How Postdoctorates Apply to NOAA Climate and Global Change (C&GC) Fellowship Program

Applications have closed.

Check out the recording of our recent Q&A Session concerning applying to this program. A Q&A Session with your application questions was held on Wednesday, October 25th, 2023. 

There are 3 sections to this page:


Application Process


A program designed to train the next generation of climate research leaders

The UCAR Cooperative Programs for the Advancement of Earth System Science (CPAESS) help prepare the next generation of weather and climate leaders and workforce by managing fellowship, visitor and workshop programs that meet emerging needs of the atmospheric and related sciences communities.

This fellowship program is designed to provide an independent research opportunity to recently graduated PhDs who want to pursue interests that align with the NOAA Climate Program Office. The program focuses on observing, understanding, modeling, and predicting climate variability, change, and impacts on seasonal and longer time scales.

Experienced scientists at U.S. universities and research institutions host the appointed fellows, providing mentoring and a collaborative environment to carry out their research projects.

Advance contact with a potential host is required. For additional information, see How Hosting Institutions Apply in the main menu. Interested host scientists are required to submit a brief letter of intent to host the fellow, a curriculum vitae, a mentoring plan, and a list of current and pending research support. Hosts are expected to mentor the fellow and provide office, computing, laboratory, and field research needs for the fellow as appropriate.


Applicants must have a PhD degree in an area related to climate change research and have completed defense of the degree before starting the fellowship. Preference is given to new graduates who are seeking their first fellowship and who have held a PhD for no more than three years from the application deadline. Awardees must change institutions in the absence of compelling circumstances.

CPAESS strives to have diverse representation of universities and student backgrounds in the postdoctoral fellows cohort each year. We encourage applications from individuals who are members of a group that is historically under-represented in the atmospheric and related sciences, including students who are Black or African American, American Indian or Alaska Native, and Hispanic or Latino, female, LGBTQ, first generation college students, veterans, and people with disabilities.

U.S. citizenship is not a requirement of the NOAA Climate and Global Change Postdoctoral Fellowship Program. Open to proposed U.S. Universities or Research Institutions.

Please review Selection Criteria and Program Policies before applying.

Application Process

There are two steps to the application process:

  1. Prepare, collect, and organize documents in the order listed below and combine all documents into one (1) PDF.  
    Here are two resources for combining multiple documents into a single PDF:  
    How To Combine Files into One PDF
    How To Combine PDFs into One File.
  2. Submit your application through Workday, including attaching/uploading your Application Documents as a single PDF (see Step 1). You will be attaching this single compiled PDF in the section requesting your "Resume/Curriculum Vitae". You will also be completing a Questionnaire in Workday, in which you will be asked for contact information for your PhD Advisor, and three individuals - all of whom will act as your referees; later in the selection process our team may contact them to provide letters of recommendation.

Application PDF Format Instructions

Please prepare your application into one (1) PDF document, including all of the following documents, in the order listed below.

1. Personal Statement (2-page limit, 12 pt. type size) addressing the questions below:

  • Why are you specifically interested in a C&GC Postdoctoral Fellowship?
  • How did you demonstrate leadership and service in your community, and how would you bring and grow this experience during a C&GC Fellowship? 
  • How does your research plan enhance and complement NOAA’s strategic directions outlined in the NOAA Strategic Plan and other relevant strategies (e.g., NOAA Weather, Water Climate Strategy)? Future interactions with NOAA could also include using NOAA data, establishing new collaborations with a NOAA scientist, and giving a talk on your work and research outcomes at a NOAA Laboratory or Program Office. 
  • Tell us about your past activities related to inclusion, diversity, and equity in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) fields. What will you do to create an inclusive, diverse, and welcoming environment as a C&GC Fellow? 
  • Please also add a justification statement, if applicable, to explain any breaks in your career path.

