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Tibor T. Polgar Fellowship

2018 Tibor T. Polgar Fellows

The Hudson River Foundation and the NYS DEC awarded eight Polgar Fellowships in 2018.

      • Detecting Cyanobacteria in the Hudson River Using Fluorescent Sensors Suitable for Real-time Deployment – Corey Rundquist, Millbrook School
      • Role of Marshes and Tributaries in the Benthic Accumulation and Water Column Transportation of Microplastics in the Hudson Valley Watershed – Jason Randall, Marist College
      • Effects of Four Polymer Plastics on Crassostrea virginica Filtration and Retention – Erika Bernal, Montclair State University
      • The Effect of Salinity on Eastern Oyster Reproduction in the Hudson River Estuary – Kaili Gregory, Cornell University
      • Bugs on Drugs: The Influence of Redox Environments on the Microbial Degradation of Pharmaceuticals in the Hudson River Watershed – Michelle Zeliph, Rutgers University
      • Sexual Reproduction in Vallisneria americana Beds in the Hudson River – Carrie Perkins, University of Maryland
      • Painted Turtle Study in a Freshwater Tidal Marsh: Concluding Survey – Virginia Caponera, Drexel University
      • The Ground Underneath Our Feet: Investigating the Paleohistory of Ramshorn-Livingston Marsh – Elizabeth Thompson, Columbia University


The next cycle of the Polgar Fellowship will begin in early 2020.

The following information refers to the 2019 cycle:

The Tibor T. Polgar Fellowship program is a student research program conducted through the Hudson River Foundation in cooperation with the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation. Named in honor of the late Dr. Tibor T. Polgar, a major contributor to the early development of the Foundation, this program provides a summertime grant ($5,000 for each fellowship) and research funds (up to $1,500) for eight college students (undergraduate and graduate) to conduct research on the Hudson River.

The objectives of the program are to gather important information on all aspects of the River and to train students in conducting scientific studies and public policy research.

Read below for more information about application instructions.

Application Procedures

Applications for a Polgar Fellowship should include:

  • A letter of interest in the program;
  • A short description (4-6 pages) of the research project, including a statement of its significance;
  • A timetable for completion of the research (maximum of one summer season);
  • An estimate of the cost of supplies, travel, etc. (up to $1,500);
  • A letter of support from the student’s advisor, which can be submitted separately (indicating not only the qualification of the student, but also the time and resources that the advisor is willing to commit to their project); and
  • The applicant’s résumé.


Because of the training and educational aspects of this program, each potential fellow must be sponsored by a primary advisor. The advisor must be willing to commit sufficient time for supervision of the research, to review fellow’s final written report, and to attend the orientation and final report meetings with their students. Advisors will receive a stipend of $500.

To be eligible, applicants must be enrolled in an undergraduate or graduate program, or accepted into a graduate program for the following fall. Both undergraduate and early career graduate students may apply. Projects must be designed to be completed during one summer season.

Application Submission

Applications, in electronic PDF format, for Polgar Fellowships must be received by the Foundation by 5:00 pm, Monday, February 11, 2019. The electronic copy of the application should be sent in one PDF file to info@hudsonriver.org. with the subject heading “Polgar Proposal Submittal.” One original copy, postmarked no later than Monday, February 11, 2019, must be sent to:

Polgar Fellowship Committee
Hudson River Foundation
17 Battery Place, Suite 915
New York, NY 10004.

If you have questions, or if you wish to discuss research ideas or to acquire copies of previous Polgar Fellowship Program annual reports, contact Helena Andreyko at 212-483-7667.

Successful applicants will be notified of their fellowship awards by early April 2019.

Hudson River National Estuarine Research Reserve

Since 1985, the Polgar Fellowship program has produced a large body of research relevant to the Hudson River watershed, with a concentration on the four marshes of the Hudson River National Estuarine Research Reserve (Stockport Flats, the Tivoli Bays, Iona Island Marsh, and Piermont Marsh), compiled in the annual Polgar Fellowship reports published by the Foundation. Anyone interested in obtaining this material in order to plan projects building on the work of previous Polgar fellowships or in discussing potential research topics should contact the Foundation.