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INSPECT Fellowship Program

Indiana Science Policy: Educate, Collaborate, Transform (INSPECT) Fellowship

The Indiana Science Policy: Educate, Collaborate, Transform (INSPECT) Fellowship is a new fellowship program hosted by the Indiana Academy of Science (IAS). The INSPECT Fellowship’s purpose is to bring together the scientific community and state government while training scientists to be effective advisors for public policy. These fellowships will allow current graduate students in STEM fields to work side-by-side with elected officials to incorporate more scientific information into state and local policy decisions to promote the long term health, sustainability, and economic growth of Hoosiers across Indiana.

Learn about the IU INSPECT Fellows Program here.

IU Student and INSPECT 2023 Fellow, Rafael Alamilla presents his work. Rafael was recognized in this story by IU-Indianapolis.

For information about the INSPECT Program, contact Dr. Paul Doss.

Fellowship Details: The INSPECT Fellowship is a 10-week summer program (≈ June 1 – Mid-August) for current graduate students that places Fellows in an executive agency host office in the state of Indiana. The Fellowship will include an Orientation/Training at the beginning and a Fellowship reception at the conclusion of the program. INSPECT Fellows will be current Masters or Doctoral level graduate students from partner Universities across the state of Indiana, selected based on career interests, desire to link science and policy, and scientific integrity. Fellows will be matched to host offices based on mutual interest and placement availability. Potential host offices include but are not limited to the following topics: life sciences, agriculture & conservation, education & workforce, public health, technology & engineering, energy &
transportation, and economics & finance.

Eligibility: INSPECT Fellows must be current graduate students (Masters or Doctoral) in a STEM-related field or public policy oriented program in one of the INSPECT Partner Universities (currently: University of Notre Dame, Ball State University, Indiana University-Indianapolis, and Indiana University-Bloomington). Social scientists (i.e. students in the fields of anthropology, economy, psychology, etc.) are welcome and encouraged to apply. Students must be enrolled in a degree granting program and be able to work full-time with their hosting institution over the 10-week summer term. U.S. and non-U.S. citizens are eligible to apply, however, eligibility for international students may depend on Host Office placements and funding mechanisms from university partners.

Fellow Selection Process: The INSPECT Fellowship is awarded to qualified applicants who exhibit a keen interest in improving the interface between science and political decision-making, and who wish to learn the public policy process in  Indiana. The selection process for Fellows is managed by the Indiana Academy of Science and is determined by an Advisory Committee assembled and overseen by the INSPECT Fellowship Coordinator. Three finalists selected by each participating institution are forwarded to the IAS INSPECT Fellowship Committee. The IAS committee selects individual Fellows based on merit and aptitude for the science policy fellowship. Selected Fellow applications are forwarded to the preferred Host Offices for final confirmation, after which Fellows will be notified.

Application Requirements: Resume or CV (3 pgs max), Recommendation letters (2), Personal statement, Statement on science policy in Indiana, Diversity statement

Compensation: INSPECT fellows will receive a stipend determined by their institution, but not less than $8,500 for the approximately 10 week-long program. Fellows may also receive funds or support for professional development/training costs and travel expenses.

INSPECT Fellowship Coordinator, Dr. Paul Doss, and the 2023 INSPECT Fellows.

INSPECT 2024 Fellow Host Offices

Department of Transportation (INDOT):
Preferred fields of study: Engineer (interested in working with INDOT after fellowship), experience with data analytics, policy & human relations
Scope of work:
● Liaison work with legislators in tandem with the Legislative Director: Help work on policy proposals to send to governor
● Electric vehicle infrastructure implementation plan and Alternative fuels
● Differential truck speed limits, Road funding, Leg for workzone safety enforcement

Indiana Department of Natural Resources (IDNR):
Preferred fields of study: Biology, Data Science, Econ., Human Dimensions, Natural Resources, Political Science, Sociology
Scope of work:
• Work with the DFW Office of Science and Research to predict/assess the impact of proposed/implemented rule changes or legislation related to mgmt of fish or wildlife in Indiana.
• May include analysis and synthesis of biological, economic, and/or social data collected by the agency to address a policy question.

Indiana Department of Education (DoE):
Preferred fields of study: Some experience with education work (no specific degree), academic standards, assessment cycles
Scope of work:
● STEM Literacy Initiative – provide support for individual districts and schools
● High-level science support to schools, policy implementation > policy analysis
● Over the summer is good time to focus on some research efforts

Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH):
Preferred fields of study: Public Health definitely preferred
Scope of work:
● Public Health Laboratory @ 16th & MLK
● Public Health Protection Commission initiatives
○ Environmental public health
○ Lead and healthy homes
● Offices of Data Analytics & Cybersecurity (technical–less policy-related)


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