How to Win NSF Research Fellowships

Help students succeed and support faculty research

Lots of folks have advice on how to win these prestigious fellowships -- most of them talk about the difference between winning and losing.  We looked at hundreds of applications and reviews to suss out the difference between winning and honorable mention. It's a very fine line--join us to learn what makes the difference.

“Objective” writing is fine for articles and reports but doesn’t win fellowships. Students need to combine facts, structure, and emotion to convince reviewers to fund them.

One university QUADRUPLED their students' success rate; another won as many awards in two years as they had in the previous five years combined.

Register to learn how they did it. We'll describe the winning strategy, explain the approach, and share testimonials.

Presented by


Alan Paul

Alan worked in research and proposal development at the University of California for 15 years before retiring. He developed this approach at UC Riverside in 2012 and expanded and honed it in partnership with two university writing centers. Alan has coached hundreds of GRFP applicants and served as a reviewer for the program.


Patrick Ryan

Patrick teaches philosophy at Cal State Fullerton. He's won campus-wide awards as the best student mentor and best lecturer.  He started working with Alan as a consultant in UC Riverside's Graduate Writing Center, and developed the online curriculum.