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Summer Institute

The National Water Center Innovators Program Summer Institute is a seven-week experiential learning program that brings graduate students together with academic researchers, other professionals, and National Water Center staff. Since the first Summer Institute in 2015, over 150 students have participated in the program, which continues to play an important role in advancing the National Water Model.

About the Summer Institute

The Summer Institute is a partnership between CUAHSI and the National Weather Service that aims to engage the academic community in research to advance the mission of the National Water Center. Summer Institute participants work on projects related to water prediction and flood forecasting. Students work in small teams and are mentored by university faculty and other professionals. Student applications are accepted in the fall of each year.

Although there may be some overlap between a Summer Institute project and an individual student's academic research, Summer Institute projects generally are self-contained. The Summer Institute culminates in a capstone presentation and a final project report. Most project teams have published their work in a scientific journal after the completion of the program.

The 2022 Summer Institute will explore projects related to the following themes:

  • Coupling Inland and Coastal Hydraulics, supporting the goal of summit to sea water prediction
  • The NWC’s Next Generation Hydrologic Model Framework development and evaluation
  • Hydroinformatics, including machine learning, for water prediction and analysis

We recognize the ongoing uncertainty brought on by COVID. The Summer Institute will follow all the latest CDC and Alabama guidance in its program planning. If the Summer Institute cannot be held in person, we do not expect to convert to a virtual format.

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Program Timeline

  • Application Period: January 25, 2022 - February 23, 2022, 11:59 pm ET.
  • Fellows Notified of Acceptance: March 2022
  • Program Dates: June 13, 2022 - July 29, 2022



Those selected to participate in the Summer Institute will receive:

  • Reimbursement of travel expenses to and from Tuscaloosa.
  • A meal stipend while attending the program.
  • Accommodations for accepted fellows to reside in Tuscaloosa for the entirety of the program. (See above for more information)
  • A $2500 Honoraria.

We encourage involvement from the students' advisors, and as such, CUAHSI will support travel expenses for advisors to attend the SI Capstone event at the end of the Summer Institute.

How to Apply

Application Requirements:

  • Application Form
  • Statement of Interest
  • Transcript
  • Letter of Recommendation from Advisor
  • CV

Student applications will be evaluated based on student background, knowledge, training, and experience, as well as the degree to which students have the skills and the abilities to work in a fast-paced, collaborative environment. The ideal participant will be collaborative, curious, and a rapid learner.

Applications for the 2022 Summer Institute have closed. 

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