The fellowship has provided an up-close look at environmental governance and management, particularly how our federal, state, and local environmental regulations and incentive programs are implemented at the ground level… I have had the chance to take the lead on a project of interest to DCR, DEQ, and the Chesapeake Bay Program, as well as travel to training opportunities across the state.

– Bruce P.
2017 Commonwealth Fellow


2024 Commonwealth Coastal & Marine Policy Fellowship


It is required that recommendation letters be submitted with the student’s application. Recommendation letters should be written and given to the applicant to be submitted with the application package.

VASG recommends that letters not exceed two pages and do not include attachments. Please address letters to Dr. Troy Hartley, Director, Virginia Sea Grant.

Letter writers are encouraged to include tangible and specific examples, and consider the applicant’s:

• Academic and professional performance, including record and relevant experience;

• Personal motivation, perspective, and insight the applicant brings to their research and graduate program;

• Academic and professional potential for future success, including research and professional activities in integrated, trans-disciplinary settings;

• Responsibility, maturity, integrity, and personal accountability;

• Teamwork and leadership skills;

• Ability to identify and understand the big picture, and connections among perspectives; and

• Interest and competencies in the science-to-management or science-to-policy process, technical communication to non-experts, capabilities, and issues of relevance to the participating host offices.


May 1, 2024
Applications due to VASG by 5:00 p.m. EST

June 2024
Virtual interviews

July 2024
Notification of finalists

July 2024
Selected finalists interview with host offices

July 2024
Fellows notified of placements

August, 2024
VASG Fellowship Orientation

October 1, 2024
Fellowship begins

September 30, 2025
Fellowship ends

“My degree was pretty general, so I’ve been able to get that marine and environment-specific part of policy and implementation during this whole year. It’s helpful to learn broad policy stuff, but it’s also important to know how it works for your state to really be effective as an implementer of regulations.

– Lauren P.
2018 Commonwealth Fellow


VASG is committed to building inclusive research, extension, communication, and education programs that serve people from diverse backgrounds, circumstances, needs, perspectives, and ways of thinking. Diversity includes, but is not limited to, age, disability and/or health status, ethnicity, gender identity, geographic origin, nationality, race, religion, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, and/or veteran status. 

VASG does not tolerate any form of misconduct, discrimination or harassment, including sexual harassment, or sexual misconduct (e.g. sexual assault within its organization, at awardee organizations, field sites, meetings, or anywhere VASG-funded research, outreach and education are conducted).

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