The Binational Climate Extension Fellowship — California Sea Grant Request for Applications

Application Deadline
Contact Name
Laura Engeman
Contact Email


The coastal region encompassing San Diego County through Baja California Norte is a connected landscape that supports the livelihoods, lifestyle, and culture of millions of people. The region is also increasingly vulnerable to weather extremes that can have significant consequences for its communities and ecosystems. To address these growing stressors, many communities and populations are looking to plan and support coastal resilience strategies that include adaptation, restoration, and transitional support for habitats and populations.  

At the foundation of designing coastal resilience strategies is the need for a wide array of coastal observations, future climate projections, and local and traditional knowledge about the site. This includes understanding the area’s history, exposure to natural hazards, regional oceanographic and ecosystem processes, past and current stewardship practices, and potential impacts amplified by climate change. While regional expertise and knowledge exists that can contribute to these efforts, it is often siloed in communities or academic institutions making it difficult to discover or disseminate. In the San Diego-Baja California Norte region, these challenges are amplified by language barriers, inequalities in resources and capacity, and historic injustices. 

In response, California Sea Grant and the Climate Science Alliance are supporting a 24-month Binational Climate Extension Fellowship to lead, support, and facilitate science and knowledge-sharing to serve the coastal resilience needs of the San Diego-Baja California Norte region. 

The position will be based at California Sea Grant, whose mission is to create knowledge, products and services that benefit the economy, the environment and the communities of California. The Fellow will be mentored primarily by a California Sea Grant Extension Specialist with additional mentorship and direction provided by the co-Directors and staff of the Climate Science Alliance.  

Project Objectives and Tasks

The Binational Climate Extension Fellowship has two primary objectives: 1) to lead the development of a binational coastal research roadmap for increasing access to coastal science resources in the region and fostering new partnerships to expand and leverage regional expertise and 2) to provide technical and logistical support for an Indigenous-led coastal resilience working group led by the Climate Science Alliance. 

The Fellow is expected to make tangible and quantifiable progress towards the following tasks:

  1. Identify and catalog scientists, data resources, and research that can inform coastal resilience efforts in the San Diego-Baja California Norte region. The Fellow will meet with scientists and knowledge holders in both the U.S. and Mexico (virtual and in person travel expected). California Sea Grant will assist with connections to research networks at Scripps Institution of Oceanography and various other institutions. The Fellow will also leverage the work of, and coordinate with, staff and members of the Climate Science Alliance Baja Workgroup.  
  2. Develop a regional research roadmap depicting fields of expertise and geographies that are currently being served and identifying priority areas of coastal science needs, including knowledge sharing or ongoing funding or capacity. With support from the mentors, the Fellow will lead and facilitate several focus groups or workshops to develop ideas around science priorities, data and knowledge sharing needs, and potential collaborations.  
  3. Provide information, speakers, and administrative support for the Climate Science Alliance’s Indigenous Coastal Stewardship initiative. The Fellow will organize briefings for the Indigenous work group to assist them with exploring existing and future opportunities to be involved in coastal resilience and adaptation planning and projects on their ancestral coastal homelands.  
  4. The Fellow will also help to support knowledge-sharing and leadership opportunities with coastal cities or resource management entities for elevating Indigenous roles and voices. This may include engagement in activities and conversations related to coastal access and resource use, as well as opportunities for participation and leadership in coastal resilience enhancement activities.

Accomplishment of these tasks and outreach on findings and final products will require the Fellow to interface with academic institutions and researchers, Tribal, local, state, and federal government, philanthropic and nonprofit partners on both sides of the border. Some tasks will be self-guided, others will be performed in close coordination with California Sea Grant and Climate Science Alliance staff. The Fellowship work is expected to be conducted with a hybrid set up of 1-3 days a week in the San Diego offices of California Sea Grant and/or Climate Science Alliance, and remote work the remainder of the time.  

Professional growth opportunities are a key component of Extension Fellowships at California Sea Grant. This position is expected to assist the Fellow with expanding their understanding of multiple science disciplines and traditional knowledge areas relevant to coastal resilience concepts and approaches. The Fellow will also learn about various science-based careers through informal interviews, Sea Grant colleague networking, and workshop settings. Other professional development opportunities will include training opportunities, principles for building trust and partnership with Indigenous communities, workshop planning and facilitation, project management, and science communication.


