IonE Graduate Scholars

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The Institute on the Environment is launching a new interdisciplinary cohort program for graduate students, professional students, and postdoctoral researchers interested in exploring and advancing the role that the agricultural sector will play in addressing climate change. 

As a member, you will have a unique opportunity to connect with other students interested in interdisciplinary research within the agriculture and climate space and receive a $300 stipend in April upon program completion. You will also engage with related and ongoing work at IonE and have the chance to network with IonE faculty, community leaders, and peers.

This is a community of scholarship, and the nature of the programming will be flexible and reflect the interests and needs of cohort members.

Need to work on science communication? We’ve got that. 

Interested in policy? We can go there too. 

Want to workshop a research idea or find interdisciplinary faculty for your committee? We’ve got ideas!

Applications to join this cohort are open now through October 12th! Read the details below to learn how to apply.

What is the Commitment?

The IonE Graduate Scholars cohort will run from October 2020 to May 2021, and selected applicants should be prepared to spend around one or two hours per week on cohort related activities (discussions, readings, etc.) when classes are in session. The cohort will meet every two weeks on Mondays 6-7:30 pm.

Who Should Apply?

  • Are you a current registered University of Minnesota graduate or professional student with a demonstrated interest in agriculture and climate change?
  • Are you a student in environmental or sustainability science that wants to engage with social scientists and humanities scholars on environmental issues?
  • Are you a student in humanities/social science/business who wants to explore how agriculture and climate interact with the social, economic, and political systems in place?
  • Are you a student in the arts or communications that wants to promote science communication in the agriculture and climate space?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then this cohort is for you. We encourage applications from students from all colleges and UMN campuses who are eager to work collaboratively with faculty, staff, students, and community members and build a peer network.

Who is Leading the Cohort?

This year’s cohort will be led by Ph.D. students Nina Domingo and Ryan Gavin. 

Nina is a Ph.D. candidate in the Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering Department. Her research interests are at the intersection of food, the environment, and human health, with her dissertation focusing on the air-quality related health impacts of US agriculture. Outside research, she is involved with several grassroots organizations that seek to advance social and environmental justice in the Twin Cities.

Ryan is a Ph.D. student in the School of Public Health. He’s interested in better understanding how ecosystems and humans interact. Human health depends on healthy ecosystems, and he wants to help quantify these relationships. He’s especially interested how land use change interacts with extreme weather and climate in rural and farming populations. Prior to joining the school of public health, Ryan studied agronomy and plant science in CFANS. He has a dog that google AI thinks is a cat.

How Do You Apply?

Please submit a resume and personal statement (up to one page) sharing your research or work related to climate solutions in the agricultural sector, your academic and personal background, and why you are interested in interdisciplinary work as PDF attachments by 10 pm October 12 to

Please note in your email if you will be available to attend bi-monthly meetings on Mondays 6-7:30 pm, starting October 26 from 6-7:30pm

Preference will be given to applicants that are available to attend the bi-monthly meetings and whose academic and/or personal backgrounds help make this cohort truly diverse and interdisciplinary. We will select up to 16 participants for this year.