Fellowship To-Do List

Oct. 28, 2022

Hello Graduate Students,

Whether you are applying for a GPSC travel grant or an NIH F32, getting started can be a challenge. The first step of most big projects is figuring out what to do. We thought we would try to help you begin by sharing an example of a to-do list for a fellowship. This is just a guide; some applications are simpler, and many applications are much more complex. But we hope this helps you get started. We also put the list on a google doc so that you can copy, revise, and use the list.      

We encourage you to utilize our Writing Efficiency Sessions and Graduate Writing Tutors as you work on your fellowship applications (or other writing projects).

Let us know if you have questions!





Read through the entire request for proposals (RFP) and double-check eligibility

If you’re wondering what an RFP is and how to read one, here’s some advice to help you out


Discuss application with professors


Make note of deadlines


Write down ideas for your application

New to applying to fellowships, or looking for a refresher? Look at our advice for getting started


Plan additional background research that might be necessary


Find and talk to people who have previously applied


Find examples of successful (and/or unsuccessful) applications


Register on and explore the system used for submission


Prepare to ask for letters of affiliation


Request letters of affiliation


Request transcripts


Update and revise CV according to the priorities of the opportunity

Unfamiliar with CVs/Resumes for fellowships? Check out our article on the topic


Make inquiry to the organization to which you are applying


Connect to other applicants (possibly exchange drafts)


Do research to connect your project to issues in your field


Do research to connect your project to issues of broad interest outside of your field


Make deadlines for drafts


Find/ask people to review drafts.

Here’s some advice for getting helpful feedback from readers


Prepare to ask for letters of recommendation

Check out our four steps to getting a great letter.


Ask for letters of recommendation


Fill out application forms


Write drafts


Get feedback on drafts


Send reminders about letters of recommendation


Revise drafts

If you find revision tough, here’s an article on the revision process to help guide you.


Get additional feedback on drafts


Revise again






Send thank you notes