Consortium Policies

Consortium Courses

Students are required to take two energy/environmental courses for the Consortium—one policy course, and one science course. Students can propose alternatives to the listed course options, but in keeping with the intent of the Consortium to increase students' breadth of understanding about energy and environmental issues, students are expected to choose courses that they would not normally take for their degree.
Students can take the courses in any order they choose, and they do not have to be taken in successive semesters, but it is anticipated that students will complete their coursework within 2-4 semesters of entering the program. Students may take more than one of the required courses in the same semester, but this is typically discouraged for students who are nearing the completion of their degree when demands on their time tend to be particularly high.
Students should submit a plan for completing their coursework as indicated in the application materials, and are strongly encouraged to consult with their advisor when considering their proposed schedule. In all cases, students are expected to successfully complete each of the courses in order to meet the program requirements and maintain eligibility for any HUCE fellowship support. 

Reading/Discussion Seminar

A weekly seminar is an integral and required part of the Consortium experience, and students are expected to attend all of the seminars during their first two semesters in the program, regardless of whether they are taking any of the required Consortium courses during those semesters.

More than two unexcused absences in either of these semesters may jeopardize future HUCE fellowship support for doctoral students, and any absences need to be made up during a later semester. Upon completion of the initial seminar requirements, Consortium students are encouraged and welcome to continue attending the reading seminars during their entire time in the program, and beyond.

Seminars are held every week during the Fall and Spring semesters from 12:00pm-1:30pm at the Center for the Environment. Each seminar is led by a different Harvard faculty member whose research is related to topics in the areas of energy and the environment. The format typically includes a presentation and group discussion based on several readings, and lunch is provided.

Fellowship Support

The Harvard University Center for the Environment is pleased to offer the opportunity for doctoral students to apply for graduate fellowship support when entering the program. These funds are intended to relieve the obligations of faculty advisors or home departments to support students as they divide their time between their research and the Consortium requirements.  
If awarded, funds will be administered through the student's home department, and the level of support will be determined in accordance with departmental policies and current pay rates. As a result, students will not likely see any net increase in their monthly stipend payments. Fellowship support is only awarded during the semesters in which students are actively enrolled in one or more of the required Consortium courses. Once awarded, the continuation of support is contingent upon a student's ability to progressively meet the requirements of the program, which is assessed at regular intervals. Students initially deemed eligible for fellowship support may have that eligibility reevaluated if they have not completed the program requirements within two years of starting the program.
As a condition of receiving fellowship support, students must be willing and able to serve as a teaching fellow during their time in the Consortium for an undergraduate course related to energy, if and when the need arises. Students will not be expected to serve as a teaching fellow more than once, and they will be compensated for their time spent teaching by the department sponsoring the particular course. Students who can serve as a teaching fellow will be given admission priority, and they should indicate in their application which semesters they are available to teach.

Conference Funds

Doctoral students are eligible to receive up to $1,000 for expenses related to attending conferences, workshops, or other appropriate professional activities during their time in the program.  

Students intending to use conference funds need to notify the Consortium coordinator prior to their anticipated travel, indicating how the proposed activity relates to their participation in the Consortium. All requests for funds must be submitted while a student is enrolled in the Consortium.

To be reimbursed for expenses, students should plan to submit original receipts along with the following forms to Jim Clem at


and if you are not a US citizen, please also submit a W-9 form (Request for Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification)