The Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) Graduate Fellowships (CSGrad4US) was created by the National Science Foundation with the goal of increasing the number of diverse, domestic graduate students pursuing research and innovation careers in the fields: computer science, computer engineering, or information science. CSGrad4US targets people who are bachelor’s degree holders and may be working in industry or other sectors and who may be interested in returning to academia to pursue research-based doctoral degrees. The program is being administered by the Computing Research Association (CRA). Participants in the program attend a series of professional development webinars and are assigned coaches to help them prepare their application materials for Ph.D. programs. The coaches also help with strategizing which schools to apply to. This year the program is funding 35 participants and is expected to continue for several more years. This first year of the program is working well, but as problems arise changes will be made to improve the program. I am proud to be one of eleven coaches in the program where I am working closely with three participants, two of whom have disabilities.
For former AccessComputing students who are now in the workforce, if you are thinking about going for a Ph.D. someday, please look into the CSGRAD4US program. For computing faculty, think about becoming a coach in the program to help individuals in the workforce successfully transition to Ph.D. programs.