Grant Opportunities

UC Natural Reserve System

Mildred E. Mathias Graduate Student Research Grants

Mildred E. Mathias Graduate Student Research Grants are available to any graduate student enrolled at a University of California campus other than San Francisco who is conducting research at one or more of the 39 sites in the UC Natural Reserve System. A total of $38,000 will be available in grants, with a maximum award of $3,000 per applicant. Students from any academic discipline are eligible.  To learn more about this program visit the UCNRS website.

The annual Mathias grant competition is announced in July and closes mid-September. Awardees are expected to produce a paper or report, or present their findings in a suitable forum.  Recipients of Mildred E. Mathias Graduate Student Research Grants are invited to present their findings before peers at the NRS’s Mathias Symposium, which is held every two years.

Valentine Eastern Sierra Reserve Graduate Student Grant Competition

These awards are available for any graduate student planning to conduct research at the Valentine Eastern Sierra Reserve, Sierra Nevada Aquatic Research Lab and Valentine Camp, whether or not the student is attending the University of California. The deadline for applications is usually in January of each year and the maximum award is $3,000. To learn more about the application process or to download an application please visit their website.

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Joshua Tree National Park Association

Robert Lee Graduate Student Research Grant

Joshua Tree National Park has instituted a program to encourage independent field research by graduate students enrolled in accredited institutions. The program benefits the student researcher by providing an opportunity to demonstrate how their research can apply to land management issues. In addition, it provides park staff with a better understanding of the resources at Joshua Tree National Park. Thanks to The Lee Family Foundation, grants of up to $4,000 are available to assist students with expenses.  To learn more, visit the Joshua Tree National Park website.

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Southern California Botanists

You must be a member to apply; membership is $25/per year. Applications are usually due in November and maximum grant awards are $500/person/year. To learn more about these grants, please visit their website.

SCB Annual Grant Program

Southern California Botanists (SCB) supprts an annual grant program to support member research in botany (e.g. florisitcs, taxonomy, and ecology). Preference is given to research on southern California native species.

Susan Hobbs Grant for Field Research

In honor of Susan Hobbs, a long-time supporter and member of Southern California Botanists, an annual grant will be awarded for member research in field botany (e.g. floristics, taxonomy, and ecology). Grants must be used to support field work activities.

Alan Romspert Grant in Desert Botany

Supported by funds raised In memory of Alan Romspert, long-time board member and contributor to Southern California Botanists, a one-time grant will be awarded for desert botanical research.

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Torrey Botanical Society

Graduate Student Research Fellowship

The Torrey Botanical Society supports student research with an annual award of $2,500. Graduate students in botany who are members of the Society are eligible to apply for this award. This award must be used to help pay the costs of field work. Deadline for applications is 31 December of the year preceding the field work. Applications will be judged by a committee of the Council of the Society, and recipients will be announced before 1 April each year.

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Anza-Borrego Foundation & Institute

Howie Wier Memorial Conservation Grant

The Anza-Borrego Institute annually sponsors a competitive grants program to assist graduate students conducting field studies in ecology, systematics, evolutionary biology, and conservation biology in the Colorado Desert and Peninsular Range region of southern California. Grants of up to $2,000 will be awarded to assist graduate students with travel, supplies, equipment and other costs associated with field work. Proposals are generally due in November; to learn more about the application process or to download an application please visit their website.

Student Entomology Awards Program

The Anza-Borrego Institute annually sponsors a competitive grant program to assist university students conducting entomological research. Up to $1500 will be awarded to assist students with travel, supplies, equipment, and other costs associated with field work. Entomological studies based in Anza-Borrego Desert State Park and the surrounding ecological region are invited. Projects addressing studies in life histories, predator-prey relationships, insect-plant interactions (but not insects as pests), and conservation issues are suggested areas for study. Systematic studies or other projects that require large-scale collection are not a focus of this grant program. However, it is understood that some State-permitted collecting may be necessary. Proposals are generally due in November; to learn more about the application process or to download an application please visit their website.

