The first cohort of 100 Quad Fellows has been announced. Included in the inaugural class are 25 American graduate students studying science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines. All of the recipients, who were introduced earlier this month, receive a one-time $50,000 stipend to support their studies.
The Quad Fellowship is a unique support program for graduate students focused on building STEM expertise and fostering ties among the Fellows, 25 of whom are selected from each of four countries – Australia, India, Japan and the United States.
The initiative of the governments of those four counties was unveiled by the Quad partners on September 24, 2021. The multi-national fellowship is operated by Schmidt Futures in consultation with a non-governmental task force composed of academic, foreign policy, and private sector leaders from each Quad country. It receives financial support from several corporations, including Accenture, Blackstone, Boeing, Google, Mastercard, and Western Digital.
This program sponsors 100 exceptional American, Japanese, Australian, and Indian master’s and doctoral students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) to study in the United States. The Fellows form a network of STEM experts committed to innovation and collaboration in their own nations and among Quad countries.
U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan praised the Fellows, saying that each of them “have demonstrated their commitment to advancing innovation and collaboration among our four great democracies and an enthusiasm for building a better tomorrow for the Indo-Pacific and the world.”
The first cohort of Quad Fellows studied at 69 undergraduate institutions across the four Quad countries. They focused on 16 different disciplines, including astronomy, biology, engineering, computer science, mathematics, oceanography, and other fields. They will begin their studies in the United States in August 2023.
The Fellows were chosen via a rigorous selection process operated by Schmidt Futures. More than 3,200 completed applications were submitted. These applications were then evaluated by over 100 STEM professors from the Quad countries. Less than eight percent advanced to interviews conducted by experts in each discipline, and fewer than five percent went onto the final-round panel interviews, conducted by C-suite executives, tenured professors, non-profit Executive Directors, senior-level government officials, and other senior leaders from the Quad countries.
Among the Quad Fellows from the U.S., five studied at MIT, two study at Rice University, two each are at Arizona State University, the University of Washington, Yale University, and Harvard University. Other institutions that Fellows from the U.S. either attended or will attend include the University of Louisville, Rutgers University, the University of Georgia, the University of Michigan, Ohio State University, UCLA, University of California – Davis, Duke University, New College of Florida, Stanford University, Florida International University and the U.S. Air Force Academy.
Each Quad Fellow will receive:
- A one-time award of $50,000 for study in STEM graduate programs. Fellows also can apply separately for additional, needs-based funding up to $25,000 to support completion of their academic study.
- Access to virtual and in-person workshops on the intersection of STEM and society, ethics and innovation, and emerging technologies. Fellows also participate in small-group research and support networks.
- Mentoring by leading scientists, technologists, and national leaders from Quad countries.
- Connections within a network of STEM innovators through international experiences, including a week-long residency in Australia, Japan, or India, a weekend summit in Washington, D.C., and other in-country immersion offerings.
“It is my great privilege to join the four Quad leaders in welcoming our inaugural cohort of Quad Fellows,” said Tony Woods, Executive Director of the Quad Fellowship. “The work that our Fellows do during and after their time as Quad Fellows will lead to bold, new inventions and generational breakthroughs in STEM that will enrich the globe for generations to come. At the same time, our scholars will help to build deeper ties between our four nations and renew the power and possibility of collaborative democracy.”