Friday Harbor Laboratories

Fellowships and Scholarships for Students and Student Researchers

For Undergraduate or Graduate Students Enrolling in Courses or Conducting Research

FHL scholarship and fellowship funding derives from generous donations from alumni and friends of the Laboratories. FHL financial aid is awarded on the basis of both financial need and academic merit, and admission decisions are not influenced by financial aid requirements. Support is available to students attending either undergraduate or graduate-level courses in spring, summer or autumn at Friday Harbor Labs.

Because FHL gives course scholarship funds to as many students as possible, it cannot provide full financial aid for any. The expectation is that all students will contribute to required expenses of taking an FHL course; most use a variety of sources, e.g. personal, departmental, and other.

SUMMER COURSES: To help students realistically plan their course finances, FHL financial aid to students generally ranges from $1000 - $3000 with a median of $1900 in recent years.

SPRING and AUTUMN QUARTER, COURSES and RESEARCH APPRENTICESHIPS: Financial aid for students attending courses or research apprenticeships in spring or autumn is very limited; awards are only awarded in exceptional cases, based on both financial need and academic merit. In 2014 and 2015, awards in spring and autumn ranged from $400 to $2000 with only one to five students per quarter awarded FHL financial aid.

Possible sources (besides FHL funds) for student scholarships to conduct research or attend courses at FHL:

1. Scholarships Specifically for Taking Courses:

Libbie H. Hyman Memorial Scholarship: This scholarship, in memory of Libbie H. Hyman, one of America’s foremost invertebrate zoologists, “provides assistance to students to take courses or to pursue research on invertebrates at a marine, freshwater, or terrestrial field station.” The application deadline is typically in mid-February.
Click here to learn more.

Phycological Society of America Fellowships: for taking courses on algae at a field station.

UW Biology - Friday Harbor Labs Award: $1500 for UW Biology undergraduates taking courses or doing research at Friday Harbor Labs in spring or summer. Apply in Winter between Jan. 4-March 5 for award to be used within one year. Application information and a list of other possible scholarships are listed on the following UW Biology page:

2. Research Grants and Fellowships:

American Academy of Underwater Science: various funds for research using SCUBA.

AMS Student Research Fellowships: The American Microscopical Society Student Research Fellowship funds are designated for summer support of research projects involving microscopy. Two fellowships of $700 each are available. The funds may be used for summer support of any research project involving microscopy. Any undergraduate or graduate student member of AMS is eligible to apply, with the exception of past fellowship recipients. Applications from undergraduates and those from graduates are assessed independently. Awards are made up to a maximum of $700. Deadline for 2010: March 22, noon.

The International Women's Fishing Association has scholarships for marine science graduate students. March 1 deadline.

International Phycological Society: Paul Silva grants for research on algae.

Lerner-Gray Grants: seed money for research in marine zoology (only). Application deadline March 15.

The Lewis and Clark Fund for Exploration and Field Research (for doctoral students, for exploratory field studies for the collection of specimens and data).

Nancy Foster Scholarship Program: for graduate research in marine science, especially for women and minorities.

National Shellfisheries Association: various grants for research on shellfish (molluscan or crustacean).

NOAA Graduate Research Fellowship (available locally through Padilla Bay, but at other NERRs as well). These have a stipulation that 'some' of the work be done in an NERR (eg as one of many field sites) - beyond that, they are ok with the student spending the funds on anything related to the study. Year-long fellowships, applications due Nov. 1 each year.

Pacific Northwest Shell Club: for malacological research.

PADI Foundation: for research using SCUBA.

SICB Fellowships for Research or Travel (several options exist).

Sigma Xi offers small research grants, generally for travel. These may require sponsorship of a member; contact FHL if you need help with this part.

Phycological Society of America Fellowships (for research on algae).

3. FHL Graduate Research Fellowships to conduct research at FHL

Fellowship support is available for qualified applicants to conduct independent marine science research at UW-Friday Harbor Laboratories. Funding for graduate student support derives from generous donations by alumni, scientists and friends of Friday Harbor Laboratories. Note: Students wishing to enroll in a course should follow the financial aid procedures outlined in our student application process.

The purposes of the following funding sources are to enable graduate students to spend productive research time at FHL and benefit from the collaborative atmosphere. To accomplish this goal, we expect awardees to use all funds while in residence at FHL. Unused amounts will go back into the Fellowship Funds to be used for deserving students in future years. Funds may be spent on the following types of uses:

For each of the following fellowships, applications are welcome at any time. However, we strongly encourage applicants to apply before February 1 of each year, and awards are generally made in March. Students do not need to select from the fellowships. Instead, a committee will convene and assign the fellowship award(s) for each student.

To apply for any of these fellowships please email the five application elements listed below to Dr. Megan Dethier by February 1.
It is not necessary to specify any particular fellowship because the FHL Fellowships Committee will make the decisions. FHL fellowship applications should be addressed to the FHL Fellowship Selection Committee and emailed to

Items 1, 2 and 3 should be combined into one PDF document, submitted as an attachment to email:

  1. 1. A one-page statement of interest outlining your research objectives
  2. 2. Your CV which includes all previous financial support
  3. 3. A statement of financial need including details of all other support and all anticipated costs for this project and time period
  4. 4. One letter of recommendation sent directly from the writer, and
  5. 5. FHL's Application for Research Facilities.

Questions may be directed to Dr. Megan Dethier at 206-543-8096.

Please note: graduate students will rarely be funded for more than 3 years of FHL Fellowship funding so that we may maximize the numbers of students who can do research here; we expect that after 3 years students should be able to seek funding from other sources.