Looking to Expand Your Professional Horizons?
Congressional Science Fellowship
Put your expertise to work helping shape science and technology policy on Capitol Hill. The GSA-USGS Congressional Science Fellow spends a year working as a staff member for a Member of Congress or congressional committee.
If you are an earth scientist with a broad geologic background, experience in applying scientific knowledge to societal challenges, and a passion for helping shape the future of the geoscience profession, GSA invites your application before the 1 February deadline. Please read our detailed fellowship page for more information.
Learn more about fellows’ experiences by reading current and past Congressional Science Fellow reports.
The Congressional Science Fellowship is offered by the Geological Society of America and the U.S. Geological Survey as part of the American Association for the Advancement of Science Congressional Science and Engineering Fellows Program.
Kirstin L. Neff
Kirstin L. Neff earned a B.A. cum laude from Wellesley College in 2008, with majors in political science and Russian language and literature. She wrote a senior honors thesis on U.S. immigration policy, and received an award from the Economics Department for her paper on tariffs in the cement industry. She conducted ecological research on Lake Baikal in Siberia and studied abroad in St. Petersburg and Moscow, Russia. While at Wellesley, she was a managing editor of the International Relations Council Journal, a student-run peer-reviewed publication.
Kirstin received an M.S. (2013) and Ph.D. (2015) in hydrology from the University of Arizona in her hometown of Tucson. She was awarded a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Science to Achieve Results (EPA STAR) Fellowship to support her doctoral research, which used stable water isotopes to characterize the seasonality of groundwater recharge across the Basin and Range Province of western North America. Her research has implications for climate change and development impacts to aquifers. Most recently, she was a postdoctoral scholar at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory working on satellite radar measurements of subsidence in California’s Central Valley.
Kirstin has expertise in hydrologic modeling, water policy, remote sensing and spatial analysis, K-12 science outreach, and international relations. She has extensive experience in communicating scientific and technical information, having worked as a technical writer in the engineering sector and as a mentor scientist for several outdoor education programs. She is fluent in English, Spanish, and Russian.
Kirstin is thrilled to serve as the 2016-2017 GSA-USGS Congressional Science Fellow. She is passionate about building a scientifically literate workforce through STEM education and conserving our natural resources through public outreach and scientifically-sound policymaking. In her fellowship year she is looking forward to learning about the legislative process and further developing her science communication skills while contributing her scientific expertise to the policymaking process.