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Clark Research Fellowship

Announcement of Opportunity

Applications Open: November 1, 2023
Submission Deadline: February 5, 2024
Award Announcements: March 29, 2024


2024 Summer Research: Up to $6000
2024-2025 Academic-Year Research: Up to $6000


The Dr. Laurel Salton Clark Memorial Graduate & Professional Research Fellowship Award was established in 2004 in honor of Dr. Laurel Clark, Columbia Space Shuttle astronaut and resident of Wisconsin. The award is granted annually to a promising Wisconsin student enrolled in a graduate or professional degree-granting program at a WSGC member institution, pursuing studies in the fields of environmental or life sciences, whose research has an aerospace component. Additionally, the WSGC seeks to support those students who personify the qualities of leadership, intellectual balance, and an ongoing commitment to improving the human condition that were the hallmarks of Dr. Clark’s life.

Proposal Evaluation


  • GPA/Transcripts
  • Letters of Recommendation


  • Proposal Clarity, Quality and Strength of Proposal
  • Significance/Value of Proposed Research
  • Independence of Proposed Research
  • Alignment with NASA Mission Directorate Goals
  • Articulation of Alignment with NASA Mission Directorate


  • Uniqueness of Subject Matter: Is the Field of Study Unusual Among the Applicants, or Closely Related to a Number of Others
  • Breadth/Significance/Relevance of Other Activities (e.g. outreach, service, hobbies), and/or unique circumstances/backgrounds

To Apply:

  • CREATE a NASA STEM GATEWAY account (applicants will be required to update profile information annually).
  • CREATE a WSGC account (applicants will be required to update profile information annually).
  • Sign into your WSGC account and submit an application/supporting documents to the CLARK FELLOWSHIP application (applicants may apply to multiple funding programs).
  • Provide two letter(s) of recommendation in PDF format through the online application process or confidentially via email to the WSGC Program Office with subject line LSC24_LOR.

Current & Past Award Recipients

Application Requirements:

Applicants who meet the following requirements can apply for this fellowship by registering and applying online at

  • U.S. citizen
  • Enrolled full-time in, admitted to, or applied to any graduate or professional program at a WSGC college or university
  • Minimum 3.0 GPA (Proposals that include a GPA of less than 3.0 will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis)
  • Research or engineering design in an environmental or life sciences field related to space or aerospace
  • Completed application online (see Supporting Materials Required with Application below)

Additionally, applicant must:

  • show a broad, balanced set of interests and pursuits outside the field of science.
  • demonstrate the qualities of leadership and an ongoing commitment to improving the human condition.

The Consortium invites applications for the Dr. Laurel Salton Clark Research Fellowship Award for the 2024-2025 academic year. For consideration, application forms must be complete and be accompanied by supporting documentation. The Consortium especially encourages applications from members of minority groups, women, persons with disabilities, and from those pursuing interdisciplinary aerospace studies in, but not limited to, engineering, the sciences, architecture, law, business, nursing, and medicine. Award winners will be chosen based on academic performance, space-related promise, alignment of the proposed work with the purpose of the Award in honoring the legacy of Dr. Salton Clark, and quality of the application.

Supporting Materials Required with Application:

  1. A two- to four-page proposal containing the following (see Tools & Tips for more information on how to create professional communications):
    1. A clear, concise statement of the independent space, aerospace, or space-related research. The application must indicate how, at least in a broad sense, the research aligns with the goals of a specific NASA Directorate or Center.
    2. Tasks, schedules and clearly stated expected results.
    3. Evidence of previous interest and experience in space-related studies.
    4. The significance/value of work for the space/aerospace field.
  2. Complete Academic Resume (see Tools & Tips for more information on how to create a resume)
  3. One-Page Budget Summary (for your independent research that should be for your sole benefit)
    1. Provide a brief explanation of any major expenditure items. Any domestic travel or other expenses should be related to your research. You may request living stipends, tuition offsets, supplies and expenses, and similar sorts of funding. WSGC will support travel to and from the Wisconsin Space conference only if expenses are included in the budget proposal. WSGC will not support international travel.
    2. Provide a brief synopsis of all federal fellowship(s) or traineeship(s) currently supporting this research. Note: Applicants may not be eligible for a WSGC award for research conducted during the same proposed period of performance.
  4. Provide a budget summary using the Fellowship Budget Proposal Template Form for the proposal that describes in detail the use of funds for the proposed project including labor (people, hours, rates and total), travel (location, transportation costs, hotel costs, meal costs), participant support costs, materials and supplies, and any other costs (with equivalent detail). Indirect charges are unallowable.
  5. Copies (unofficial are acceptable) of your undergraduate transcript(s)
  6. Copies (unofficial are acceptable) of your graduate or professional degree program transcript(s), including most recent

Required Letters of Recommendation: Letter(s) of recommendation may also be emailed to Subject: LSC24_LOR.

Two (2) Letters of Recommendation:

(a) One from your academic advisor or mentor stating his or her willingness to supervise your space, aerospace or space-related project and a description of his or her advisory role.
(b) One from another faculty member, employer, or aerospace professional familiar with your proposed area of work.

Award Acceptance Components:

As part of your award acceptance, you will be asked to attend the Annual Wisconsin Space Conference in August and submit the following documents to your Grant Management page on the WSGC Grant Application page:

  • Award Acceptance Letter
  • W9
  • One-Paragraph Biography
  • Professional Photo
  • Interim Report
  • 2-3 Project Photos (optional 1-minute video) Featuring Awardee w/Project
  • Final Report

    Complete the following tasks:

    • Office of Education Survey must be completed by December 15, 2024
    • Present Project at the Annual Wisconsin Space Conference in August
    • Submit a Proceeding Paper by Sept. 15 th to the Proceedings of the Wisconsin Space Journal
    • Submit a Student Story


Please direct questions about the Dr. Laurel Salton Clark Memorial Research Fellowship program to:

Lindsay McHenry, Ph.D.
Associate Director for Scholarships/Fellowships
Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium
Phone: 414-229-3951

Wisconsin Space Grant Consortium
Carthage College
2001 Alford Park Drive
Kenosha, WI 53140
Phone: (262) 551-6504

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