WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Department of Energy Secretary Steven Chu today announced the launch of two new fellowship programs designed to attract the country's best and brightest scientific minds to work on advanced clean energy technologies. The two fellowship programs - the Postdoctoral Fellowships Program and the SunShot Initiative Fellowships Program - will prepare budding scientists and engineers for careers in clean energy. These programs will increase American economic competitiveness and support job growth by promoting science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, an essential part of President Obama's plan to win the future by out-educating and out-innovating the rest of the world.
"These investments in American ingenuity and discovery will strengthen our economy and help the next generation of U.S. scientists and engineers to launch their careers in clean energy," said Secretary Chu. "We need more of our young scientific minds to focus on clean energy solutions and pave the way for a cleaner, healthier environment. It's the only way to ensure America continues to lead in the world's growing clean energy economy."
Under the Postdoctoral Fellowships Program, DOE is seeking up to 20 postdoctoral fellows whose academic careers have focused on specific topics in the following technology areas: building efficiency, industrial efficiency, vehicles, fuel cells, biomass, geothermal, solar energy, and wind or water power. The Postdoctoral Fellowship Program will support research and development of breakthrough technologies over a two year period.
Selected fellows will be encouraged to pursue innovative, independent new projects in addition to the specific research project area selected by the fellow when applying to the program. Potential self-directed projects might include working with local organizations on topics of local energy efficiency or renewable energy, providing free scientific and technical expertise to a local start-up company, or writing grant proposals for distinct new work. Read more information on the EERE Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. Applications for EERE Postdoctoral Fellowships are due by June 30, 2011; Fellowships will begin by mid-November, 2011, and last up to two years.
The SunShot Initiative Fellowships Program will select either recent Masters or Ph.D. graduates to focus on critical technology innovations that will advance the SunShot goal of reducing the total cost of solar energy systems by about 75 percent so that they are cost competitive with other forms of energy without subsidies by the end of the decade. In the fellowship program, the selectees will aggressively drive innovations in the ways that solar systems are conceived, designed, manufactured, and installed. Selected fellows will work at DOE's Solar Energy Technologies Program headquarters in Washington, DC, and help develop new research and development programs to achieve the goal of $1a watt utility-level installed photovoltaics by 2020. Learn more about the SunShot Initiative Fellowship Program. More information is available on the SunShot Initiative website. Applications for the SunShot Initiative Fellowships Program are accepted on a rolling basis.