The Department of Animal Sciences received a gift from the estate of Dr. Robert Nesheim to support graduate fellowships in nutrition. Dr. Nesheim received B.Sc., M.S., and Ph. D. (1951) degrees from the department. He had a long and distinguished career in industry as a scientist with Quaker Oats and played a major role in development of public policy and nutrition in the 1970s and 1980s. Dr. Nesheim also returned to the department and served as Department Head from 1964 to 1967. More on Dr. Nesheim's legacy.

Selection Considerations

Qualified applicants must have applied for admission to the department’s M.S. or Ph. D. programs or be starting a Ph. D. program of study in the department after having successfully completed a M.S. degree at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Identification of qualified applicants will be made by faculty, the Graduate Coordinator, and the Department Head. A Faculty Committee will evaluate all the nominations to the fellowship and make a recommendation to the Department Head.

Required application materials to be submitted electronically to Alicia Schneider are:

  1. Letter of nomination from a faculty member, specifying the nominee’s potential or role in publications and grants, the significance of past or planned future research, and contributions to teaching and service. Letters may be submitted separately from the other application materials.

  2. For nominees that have applied to the department’s graduate programs:
    • All the documents submitted towards the application to the Department’s Graduate Program will be considered.
    • Reprints of papers and abstracts authored by the nominee.
    For nominees beginning a Ph. D. program of studies in the Department after having successfully completed a M.S. degree at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign:
    • an up-to-date curriculum vitae for the nominee, including peer-reviewed publications, abstracts, other publications, awards, teaching and service experiences, and research grants
    • personal statement of academic background, research interests, and career goals
    • copies of course transcripts for all undergraduate and graduate courses, as well as UIUC grade point average and GRE scores
    • three letters of recommendation
    • reprints of papers and abstracts authored by the nominee.

Deadline for nomination and material submission: February 15 of each year. Additional deadlines will be communicated to the faculty in the event that fellowships become available.

Selection Criteria

  • Applicants must indicate a desire to conduct graduate work in the discipline of nutrition (broadly defined). Applicants must enroll in the graduate program in Animal Sciences (not a multidisciplinary program such as Nutritional Sciences, Neuroscience, etc.).
  • Preference will be given to domestic applicants.
  • Preference will be given to nominees whose previous degree was awarded by an institution other than the University of Illinois.
  • Preference will be given to nominees to the Ph. D. program but nominees to the M.S. program will be considered as well.
  • It is expected that nominees that are selected to receive a fellowship will have demonstrated high academic achievement (minimum GPA of 3.5 out of 4, minimum average GRE of 50%).
  • Consideration will be given to other indicators of probability of high achievement in graduate education such as past research accomplishments, leadership roles, etc.
  • The fellowship will be awarded based upon the materials submitted.

Selection of Awardee

The selection committee will consist of three members of the faculty of the Department of Animal Sciences appointed by the Department Head in consultation with the Departmental Faculty Advisory Committee. The committee will be appointed after the nominations have been received so that no nominator is appointed. The committee chair will be designated by the Head. The committee will select the awardee based on the previously described criteria for selection. If the committee determines that no suitable recipient has been nominated in a particular year, no award will be made.

Post-Award Considerations

The faculty advisor is expected to supplement the award to the current level of a 50% graduate research assistantship in the Department of Animal Sciences. The fellowship exempts the recipient from tuition and service fees.

Fellowships are renewed on a yearly basis (up to 2 years) conditional to the student’s good academic standing (GPA > 3.5) and progress in their research.

Questions can be directed to the Graduate Program Coordinator, Sandra Rodriguez Zas.