DHS Career Development Grant (CDG)

Lead Institution: University of Alaska Anchorage

Project Description:
The Career Development Grant (CDG) supports an important goal of the Arctic Domain Awareness Center: to foster the next generation of scientists and engineers devoted to the discovery, development and improvement of technologies and applications for Arctic Maritime Domain Awareness, Response, and Resilience. To that end, ADAC’s educational component includes an emerging Fellows Program for which the Career Development Grant provides the nucleus. CDG fellowships provide resources for education and mentorship (via the ADAC Fellows Program) for undergraduate and graduate students that enables their successful and timely completion of academic degrees useful in DHS Science & Technology areas of concentration. Student research conducted by CDG scholars can meaningfully advance projects within the ADAC portfolio to the benefit of DHS, USCG and other DHS maritime missions.

The original proposal targeted recruitment and selection of nine full-time fellows over four years of funding. With only two years of funding provided, our CDG program is on track with the original workplan, with five students in full-time fellowships currently, Fall semester of grant year 2. The objectives are to attract and motivate students in STEM disciplines by requiring a team-oriented educational experience. ADAC faculty, industry, partners, DHS collaborators, and students form a hierarchically structured, interdisciplinary research—learning community, with horizontal interdisciplinary faculty, industry partner, and DHS partners.

Student mentoring and engagement will occur at several levels: within the PI’s laboratory, at bi-monthly mentoring sessions, annual ADAC Student Research Symposium, Annual ADAC Partners meetings, and research needed in association with Incidents of National Significance (IoNS) Workshops. Assigned mentors, the ADAC Executive Director, and the Education Outreach & Workforce Development Director will conduct an annual performance review of each CDG Scholar. CDG Scholars will be expected to participate in summer research internships in support of ADAC projects, as well. Coached, mentored and professionally developed CDG Scholars enter DHS Enterprise workforce. Transition plans will continue past lifecycle of grant for tracking and job initiatives.