Applications may be submitted by a graduate student who has completed their degree (Masters, Ph.D., or J.D) in a cross-cutting social and natural science field such as physical oceanography, coastal geomorphology, coastal or marine ecology or biology, civil or coastal engineering, natural resource management, environmental science and/or conservation, human ecology, or coastal land use policy or law at any accredited institution of higher education. The Fellow must complete all degree requirements before starting the fellowship.

Applicants with proficiency in Spanish and familiarity with Baja coastal universities or environments will be given preference and are strongly encouraged to apply. 

Sea Grant is committed to increasing the diversity of the Sea Grant workforce and of the communities we serve. Sea Grant embraces individuals of all ages, races, ethnicities, national origins, gender identities, sexual orientations, disabilities, cultures, religions, citizenship types, marital statuses, job classifications, veteran status types, and income, and socioeconomic status types. Sea Grant is committed to building inclusive research, extension, communication and education programs that serve people with unique backgrounds, circumstances, needs, perspectives and ways of thinking.

Stipend and Expenses

The fellow will receive $114,600 in stipend for the 24-month assignment ($4,775/month). Additional funds will be available to cover fellowship related travel ($5,000). The fellow must provide proof of health insurance.

Length and Location of Assignment

The length of the assignment is 24 months (non-renewable) beginning on or shortly after January 1, 2023. The fellowship is expected to be a hybrid remote and San Diego, California based arrangement. The Fellow is also expected to be comfortable and able to travel to the Baja California Norte region. 


A complete application will include:

  • Resume/curriculum vitae (not to exceed two pages using 12-point font)*
  • A personal education and career goal statement that emphasizes the applicant's abilities and interest in coastal management and adaptation to climate change threats, and the integration of socio-cultural and traditional knowledge into resource restoration, management, and/or adaptation decision making processes (1,000 words or less)
  • Two to three professional references, including one from someone who is most familiar with the applicant’s academic career.

*Personal information (birth dates, addresses, student ID numbers, social security numbers, etc.) should be redacted from all application materials before it is submitted through eSeaGrant.

How to Submit an Application

The electronic files comprising your application must be submitted as PDFs using eSeaGrant, California Sea Grant’s online submission portal.

You will need to register for an account (click on the banner labeled “Register”) in eSeaGrant if you have not done so in the past year. You can change the randomly generated password once you log in successfully into the website. To apply for this fellowship, click on the eSeaGrant link for the Binational Climate Extension Fellowship, and select “Add Fellowship Application” to start the application process. 

Please make sure to include your last name in the file names for each section of the proposal (e.g., Smith_statement.pdf or Smith_cv.pdf). When naming the document please do not use apostrophes. Once submitted through the website, PDFs may not be edited. To change a PDF, it must be deleted and resubmitted.

For electronic files larger than 6 MB, contact to make other arrangements. Only Acrobat documents (pdf) are accepted.

For technical issues with submitting your application through eSeaGrant please contact‬.

Application Deadline: 5:00 PM PST Monday, December 5, 2022.

NOTE: the eSeaGrant proposal portal will automatically close at the date and time stated above, and late applications (even 1 minute late) cannot be accepted. It is your responsibility to get materials submitted before the deadline.


Selection of the finalists is made by staff of the California Sea Grant College Program and the Climate Science Alliance based upon review of written application materials and interviews (Zoom or phone) of a subset of applicants. 

Selection criteria used by California Sea Grant include: 

  • Diversity and appropriateness of academic and professional background and experience (30%)
  • Statement representation of communication skills, career goals, experience with and interest in collaborating with people from diverse backgrounds (30%)
  • Academic and professional ability, demonstrated by career stage, listed publications, and presentations (20%)
  • Additional qualifying experience (e.g., awards, spanish language proficiency, trainings, certifications, volunteer committees or work) (15%)
  • References (5%) 

Please note that California Sea Grant will not cover expenses incurred during interviews since traveling is not required to interview.


  • December 5, 2022 5PM: Fellowship applications due
  • December 6-12, 2022: Screening of fellowship applications
  • December 13–16, 2022: Interviews
  • December 21, 2022: Candidate notified
  • January 1, 2023: Fellowship begins


For general questions about the California Sea Grant Binational Climate Extension Fellowship, 

please contact: 

Laura Engeman

Coastal Resilience Extension Specialist



For eSeaGrant application question, please contact:

Nick Sadrpour

Program Coordinator