Roots for Resilience

How to Participate

The Fall 2021 Roots to Resilience Cohort is full.

Building on the success of our inaugural program this spring, we will once again use department head nominations (you did a terrific job!) to select the fall cohort. The spring cohort filled in about 5 days, so don't delay if you want to participate!

Please note the following:

  • This is a competitive program targeting departments that support environment/resilience-focused research.  Departments must be invited to nominate a student for participation by the Arizona Institute for Resilience.  
  • 1 position per department, as designated/selected by the department head. Students based in one department but with their advisor in another may need to be considered against the advisor’s department’s candidate.
  • Our target students are enthusiastic, collaborative-minded PhD candidates who have completed qualifying exams, but others (including exceptional master's) will be considered. For best results (for your department), we'd like students who will be around past the end of the program so they can continue to be ambassadors between your department and CyVerse/Data Science Institute.
  • Each student will be awarded a $7,000 scholarship, with half disbursed at the start of the Fall 2021 semester and half at the end of the semester pending successful completion of the program, including presenting to your department. Students and their advisors will be asked to sign an acceptance contract acknowledging the time and work commitments expected of participants.

Questions regarding participation should be sent to Betsy Woodhouse (woohou1 [at]


Program Details

Much as roots anchor plants and ecosystems, data are the roots of science and discovery.  The Roots for Resilience Research Assistantships in Data Science is co-led by the Arizona Institutes for Resilience (AIR), CyVerse, and the University of Arizona Data Science Institute (DSI).  The program trains selected graduate students in the use of open science and computational infrastructure, such as CyVerse, to apply data science tools to their dissertation’s research and discovery, as well as increase their department’s data science capacity. Fellows meetings focus on discussions, training, exploration, and experimentation with tools supporting personal research activities within their group and across their departments.  Students will meet regularly with members of CyVerse, the Data Science Institute, and the Arizona Institutes for Resilience.  Conclusion of the assistantship will include a presentation to the student’s department on applications and uses of CyVerse, and other open science and data science tools that enhance disciplinary and interdisciplinary research.

As a partner in this program, AIR is interested in fostering new interdisciplinary research partnerships, leading to new proposals for external funding, that take advantage of UA’s strengths in data science and resilience-based research to address challenges facing human and natural communities. By training graduate students as department-level ambassadors of information exchange, this program aims to better educate AIR departments on the capabilities and possibilities offered by CyVerse and the Data Science Institute, and in turn help broker new research areas in which data science tools play a strong role.

Program Goals

  • Develop data science capabilities across AIR’s participating departments and research groups Accelerate research projects of participating fellows and their home department research groups
  • Build professional networks for addressing large-scale challenges and research questions of interest to AIR faculty
  • Develop new interdisciplinary collaborations across AIR, DSI, CyVerse, and academic units for writing new proposals
  • Develop a cohort among participants (and Data Science Ambassadors) to support each other in their own research and efforts to engage their departments


The Roots for Resilience Research Assistantship program is funded by the Technology and Research Initiative Fund (TRIF) and is co-administered by AIR, CyVerse, and the Data Science Institute.

Program Leads:

  • Maliaca Oxnam
  • Eric Lyons
  • Jim Buizer
  • Betsy Woodhouse

Program Coordinator

  • Holly Ellingson

CyVerse Mentor:

  • Ryan Bartelme