U.S. Coastal Research Program - Master or Doctoral

U.S. Department of Defense (DOD)
Reference Code
How to Apply

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The U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center's Coastal & Hydraulics Laboratory (CHL) performs research on ocean, estuarine, riverine, and watershed systems in support of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and the Department of Defense (DOD) Task Force in support of the Ocean Commission. A multi-disciplinary team of scientists, engineers, and support personnel work in CHL's internationally known, unique facilities. This team has developed state-of-the-art experimental and computational models for solving water resource problems worldwide. CHL primarily supports the DOD and the Corp's districts, but also interfaces with other federal, state and local agencies, academia, conservation groups, and the general public, as appropriate. The Research Participation Program for USACE-ERDC-CHL provides opportunities to participate in new and on-going applied research and development projects. 

The U.S. Coastal Research Program (USCRP) was created to develop, coordinate, and enable a National science plan to address growing needs of coastal communities. Researchers from federal agencies, academia, industry, and non-governmental organizations work together to identify priorities that support coastal stakeholders in activities such as emergency response, resource management, planning, and engineering. By fostering existing partnerships and multi-agency collaborations, the USCRP increases the value and impact of these coastal research applications. Through user-driven topical workshops (Elko et al. (2016); USCRP (2019)), the USCRP initiates conversation between users and researchers to help ensure that USCRP research projects address societal needs along the coastline (Stockdon et al. (2019)). By leveraging and expanding federal funding, opportunities are created for coastal science and engineering university programs to advance their research directions, provide graduate student opportunities, and connect their work to National coastal priorities (Rosati et al. (2019)). The USCRP also sponsored a multi-agency, academic and non-governmental organization, collaborative, community experiment called DUNEX (During Nearshore Event Experiment) to study nearshore coastal processes during coastal storms and ultimately improve our knowledge and ability to predict during-storm processes and impacts.  DUNEX addresses this need and this goal by collecting a shared data set, quantifying storm processes and impacts during storm events (Cialone et al. (2019)).

Since 2016, the USCRP has funded 62 academic research studies to address coastal research needs in several priority areas including long-term and short-term nearshore coastal processes. Results from these studies have been documented in literature and implemented in advancements to technology, methods, numerical models, and other mechanisms. There is a need to summarize the project outcomes, successes, lessons learned, and degree of transition into practice; and identify technologies that could benefit the USACE and USGS as well as synthesize remaining gaps in each topic area.   

What will I be doing?

Utilizing documentation from the first 62 funded USCRP research projects as sources, this project will involve reviewing research results, conducting analysis of advancements, assessing outcomes, and evaluating opportunities for transitioning U.S. Coastal Research Program (USCRP) academic research into practice. Under the guidance of a mentor, you will document research findings, scientific advancements, benefits to coastal communities, as well as metrics such as supported students and career paths, and follow-on studies. End products include; but may not be limited to, a searchable award database and visual communication products and reports documenting findings and recommendations.

You will also have the opportunity to engage with the USCRP leadership team, including federal, academic, and NGO scientists in the planning and coordination of future research funding opportunities through workshops and monthly meetings as well as preparation of documentation. Engagement in the planning, coordination, and interaction with Federal and academic researchers as well as NGOs and stakeholders for the 10-year look back at USCRP advancements and a path forward will put you on the cutting edge of coastal research. 

Why should I apply?

This fellowship provides the opportunity to independently utilize your skills and engage with experts in innovative ideas to move the proposed research forward.

Where will I be located? Location Varies

What is the anticipated stat date?

ERDC-CHL is ready to make an appointment immediately. Exact start date will be determined at the time of selection and in coordination with the selected candidates. 

What is the length of the appointment? 

This ORISE appointment is a full-time twelve month opportunity. Appointment may be extended depending on funding availability, project assignment, program rules, and availability of the participant.

What are the benefits?

You will receive a stipend to be determined by ERDC-CHL. Stipends are typically based on the participant’s academic standing, discipline, experience, and research facility location. Other benefits may include the following:

  • Health Insurance Supplement. Participants are eligible to purchase health insurance through ORISE
  • Relocation Allowance
  • Training and Travel Allowance

Nature of the Appointment

You will not enter into an employee/employer relationship with ORISE, ORAU, DOD, or any other office or agency. Instead, you will be affiliated with ORISE for the administration of the appointment through the ORISE appointment letter and Terms of Appointment.


Masters or PhD in Marine Sciences, Earth Sciences, Environmental Science, Geography, Geology, Coastal Engineering, Science Communication, or related fields. 

Favorable skills in coastal science and strong verbal and written communication as well as reading comprehension skills. Additional skills include data analysis and synthesis, proficiency in excel, and the ability to research independently and as a team member. You should be able to analyze and synthesize scientific research outcomes and successfully communicate their importance and value.  

 A complete application consists of:

  • Zintellect profile
  • Essay Questions - The application includes questions specific to the opportunity
  • Academic Records - An official transcript or copy of the student academic records printed by the applicant or by academic advisors from internal institution systems may be submitted.
  • One (1) recommendation - Your application will be considered incomplete and will not be reviewed until one recommendation is submitted. We encourage you to contact your recommender(s) as soon as you start your application to ensure they are able to complete the recommendation form and to let them know to expect a message from Zintellect. Recommenders will be asked to rate your scientific capabilities, personal characteristics, and describe how they know you. You can always log back in to your Zintellect account and check the status of your application. The status will go from Started to Submitted and then to Completed once the required recommendations have been received

Submitted documents must have all social security numbers, student identification numbers, and/or dates of birth removed (blanked out, blackened out, made illegible, etc.) prior to uploading into the application system. If you have questions, send an email to usace@orise.orau.gov. Please list the reference code of this opportunity in the subject line of the email. All documents must be in English or include an official English translation. Please understand that ORISE does not review applications or select applicants; selections are made by the sponsoring agency identified on this opportunity. All application materials should be submitted via the “Apply” button at the bottom of this opportunity listing. Please do not send application materials to the email address above.

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Eligibility Requirements
  • Citizenship: U.S. Citizen Only
  • Degree: Master's Degree or Doctoral Degree received within the last 60 months or currently pursuing.
  • Discipline(s):
    • Chemistry and Materials Sciences (12 )
    • Communications and Graphics Design (4 )
    • Computer, Information, and Data Sciences (17 )
    • Earth and Geosciences (21 )
    • Engineering (27 )
    • Environmental and Marine Sciences (14 )
    • Life Health and Medical Sciences (48 )
    • Mathematics and Statistics (11 )
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences (29 )
  • Age: Must be 18 years of age