Begole Archaeological Research Grant

The Begole Archaeological Research Grant (BARG) program is designed to support scientific archaeological research in Colorado Desert District parks, in the Colorado Desert, and in the immediately surrounding area. There are no restrictions on the topics of the research proposals, as long as they are archaeological in scope and/or focus. Priority may be given to original research dealing with the earliest periods of prehistory. Applicants may be registered undergraduate or graduate students, faculty and/or titled researchers at academic institutions, staff of federal and state agencies, or independent scholars. Proposals are generally due in May; to learn more about the application process or to download an application please visit their website.

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California Native Plant Society

Mary DeDecker Botanical Grant Program

In 2001, the Bristlecone Chapter established this grant program as a fitting tribute to a renowned local botanist and a beloved founding member of their chapter. The purpose of these grants is to honor the memory of Mary by facilitating research and projects that increase the understanding and appreciation of our region’s native flora and ecosystems. The only requirement is that the project be relevant to the native plants of the northern Mojave Desert, Sierra Nevada, and Great Basin portions of eastern California. Selected researchers received up to $500 each for expenses and recipients are asked to present their findings to the Bristlecone Chapter either at a regular meeting or in an article in the newsletter. Grant proposals are generally due in December, please visit the website to download an application.

Grants have been awarded to graduate students for research on various ecological, taxonomic and physiological aspects of plants, in addition, grants have also been given to fund educational programs on native plants for local schools.

CNPS Education Program Research Grants

California Native Plant Society (CNPS) offers grants to support research on California’s native flora. The Educational Grants Committee administers the Educational Grants Program. Four types of grants are available, listed below. The Committee determines which type of grant is appropriate for each proposal funded. Grants are awarded to a person only once during the duration of a project. Currently, there is not a standard grant amount or official funding limit on grants. Funds available to the committee, number of proposals, and merit of the proposals determine amounts awarded. The average amount awarded in recent years is $700. The Society hopes grants in larger amounts may be feasible in the future. Proposals are due September 30th of each year. To learn more about the application process or to download an application please visit their website.

The Helen Sharsmith Grant.  These grants, established in 1983, pay memorial tribute to the author of The Flora of the Mount Hamilton Range. We award Helen Sharsmith grants to students or non students involved in research on California’s native flora.  To learn more go to the CNPS website for grant opportunities.

The Doc Burr Grant.  The Doc Burr Graduate Research Fund was established in 1983 to honor Horace K. “Doc” Burr, a founder and Fellow of the Society. Doc Burr grants are awarded to graduate students conducting research that promotes conservation of California’s flora and vegetation.  To learn more go to the CNPS website for grant opportunities.

The Hardman Native Plant Research Award.  This award is offered for promising academic and applied botanical research involving California’s native plants, especially rare plants. For this grant, we also welcome research leading to elimination of invasive exotic plants from the state’s flora.  To learn more go to the CNPS website for grant opportunities.

The G. Ledyard Stebbins Award.  CNPS established the Stebbins Award in 1986 to honor Dr. Stebbins for his many years of dedication to the Society and to students of genetics and evolutionary botany. Each year one Stebbins Award may be given to a graduate student for an outstanding proposal for research in evolutionary botany.  To learn more go to the CNPS website for grant opportunities.

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Nevada Native Plant Society

Margaret Williams Research Grants

The Nevada Native Plant Society (NNPS) Margaret Williams research grants program will annually award up to two grants of not over $1000. These grants are designed to facilitate basic botanical research and increase our understanding of Nevada’s native and naturalized flora. The research should cover some aspect of our flora from single species to whole communities or ecosystems. Research can include, but is not limited to, disciplines such as conservation, landscape analysis, ecology, biogeography, or taxonomy. Proposals are generally due in February; to learn more about the application process or to download an application please visit their website.

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Ecological Society of America

Desert Ecology-Forrest Shreve Award

One to two awards annually of $1000-2000 are available to support research in the hot deserts of North America: Sonora, Mojave, Chihuahua, and Vizcaino. Projects should be clearly ecological and should increase our understanding of the patterns and processes of deserts and/or desert organisms. Proposals are generally due in May; to learn more about the application process or to download an application please visit the website.

Ecological Society of America (ESA) has several other awards available, please visit their website to learn more.