WRF Innovation Fellows Program

About the Program

Thanks to the generous support of the Washington Research Foundation (WRF), the Clean Energy Institute has recruited an impressive cohort of Innovation Fellows to the University of Washington to pursue research solar energy conversion, energy storage, and grid integration technologies. This fellowship program provides exceptional postdoctoral fellows the funding and support to pursue an innovative research project in the laboratory of a CEI faculty member.


WRF Innovation Fellows Activities

  • Regular events and activities such as the Perfect Pitch Competition are organized by WRF-funded Institutes as well as the Washington Research Foundation.
  • Field Trips: Periodically we will arrange interesting energy related tours of area businesses and installations for our students. We have visited Itek Solar, Microsoft Smart Building Operations Center, and PNNL labs. Contact education director Shaun Taylor if you have an idea for a field trip.
  • Interdisciplinary Seminar Series: WRF Innovation Fellows have the opportunity to meet an impressive set of invited speakers each quarter. Fellows should enroll in MoLES 599 to get credit for this series. If you would like to have lunch with a visiting speaker, or have an suggestion for a future speaker, please send a message to our seminar coordinator. Include the speaker name, area of interest, and reason for inviting if you are recommending a speaker.
  • CleanTech Alliance Breakfast Series: Following the success of last year’s Breakfast Series we are providing 1 free breakfast ticket per month to CEI Fellows. Breakfasts are happen on the second Wednesday of each month (see current schedule). Contact senior communications manager Suzanne Offen if you are interested in attending with CEI’s ticket. We recommend business attire and using public transportation if possible; parking can be expensive.
  • Element 8 Meetings: One of CEI’s partner organization is the clean energy investment group Element 8. Their regular meetings are good place to network with the business community and see a real live pitch for a new project each month. (See current schedule and Contact senior communications manager Suzanne Offen if you are interested in attending.)
  • Outreach Activities: Lead K-12 students in hands-on activities and present at community events such as Paws On Science, Engineering Discovery Days, and many other events as a Clean Energy Ambassador.
  • Professional Development: CEI is committed to providing the highest level of academic and professional preparation for its members. Fellows have opportunities to participate in professional ethics training, designing broader impacts programs, communicating science to the public, and specialized training in graphics and video production that will prepare them for a productive career. Opportunities will be offered throughout the year; contact education director Shaun Taylor with ideas or inquiries.


Learn more about other WRF-funded Innovation Fellows Programs at the University of Washington.

Meet the current Inovation Fellows.

The Washington Research Foundation has provided a six-year gift of $6.74 million to support nine new faculty hires, six postdoctoral researchers and the creation of a new experimental manufacturing facility on campus that will help move discoveries from the laboratory to the marketplace. This investment in the CEI is truly transformational.”
– Daniel Schwartz, CEI Director
“Providing clean energy to the inhabitants of our planet is a major challenge to future generations. The University of Washington is to be congratulated for establishing an Institute where faculty and students can work together to tackle the difficult global challenge of energy sustainability.”
– Mildred Dresselhaus, Professor of Physics and Electrical Engineering, Emerita and Institute Professor, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
“Energy competition is opening up in a variety of ways, the push for carbon control will continue, and the rate of technology advancement is exponential. All the things I’ve seen at the CEI are just perfect for the way we see things going in energy. You guys are at the cutting edge. We’re counting on you.”
– Ronald Litzinger, President, Edison Energy
Since its founding the Clean Energy Institute has contributed more than $1.1 million toward the education of 66 STEM scholars and recruitment of 12 students through our fellowship programs.