In 2011, the University of Washington was awarded an Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) grant from the National Science Foundation to establish an interdisciplinary Ph.D. Program on Ocean Change. The National Science Foundation established the IGERT program to enrich the Ph.D. educational experience of scientists and engineers through interdisciplinary training, research, and mentorship. Building on a foundation of deep disciplinary knowledge, the program emphasizes collaborative research that spans traditional disciplines, advances diversity, and serves society. More information about the national program can be found at NSF’s IGERT site and IGERT.org.
The iPOC Program of Studies emphasizes the cross-disciplinary and integrative aspects of the IGERT and the value added to disciplinary curricula. The objective of the Program of Studies is to produce students who excel in disciplinary knowledge, are able to integrate across the natural and social sciences, and are clear and effective communicators. The iPOC Program of Studies relies upon the disciplinary (home) departments to provide the deep disciplinary knowledge that is the cornerstone of every trainee’s professional preparation; consequently trainees must meet the course requirements of their disciplinary departments. To those requirements we add others to expand the breadth of academic inquiry, build interdisciplinary skill sets, and improve communication skills across a range of audiences. iPOC fellows complete core courses in human dimensions, integrated assessment, and policy processes, specialized training in science communication, seminar classes, and a summer retreat held at the Friday Harbor Laboratories. A final requirement is an interdisciplinary research project expected to result in a published work.
Graduate students may participate as trainees with funding, or as affiliates. Applications for iPOC traineeships are solicited from potential and current graduate students annually in the fall, with awards offered in late winter. Details and application information can be found under IGERT Traineeships. Trainees have the opportunity to apply for mini-research and international travel grants.
A full list of students, faculty, and partners can be found under Participants.
Terrie Klinger is the PI and director of the IGERT Program on Ocean Change (iPOC).
Tiffany Dion is assisting the PI on implementation of the IGERT. She is also the Graduate Program Advisor for the School of Marine and Environmental Affairs.