National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship (NDSEG): Application Deadlines, Eligibility, Requirements, and How to Apply

The National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship (NDSEG) is a prestigious fellowship program that provides support and funding to graduate students pursuing research in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.

Administered by the Department of Defense (DoD), this fellowship aims to attract and support highly talented individuals who demonstrate exceptional promise for conducting research in areas of importance to national defense.

In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the details of the NDSEG fellowship program, including its application deadlines, eligibility criteria, requirements, and how to apply.

Whether you’re a prospective applicant or simply interested in learning about this esteemed opportunity, read on to discover all the essential information you need to know.

Application Deadlines

The application deadline for the NDSEG fellowship program is typically in late October each year. However, it’s important to note that the specific date may vary depending on the discipline.

To ensure you have the most accurate and up-to-date information, we recommend visiting the official NDSEG website ( for the exact application deadline for the current year.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the NDSEG fellowship, applicants must meet the following criteria:

1. Citizenship: Only U.S. citizens or nationals are eligible to apply for the NDSEG fellowship.

2. Discipline: The fellowship is open to students pursuing research in a wide range of STEM disciplines, including but not limited to engineering, physics, mathematics, chemistry, biology, computer science, and materials science.

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3. Academic Status: Applicants must be enrolled in a doctoral program or planning to pursue a doctoral degree at an accredited U.S. institution. Candidates who have completed their undergraduate studies but have not yet started their doctoral program may also apply.

4. Military Obligation: It’s important to note that recipients of the NDSEG fellowship are required to commit to working in a DoD research lab or office for a period equal to the length of the fellowship, typically three years. This obligation is known as the “service requirement” and is an integral part of the program.


When preparing your NDSEG fellowship application, you will need to provide the following:

1. Personal Information: This includes your name, contact details, citizenship status, and academic institution.

2. Transcripts: Official transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions you have attended must be submitted.

3. Research Proposal: A detailed research proposal outlining your intended area of study and its relevance to national defense is required.

4. Personal Statement: A personal statement that highlights your academic achievements, research experience, career goals, and how the NDSEG fellowship will contribute to your professional development.

5. Recommendation Letters: Three letters of recommendation from individuals who can assess your potential as a researcher.

6. Test Scores: Depending on your field of study, you may need to provide relevant standardized test scores, such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).

How to Apply

To apply for the NDSEG fellowship, follow these steps:

1. Visit the official NDSEG website ( and navigate to the “Apply” section.
2. Create an account on the application portal.
3. Fill out the online application form, providing accurate and complete information.
4. Upload all the required documents, including transcripts, research proposal, personal statement, recommendation letters, and test scores.
5. Review your application to ensure everything is in order.
6. Submit your application before the specified deadline.
7. After submission, regularly check your email for any updates or additional requests from the NDSEG program.

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How competitive is the NDSEG fellowship?

The NDSEG fellowship is highly competitive, as it attracts exceptional candidates from various STEM disciplines.

The selection process is rigorous, and the program seeks to identify individuals who exhibit outstanding potential for research and contribute to national defense.

Can I apply for the NDSEG fellowship if I’m already receiving funding from another source?

Yes, you can still apply for the NDSEG fellowship even if you’re already receiving funding from another source. However, it’s essential to inform the NDSEG program about any existing or potential sources of funding during the application process.

Is there an age limit for applying to the NDSEG fellowship?

No, there is no specified age limit for applying to the NDSEG fellowship. As long as you meet the eligibility criteria and are pursuing a doctoral degree in a relevant STEM field, you are eligible to apply regardless of your age.

Can international students apply for the NDSEG fellowship?

No, the NDSEG fellowship is only open to U.S. citizens or nationals. International students who do not hold U.S. citizenship are not eligible to apply.

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