March 28 Deadline: New Applicants to the Princeton Climate and Energy Scholars (PECS) Program

Holly Welles ・ High Meadows Environmental Institute

The Faculty Board of Princeton Climate and Energy Scholars (PECS) is seeking applications from talented and highly motivated graduate students throughout the University who are conducting research within the broad area of climate and energy. PECS is designed to enhance the graduate research experience by encouraging students to transcend the boundaries of their fields. PECS fosters a common intellectual adventure.

Since the creation of the group in 2008, PECS has sought a balanced membership across disciplines. However, the social sciences and the humanities have been under-represented. Accordingly, we especially invite students in these areas to apply.

Students nominate themselves. In their self-nominations, applicants should submit two short statements, in at most 250 words each:

  1. The applicant should summarize their research topic and its intersections with energy and climate.
  2. The applicant should explain how they would contribute to the PECS community, citing any previous extracurricular experiences to demonstrate leadership and initiative.

Applicants must also provide a letter of recommendation from their primary advisor highlighting their academic qualifications and their capacity for initiative. The selection process is rigorous. Please email your application materials to Holly Welles, Manager of Communications and Outreach, Applications are due Friday, March 28th, 2014.

PECS is largely governed by its student members. Students plan their own meetings. They meet once a month by themselves, over lunch or dinner, to introduce their work to each other. In these informal discussions, they probe topics remote from their own research. The students also have a dinner each month with the PECS Faculty Board where members of the board or visitors to the campus introduce their research.

PECS membership lasts for two years. Students selected in this round will begin their tenure in the spring of 2014. In the selection process, priority will be given to 2nd and 3rd year Ph.D. students. Generally, first-year applicants are not admitted, although exceptions have been made for outstanding applicants. PECS fellows are eligible to receive up to $1000 to cover approved expenses associated with their graduate research. Funds may be used for a range of purposes, including fieldwork support, travel, conference participation, the purchase of equipment, and costs associated with data analysis and facilities use. In addition, an annual budget of $15,000 is available to support activities that the scholars conduct as a group. For example in 2013, PECS scholars travelled to India to exchange energy and climate insights with faculty and students at several academic institutions.

PECS is supported by the Princeton Environmental Institute. For more information on the group, please visit the PECS website. For questions about the application process, please contact DJ Bozym, Tristen Hohman, or Holly Welles.

Thank you on behalf of Robert H. Socolow, PECS Faculty Coordinator, Head of the Climate and Energy Challenge, and Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and the Princeton Environmental Institute.