These comments are meant to help guide prospective and current NSF Fellows and their advisers at Vanderbilt, but are not exhaustive. Complete information regarding the administration of the program is available in the NSF GRFP website.
Students are invited to attend a workshop to learn more about applying for NSF fellowships on Tuesday, September 19, at 5:00 PM, in Jacobs Believed in Me Auditorium in Featheringhill Hall. This workshop is open to first- and second-year graduate students and VU Seniors who are in Biological, Natural, and Social Sciences, and Engineering. Read the full details of the workshop announcement here. Eligible students should register for this event no later than noon on September 19th.
Research Proposal and Personal Statement essay tips covered at the workshop are available here.
The NSF GRFP provides for three years of stipend support over a maximum five-year period: Up to three Tenure years of financial support (stipend plus COE allowance) and two reserve years.
Each Fellowship year is 12 months and is defined by NSF as beginning either Summer/June 1 or Fall/September 1. Tenure is computed from that date, independent of Vanderbilt’s academic year (which begins August 15), and Fellowship Tenure Status is not defined by the date on which a stipend payment is issued.
A GRFP fellowship cannot be concurrently accepted or combined with another Federal Fellowship,  regardless of the Fellow’s status, but may be combined with other types of funding.
Regardless of Tenure Status, all continuing Fellows must submit two reports by May 1 each year via FastLane: The Annual Activities report with the signed Academic/Research Advisor Confirmation Form and the Fellowship Year Tenure Declaration. Additional details are available in the NSF Administrative Guide.
Fellows are not considered salaried employees of either NSF or Vanderbilt.
On an annual basis (by January 31 of each year), HR Processing will send stipend recipients a letter regarding taxability and what forms (if any) to expect from Vanderbilt University. 
The stipend is awarded to the Fellow but managed administratively by Vanderbilt, through the Graduate School.
Fellows are not permitted to receive more than 12 months of GRFP stipend support during a single Fellowship Year.
No Fellow is eligible to receive more than 36 months cumulative GRFP stipend support.
While on Tenure, Fellows are exempt from paying required tuition and fees normally charged to graduate students of similar academic standing.
The Fellowship provides a fixed COE allowance to Vanderbilt, not to the Fellow. The use of the COE allowance is at Vanderbilt’s discretion.
Vanderbilt uses the COE to pay a Fellow’s health insurance (unless waived by the Fellow), required activity and recreation fees  , and a portion of tuition charges for the years the Fellow is on Tenure.
Should a Fellow reach 72 hours and still be on Tenure, the COE is used to pay health insurance (unless waived by the fellow), required fees, and the nominal tuition (currently $200) for a student to remain in good standing. The Fellow may request the use of COE funds for approved professional development expenses, while the Fellow is still on Tenure, up to the limit of what is available after those charges have been paid.
Applications Must Be Submitted by 5:00 pm Central Standard Time
October 23, 2017 (Monday)
October 24, 2017 (Tuesday)
October 26, 2017 (Thursday)
October 27, 2017 (Friday)
Effective as of the 2017 competition (Fall 2016 deadlines), graduate students are limited to only one application to the GRFP, submitted either in the first year or in the second year of graduate school. An exception is provided for first-year graduate students who applied to the 2016 GRFP completion in Fall 2015; these individuals may apply a second time in Fall 2016 if they are otherwise eligible.
 Federal Fellowships are defined by NSF in this instance as “awards that are made to individuals from the US Government (e.g., Department of Defense, Department of Energy, Environmental Protection Agency, National Institutes of Health, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Department of Agriculture, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration)” – Administrative Guide, pg. 27.
 Please note: Vanderbilt University does not provide tax guidance or assistance; this information is provided as a service and reminds all recipients to seek the counsel of a qualified tax advisor to determine their individual circumstances.