Application Review Process

Faculty Reviewers

All schools or colleges submitting nominations (maximum of 10 nominees per school/college) must also identify faculty reviewers. 

  • Schools/colleges nominating between 1-4 nominees will be asked to identify one faculty member with sustainability-related expertise to serve on the application review panel.
  • Schools/colleges nominating between 5-10 nominees will be asked to identify two members with sustainability-related expertise to serve on the application review panel.

A vetted pool of reviewers will help to ensure that we have a minimum of three faculty reviewing each nominee’s application package, in the event of sabbaticals, illness, etc.


  • Cannot be the same individual who currently represents the school or college on the Graham Sustainability Institute Executive Committee (EC).
  • Must recuse themselves from reviewing applications submitted by students with whom they work, wrote a recommendation letter, or in any other case where there may be a conflict of interest in reviewing student fellowship applications.
  • Who have not completed their reviews by the deadline will delay both the notification to students and the funding transfer process to the schools and colleges.

Fellows Selection

Applications are independently reviewed by a faculty committee composed of representatives from all nominating schools and colleges. Applications will be rated according to the following criteria:

  1. The degree to which work or interests are relevant to sustainability
  2. Interdisciplinary and collaborative nature of work and professional interests
  3. Leadership, productivity, and quality of the applicant's prior work and experiences
  4. Interdisciplinary balance and diverse perspectives in the cohort, including addressing diversity, equity, and inclusion 
  5. The extent to which participation in the Dow Fellows Program will be a transformative, as opposed to an incremental, learning experience

Dow Fellows Program leaders will use these independent reviews from nominating schools and colleges as the primary basis for selection. Per program goals, disciplinary balance will also be considered in determining the makeup of the final cohort, which includes a goal of 30% of the total awardees either currently enrolled in the College of Engineering or possessing an undergraduate degree in engineering.