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GAANN Molecular Biotechnology

Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) Fellowship Program Program in Molecular Biotechnology

The GAANN Fellowship in Molecular Biotechnology is available for graduate students who intend to become university teachers and/or researchers. Fellows must pursue an interdisciplinary course of study, combining a major in one of the participating departments with a minor and research project in biotechnology. The Fellowship is awarded based on academic performance and financial need, upon the recommendation of the student’s department and approval by the Graduate School and the Fellowship Program Selections Committee.

To be eligible for consideration, the student must:

  1. Be enrolled full-time in (or admitted to) a doctoral program (Master’s leading to doctoral permitted) in one of the programs offered through departments participating in the Biotechnology Program (Animal Science; Biological and Agricultural Engineering; Biology; Biomedical Engineering; Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering; Chemistry; Civil Engineering; Clinical Sciences; Crop Science; Electrical and Computer Engineering; Entomology; Environmental and Molecular Toxicology; Food, Bioprocessing and Nutrition Sciences; Forestry and Environmental Resources; Genetics; Horticultural Science; Microbiology; Molecular and Structural Biochemistry; Molecular Biomedical Sciences; Plant Biology; Plant Pathology; Population Health and Pathobiology; Poultry Science; and Textile Engineering and Science);
  2. Pursue an interdisciplinary course of study with a minor and research project in biotechnology;
  3. Be a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or a permanent resident of the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands;
  4. Be committed to a career in university teaching and/or research;
  5. Have an outstanding undergraduate and (if applicable) graduate academic record (cumulative grade point average), as well as excellent scores on the verbal, quantitative, and analytic writing sections of the Graduate Record Examination;
  6. Have demonstrable identified financial need, determined according to federal guidelines. Financial need is based on information supplied by each student on the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).

Special Program Features:

  1. Fellowship Stipend: Up to $34,000 annually, depending on financial need. Most fellows typically qualify between $21,000 and $23,000 annually. (Fellows may have supplemental departmental support only to the extent that such support is justified by an assessment of financial need in excess of $34,000.)
    Financial need will be reassessed annually. Fellows are required to complete a new Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) each year.
  2. Tuition, Fees, and Health Insurance: The in-state portion of tuition and fees will be paid directly by the Graduate School to the Cashier’s Office. Out-of-state tuition remission will be provided by the Fellow’s graduate program (in accordance with Graduate Student Support Plan (GSSP) guidelines). Health insurance will be provided to all Fellows.
  3. Book, Equipment, Supply and Travel Allowance: The amount, if awarded, is determined annually. Please see the guidelines and administrative procedures for using these funds.
  4. Registration: Fellows must be full-time graduate students. Please see section 3.15 of the Graduate Administrative Handbook for full-time registration requirements. Fellows must be engaged in full-time coursework or research during each summer session. At no time during the Fellowship period may a GAANN Fellow engage in gainful employment other than part-time employment involved in teaching, research, or similar activities determined by the Graduate School to be in support of progress toward the degree.
  5. Teaching Experience and Other Activities: Each Fellow is required to have a two-semester supervised teaching experience during his or her doctoral program, preferably during the period supported by the Fellowship. This requirement could be fulfilled by participation for one year in the Preparing the Professoriate (PTP) program.
    Alternative plans for meeting the teaching experience requirement are possible but must be approved by the Program Director.
    Fellows will have the opportunity to participate in special activities such as interdisciplinary seminars, retreats and professional meetings.
  6. Renewal of GAANN Fellowship: Contingent upon the availability of funds, the Fellow’s graduate program has the option (but not the obligation) of re-nominating a Fellow for up to one additional year of GAANN fellowship support, provided that a) the Fellow is maintaining satisfactory progress in his or her doctoral program, as certified by his or her advisor and Director of Graduate Programs, b) the Fellow is maintaining a 3.5 GPA, and c) the Fellow’s research focus remains in molecular biotechnology.

Additional Requirements:

  1. The Fellow’s advisor must be a member of the Biotechnology faculty. (If the advisor is not yet a member of the Biotechnology faculty, he or she should contact Dr. Robert Kelly, Director of the Biotechnology Program, as to the application procedure.)
  2. A member of the GAANN Biotechnology Fellowship Committee must be included as a “normal” or an ad hoc (i.e., non-voting) member of the Fellow’s thesis advisory committee. In either case, the Fellow should include his or her GAANN representative in the activities of his or her committee such as meetings to discuss his or her progress, plan of work, etc. The faculty listed below are members of the GAANN Biotechnology Fellowship Committee:
    Dr. Robert Kelly (chair), Dr. Jason Haugh, Dr. Nanette Nascone-Yoder, Dr. Heike Sederoff, Dr. Barbara Sherry, and Dr. Jeff Yoder.
  3. The Fellow must engage in an on- or off-campus project designed to promote biotechnology education.

Additional Information:

  1. Nomination Form
  2. Supervised Teaching Requirements
  3. Status Report
  4. Evaluation Forms
  5. GAANN Questionnaire
  6. NC State Biotechnology Program
  7. North Carolina Biotechnology Center

For additional information on the GAANN Fellowship Program, please contact Dr. David Shafer, Assistant Dean of the Graduate School, at 919-515-4462 or via e-mail at