2. Resume/Curriculum Vitae, including a list of publications.

3. Research Proposal (Must be titled, 5-page limit, 12 pt. Type size) including figures and appendices.

  • Bibliography/Citations/Literature References are NOT included in this 5-page limit.
  • Proposals must describe an actual, novel research project.
  • Proposals must be original to the applicant and cannot be sourced from a previously funded proposal to a different funding agency.
  • Proposals must address the broader impact of your research on the community at large.

4. Host Institution Materials

The following documents are needed from the Host(s) with whom you intend to work. Applicants are responsible for collecting these materials from their Host(s) and must submit these documents as part of the application packet. If you intend to have Co-Hosts, the Letter of Intent should be co-written by both Hosts. We require separate documents for the remaining material (Resumes, Mentoring Plans, and Current and Pending Research Support) from the Co-Hosts. 

*Note that you can work with a host institution not listed on the UCAR host website or Database of Potential Hosts site*.  Please see How Hosting Institutions Apply for more information.

  • Letter of Intent – in the case of specific laboratory needs, a letter should accompany the application from the specific institution willing to provide the resources.
  • Host(s) Curriculum Vitae/Resume
  • Host(s) proposed Mentoring Plan
  • Host(s) list of current and pending research support

The following institutional departments currently host first-year C&GC Fellows and are ineligible to serve as hosts this year:

  • Boston College - Earth and Environmental Sciences
  • Brown University - Department of Earth, Environmental & Planetary Sciences
  • Columbia University - Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory
  • Scripps Institution of Oceanography - all divisions - there are two C&GC Fellows at this institution
  • Stanford University - School of Sustainability
  • University of Arizona - Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences
  • University of Colorado, Boulder - Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences
  • University of Hawai’i, Manoa - Hawai’i Institute of Marine Biology (HIMB)
  • University of Minnesota - Civil, Environmental, and GeoEngineering

Online Application Instructions

You must apply online at the UCAR Career Opportunities Page. Here is a Step-by-Step guide for applying to the NOAA C&GC Postdoctoral Fellowship in Workday.

Step 1.

To begin the application process select the "Apply" button. When prompted, create a new account. If you have applied to a different position within UCAR, please sign in to your existing account. 

Step 2.

You will then be prompted to submit your current résumé.  At this point, you will upload your complete application document (i.e., all your application materials as outlined above, including your résumé) as a single PDF document.  Click “Select File” to find your file on your computer, and then select “Next”.

Quick Apply Screen Shot

Step 3.

Add any missing information and/or edit and verify any pre-populated information on the "My Information" and "My Experience" pages. Continue the application process as prompted.

NOTE: Pertaining to Letters of Recommendation

In the Questionnaire within your Workday application, you provided contact information for your PhD Advisor, and three individuals - all of whom will act as your referees. But, we will only be requesting letters of recommendation later in the selection process. If needed, our team will contact them to provide letters of recommendation. No letters of recommendation are required at the time of application submission.


Questions on the Workday application process may be addressed to HR Recruiting at

General questions regarding this fellowship program may be addressed to Kate Rodd at or Cindy Bruyère at

U.S. citizenship is not required to participate in this program, but the selected postdoctoral fellows must be hosted at a research institution within the U.S. Appointed scientists are employees of UCAR. The two-year fellowships include a fixed annual salary and benefits: health & dental insurance, paid time off, paid holidays, mandatory participation in TIAA retirement fund, and life insurance. A relocation allowance is provided as well as an allowance for travel to scientific conferences and other support costs.

The University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) is an equal opportunity/equal access/affirmative action employer that strives to develop and maintain a diverse workforce. UCAR is committed to providing equal opportunity for all employees and applicants for employment and does not discriminate on the basis of race, age, creed, color, religion, national origin or ancestry, sex, gender, disability, veteran status, genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, or pregnancy.

Whatever your intersection of identities, you are welcome at the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR). We are committed to inclusivity and promoting an equitable environment that values and respects the uniqueness of all members of our organization.