Frequently Asked Questions
What's Fargo like?! Am I going to be bored? 

In short, no! Fargo is regularly recognized as an awesome little city! Both the New York Timesand Washington Post featured Fargo, highlighting a number of great Fargo activities. From amazing restaurants to local theater and art galleries to parks and running trails, there's never a dull moment. Come find out why we are North of Normal

Can I applyif I’m graduating this May? 


How many students are you accepting this year? 

We anticipate funding a cohort of 8-12 individuals this year.

Where will I live?  

NDSU has a vibrant Residence Life (housing, apartments, residence halls) in addition to more housing options (rentals) throughout the city.  You will be responsible for securing and investing in your housing during your time at CHANGE RaMP.  We have prepared this document with information about rental properties in Fargo. 

Some of our mentors and projects are located in other parts of the state and you would be based at their location if you chose one of these projects. Alternate locations include United Tribes Technical College (Bismarck), Sitting Bull College (Fort Yates), and Turtle Mountain Community College (Belcourt). 

Do I need previous research experience? 

No experience required!  Our program goal is to offer opportunities to those who have had little or no research experiences during college.  

I am an international student in the US on a student visa, can I apply?

Unfortunately, no, applicants must be U.S. citizens, U.S. nationals, or permanent residents of the United States.

What is the 12-month stipend? 

Stipend of $32,500 +$4,000 for insurance (mentees responsible for obtaining their own insurance from this total of $36,500)

How do my references submit their letters? When are they due?

Letters are not required for your application. Only the names and contact information of references are required for a complete application. 

When will I hear about the status of my application?

Applications are due Mid-January. We are likely to be ready to send requests for brief phone/zoom interviews by mid-February. 

Who will I be working with on a day-to-day basis?

This will vary depending on your project and mentor. Some fellows work in a lab with others (grad students, undergrads, post-docs), however, some will spend a great deal of time working alone. You will regularly interact with your mentor, but your mentor may not work with you daily.

Will I be employed through NDSU?

You will not be an employee of NDSU. The grant that provides funds for this program dictates that CHANGE RaMP Research Fellows must be paid as an independent, self-employed researcher. Also, some of our Research Fellows will not be located in Fargo and their pay will be processed through the appropriate institution linked to their project.

Will I be a student at NDSU?

No. Unfortunately, you cannot be a student if you are a CHANGE RaMP Research Fellow.

Is there funding to help me move?

There are limited funds to support Research Fellow travel whether that be to conferences or to move.

Where will I work?

You will work at a site appropriate to your project. Most of our project mentors are located in Fargo at NDSU’s main campus, but they are not all in the same department. In addition, some of our mentors and projects are located in other parts of the state and you would be based at their location if you chose one of these projects. Alternate locations include United Tribes Technical College (Bismarck), Sitting Bull College (Fort Yates), Turtle Mountain Community College (Belcourt), and USGS Northern Prairie Wildlife Center (Jamestown). We are happy to provide more details about these situations during the interview process.

How frequently will I be paid?

Your stipend is split into paychecks processed to go out on the 1st and 15th of each month. The exception to this involves the $4000 allocated for your medical insurance. This is paid in a lump sum and is included in your first paycheck.

How soon after I start will I get my first paycheck?

This depends on your start date. Project start dates are flexible and variable. NDSU processes pay based on the prior pay interval, so if you start on the 6th, your first paycheck can’t be submitted until after the 15th. Your pay would arrive on the 1st of the following month. We will work with you on start dates to get your first paycheck to you as soon as possible after your start date.

Do I have to pay out-of-pocket for my research supplies and equipment?

No. Each CHANGE RaMP Research Fellow is allocated $10,000 for the purchase of supplies and equipment related to their research. A portion of this may also be used to fund travel to conferences and, more limitedly, for moving expenses. All of these expenses must be made according to the institution hosting you (e.g. must follow NDSU rules if you are hosted at NDSU, United Tribes Technical College rules must be followed if hosted at United Tribes Technical College etc). Your research mentor will help you navigate how to make these purchases.

Have more questions?

Contact our Program Coordinator, Dr. Rebecca Reichenbach

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