer and the Graduate College Dean will review all applications and will make final selection of the candidates.  Graduate College Dean will notify the graduate program coordinator, department chair, college dean, and the student about the award and will also send congratulatory letters to all awardees.

If you do not find the answer to your question below, do not hesitate to call us at (956) 665-3030.

Graduate Student FAQ's
  • Will this conflict with my studies?

    The Sustainability Fellowship is intended to contribute to your academic career, not detract from it. Your Office for Sustainability research project can be part of your graduate student research, or can take the place of it entirely (with close communication with your graduate faculty advisor.)
  • How much time do Sustainability Fellows commit?

    Sustainability Fellows are expected to contribute up to 15 hours per week of research at the OFS office or as instructed.

Meet our Spring '19 sustainability Fellows!

  • Jeffrey Aquino-Gomez, Biology.
  • Diego Lopez, Mechanical Engineering.
  • Mauricio A. Pena, Biology.
  • Shreya Udawant, Biology.
  • Perla Melendez, English,
  • Diana Lara, Translation and Interpreting.
  • Lazaro Lopez-Mendez, Interdisciplinary Studies.
  • Yessenia Rodriguez, Computer Science.
  • Yessica Rodriguez, Computer Science.
  • Jeanette Moritz, I.S, Anthropology.