Frequently Asked Questions

What is the NSF Research Traineeship program, or NRT? 
The U.S. National Science Foundation's Research Traineeship Program is dedicated to effective training of diverse STEM graduate students in high priority interdisciplinary or convergence research areas, through a comprehensive traineeship model that is innovative, evidence-based and aligned with changing workforce and research needs. 

What do trainees research? 
Traineeships can focus on any high priority research, but specific areas can range in topics from artificial intelligence and quantum information science and engineering to the six research areas within NSF's 10 Big Ideas that serve the nation's future.  

What is convergence research?
Convergence research is driven by a specific and compelling problem where there is deep and intentional integration across disciplines. The goal of convergence research is to discover and develop new frameworks, paradigms, or disciplines that address critical questions or challenges.  

Who can create an NSF Research Traineeship? 
Accredited institutions of higher education, including community colleges, may apply to launch an NSF Research Traineeship at their institution. A faculty member must serve as the traineeship’s principal investigator. View the current solicitation.

How many traineeship awards have been funded, and at which institutions? 
NSF has funded over 100 traineeship awards at diverse research institutions across the country, in both rural and urban communities. View a map of past and current awards.

How can I get involved? 
Applications for the NSF Research Traineeship Program are accepted annually in September. Interested institutions and researchers can find more information for applying on the NSF website. Interested trainees and students can search current and recruiting traineeships. General inquiries regarding the program should be made to program staff at

To learn more, visit the NRT solicitation.