Graduate Student Opportunities
The National Science Foundation Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) program provides Ph.D. students at the University of South Carolina with the unique training and skill sets to advance the science and engineering of nanomaterials for sustainable energy.
IGERT fellowships are available for motivated students from engineering, chemistry, physics, materials science, and related fields. Students with a B.S. and/or M.S. degree in these fields are encouraged to apply.
Students in the program are co-advised by faculty from two different departments, working on projects within the following three research thrusts:
- CO2 conversion to liquid fuels, using electrochemical and heterogeneous catalytic approaches;
- catalytic conversion of biomass to liquid fuels and fuel additives;
- novel materials and devices for photovoltaic conversion of solar energy to electricity.
Chemical Engineering Graduate Student Opportunities
Ranked in the Top 50 by the U.S. News and World Report, the USC Department of Chemical Engineering is leading research in the following areas:
- materials and separation,
- biomedical engineering,
- electrochemical engineering,
- catalyst design and evaluation, and
- computational modeling and molecular engineering.
Chemistry and Biochemistry Graduate Student Opportunities
USC's chemistry and biochemistry department is ranked in the top 25 by the National Research Council in several areas including faculty research funding and publications. Read more about this department and its research.
Graduate students in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry can apply for Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need (GAANN) fellowships. This fellowship is designed to increase the number of Ph.D.'s in Chemistry with the goal of developing excellent Ph.D. scientists from talented students from underrepresented groups. The program offers special requirements for developing teaching, research and presentation skills as well as access to additional mentoring. Eligibility is based on both academic performance and financial need, which is determined through the FAFSA (fafsa.ed.gov). Students from underrepresented minorities (African American, Hispanic, Native American and Pacific Islanders) and women are encouraged to apply.
As part of the South Carolina Alliance for Minority Participation (SCAMP) initiative (http://www.sc.edu/our/SCAMP.shtml) and the South East Alliance for Graduate Education and the Professoriate (SEAGEP), USC science and engineering departments are collaborating with science faculty and students from minority serving institutions in South Carolina (South Carolina State University, Claflin University, Voorhees College, Benedict College, USC-Salkehatchie and Midlands Technical College) as well as in Florida, Georgia and the Virgin Islands. SEAGEP in particular is a long-term, comprehensive professional development initiative to produce underrepresented minority faculty in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) disciplines, and it reflects a commitment by USC's higher administration to the diversification of the graduate student body. Faculty in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry (Drs. Rasolov and Garashchuk) have been closely involved in NSF funded bridge projects SC STEPs to STEM and SC Graduate STEPs to STEM intended to attract, enroll and mentor transfer science and mathematics students from two-year colleges to successfully pursue a BS and subsequently enroll in a graduate program at USC.
Project SEED (http://sc.edu/projectseed/index.htm) targets high school students from economically disadvantaged families, giving them the opportunity to work alongside researchers in the lab over the summer. The program has brought students to the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry each year since 2010. Each student is paired with a faculty member and graduate student. Selected students will work 8-10 weeks in the summer, typically in June- August, and will receive a stipend for their work.