About PDRF

PDRF Expectations

  • Make satisfactory progress toward the degree
  • Support graduate and undergraduate research by engaging in research-related department, college and university events
  • Submit detailed research progress report to the faculty mentor each year
  • Complete the graduate student grant-writing workshop within the first two years of study
  • Apply for external support (e.g., NSF, NH grants), if available, within the first few years of study
  • Complete USU’s Research Scholars Certification Program
  • Obtain at least one semester of teaching experience
  • Serve as an ambassador for the program

Eligibility Requirements

  • Meet all minimum School of Graduate Studies standards for acceptance to USU
  • Cumulative 3.5 GPA or higher
  • Additional department-specific requirements


Tuition Award

Tuition coverage for 4 years

PDRF award covers 100% of main tuition costs for all students, including nonresident and resident tuition for international and domestic students meeting USU’s residency requirements.

Annual Scholarship

$10,000 per year

PDRFs receive a four-year award including an annual scholarship of $10,000 on top of the assistantship provided by their departments, with a guaranteed minimum support of $20,000 per year in total.

Central Support

Access to USU administration

PDRFs receive one-on-one access to the Vice President for Research, fellowship staff, and have additional access to Office of Research and USU central administration throughout their program.

Special Guests

Meet exceptional researchers

PDRFs often participate in exclusive events with renowned researchers. Past guests have included USU’s president and provost, NPR’s Joe Palca, and NSF’s Doug Levy. 


Connect with other students

The Office of Research hosts events to encourage its interdisciplinary fellows to network, developing a cohort of social, professional and emotional support.

PDRF Workshops

Coffee trainings for Fellows

The PDRF program hosts informal cafe workshops to build skills in research, teaching, mentoring, community engagement, and professional development.

Presentation Experience

Disseminate your research

PDRFs are encouraged to present at the annual Student Research Symposium, apply for professional conferences in their disciplines, and have access to travel funding.


Engage in professional development

The Graduate Training Series (GrTS) provides  training to prepare graduates for a competitive job market through a range of research and career development topics.

USU Workshops

Learn from the experts

PDRFs have a reserved spot in USU’s intensive grant-writing workshop and participate in USU’s Research Scholars Certification, an introduction to responsible research conduct.