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Mission statement

The NNSA Graduate Fellowship Program produces exceptional leaders through a proven platform that is based on guiding principles, tested criteria, a targeted outreach strategy, and a lifecycle management approach.

Program Management

In partnership with the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA), Pacific Northwest National Laboratory provides outstanding program management support of the NNSA Graduate Fellowship Program (NGFP) for a single purpose: to build and strengthen the nation’s leadership in nonproliferation and international security, in alignment with the NNSA’s mission.

Management of the NGFP

  • Is based on best practices
  • Builds on the most successful elements of other fellowship and internship programs nationwide
  • Is rigorous, documented, and evaluated for standardization and assessment
  • Integrates innovations, participant survey results, and lessons learned into each successive year’s activities for continuous improvement.

Program Management Approach

Lifecycle-based. Project lifecycle is a critical component to the management of internship programs, and the NGFP’s mature annual lifecycle is a cornerstone of the program’s management. 

Scalable. The NNSA’s mission is highly dynamic, so the program model and budget are structured to ebb and flow with the needs of the client.

Modular. By focusing the administration of the program into five core elements, each element can be optimized for its purpose, through specialization (for high efficacy) and replication (for high efficiency).

Program Elements (click on each element below for more information)

program management outreach selection and hiring orientation and training career development NGFP program management diagram

Program Management

  • Annual Report, delivered to a range of stakeholders, demonstrates the program’s impact
  • Standard Operations and Procedures Manual ensures continuity and replicable results
  • Lessons learned, reviewed and implemented for every cycle, guarantee continuous improvement


  • Recognized as the heart of the program; reaching out to the right candidates ultimately determines the program’s success
  • Targeted strategy builds lasting partnerships and maximizes results from key universities
  • Reaching out to technical candidates is critical and requires a different approach than policy candidates

Selection and Hiring

  • Strict annual schedule allows sufficient lead-time for pivotal security clearances
  • Secure online tool allows client set to review hundreds of applications while targeting preferred qualifications
  • Candidates pre-screened for security clearance eligibility

Orientation and Training

  • Secure online tool enables efficient on-boarding of new hires so they arrive fully prepared
  • Orientation leverages NNSA site resources, immersing Fellows in hands-on training with field experts

Career Development

  • Recurring annual events expose Fellows to various career paths while broadening awareness of NNSA and NGFP

NNSA Graduate Fellowship Program Contacts

About NGFP


Additional Resources