Office of Faculty Affairs

Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Program (CDIP)

The California State University (CSU) Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Program (CDIP) provides an opportunity for exceptional students interested in working as scholars and teachers at the CSU to receive comprehensive support during their doctoral studies. The CSU has an ambitious goal of increasing graduation rates for all students while eliminating opportunity and achievement gaps. Fundamental to meeting this goal is supporting efforts to create a qualified and diverse faculty to meet the needs of the most ethnically and economically diverse student body in the nation. Since 1987, CDIP has supported 2,455 fellows pursuing doctoral degrees with mentoring, financial support, and professional development opportunities. 

Program Details

The program provides mentorship, professional development and financial support to doctoral students who have the motivation, skills and experience needed to teach the diverse student body of the CSU. 

CDIP facilitates the success of doctoral students by formalizing a mentoring relationship with a CSU tenured/tenure track faculty member. Through collaborative teaching, research, and service activities, faculty mentors will: 

  • Support the CDIP fellows’ successful completion of their doctoral studies; 
  • Develop the CDIP fellows’ potential for employment in an instructional faculty position at a CSU. 

More information about the CDIP faculty mentor’s role can be found on the CSU website, under Mentorship.

Through CDIP grants, we aim to support the collaborative activities of CDIP fellows and their faculty mentors. Fellows will have the opportunity to use grant funds to further their doctoral training and to attend professional conferences and workshops: 

  • Mini-Grant Program funds fellows up to $2,500 for collaborative activities and research-dissertation activities, including: research supplies, small equipment, computer programs, software, books, journal subscriptions and research related travel.
  • Travel Grant Program funds fellows and their CSU mentors up to $1,500 each for travel to participate in professional meetings, conferences and workshops.
  • Dissertation Fellowship funds fellows up to $5,000 to support doctoral studies completion in the final year of the dissertation. 

Optional Financial Loan

CDIP offers optional loans up to $10,000 per year, with a maximum amount of $30,000. This is a private loan and interest is charged:

  • Repayable over a 15-year period commencing one year after completion of, or withdrawal from, full-time doctoral study;
  • Forgivable at the rate of 20% for each year of full-time postdoctoral teaching employment in the CSU or 10% for each year of half-time postdoctoral teaching employment in the CSU. The amount forgiven is considered income, and will be taxed. 

Acceptance into the program and/or receipt of a loan or other financial support through this program and completion of the doctorate does not in any way guarantee employment as a faculty member at a CSU campus or obligate the recipient to accept such employment, if applied for and offered.

The CDIP is intended to support doctoral students interested in joining the CSU as instructional faculty. As such, students who meet ONE of the following criteria are eligible to apply: 

  • New or continuing full-time doctoral students currently enrolled in an accredited program in the U.S.
  • Undergraduate and master’s level graduate students in the process of applying to accredited doctoral programs in the U.S. (To be awarded a fellowship, applicants must be accepted into a doctoral program by May 31st.)
  • Students enrolled full-time in doctoral programs who hold full-time or part-time lecturer appointments in the CSU are eligible and encouraged to apply. (Probationary and tenured faculty members in the CSU are not eligible, regardless of their status in a doctoral program.)
  • Applicants must identify a tenured/tenure-track CSU faculty member to serve as mentor. 

Application Process

Eligibility to participate in the program is based on the information provided on the application. It is critical that you provide current and complete information about where you attend (or will attend) graduate school.

We advise that you contact a potential faculty mentor in advance since the application process involves both a letter of recommendation from your faculty member and a co-constructed Collaborative Plan of support developed by you and your faculty member. Please submit your Pomona CDIP application materials in PDF form via email to Monica Santander at by February 15th, 2023, 11:59 PM PST.

The following information below entails application information specific to the Cal Poly Pomona CDIP program. If you are interested in working with another CSU campus/faculty from another CSU campus, please review the CDIP program website of the respective campus and contact their CDIP coordinator for details on how to apply through their campus. A directory can be found here.

Checklist of Application Materials:
  • Curriculum vitae (limited to four pages)
  • Statement of Qualifications and Motivation (limited to three pages)
  • Collaborative Plan of Support (co-constructed by Cal Poly Pomona faculty mentor and applicant)
  • Two professional letters of recommendation; one letter must be from your selected Cal Poly Pomona faculty mentor. If you are currently enrolled in a doctoral program, the other letter must be from a faculty member at that institution.
  • A recent CSU faculty position announcement in the applicant’s general field that has been posted at a CSU campus 

Include a current resume or curriculum vitae (CV), limited to four pages. Your CV should focus on your academic and professional accomplishments, including scholarly conference presentations at regional or national meetings and publications (e.g., peer-reviewed journal articles, book chapters, books).

Describe your qualifications for the Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Program. The statement should be limited to three single-sided pages and should address how the following have contributed to your commitment to become a CSU faculty member:

  • academic preparation (e.g., academic achievements, awards, honors, and fellowships);
  • professional experiences in teaching and research;
  • motivation and interest in becoming a university professor (both as a teacher and a fellow);
  • connection to the CSU (e.g., former/current CSU student or lecturer, knowledge of the CSU mission and role in preparing California’s workforce);
  • dedication and ability to educate a diverse student body.

Please note: Students from a professional and/or online doctoral degree program (see Participant Eligibility) must address in their Qualifications and Motivation Statement their professional goal as a university faculty member. This also needs to be addressed in the mentor’s letter of recommendation.

Sample Statements: Sample 1 | Sample 2

Note: The samples indicate the range of styles, content and format that CDIP applicants use in the Qualifications and Motivation Statement attachments. All identifying information has been removed from these actual submitted statements.

Applicants to the program must have a CSU faculty mentor. The faculty mentor must be full-time tenured/tenure-track CSU faculty member. The objectives of the mentor/student interactions are to assist the student in his/her doctoral program, to help the student understand the workings of higher education institutions and the faculty labor market specific to particular disciplines, and to aid the student in the development of skills relevant to success as a CSU tenure-track faculty member. Please see faculty mentor for more information about CDIP faculty mentor’s role and eligibility.

Faculty mentor and applicant are required to jointly develop a written plan of support describing how they intend to maintain communication and collaborate. The plan should describe clearly defined activities with a timeline that is designed to assist the applicant through his/her doctoral studies. The quality of this support plan is critically important in the application selection process.

The contents of the plan may vary depending on the prior contact that the applicant may have had with the faculty and the extent to which he/she is acclimated to the demands of a doctoral program and the expectations of future faculty in the CSU. Detailed instructions can be found in the ​CDIP Application Guidelines under Competition files on InfoReady.

Samples for Plan of Support: Sample 1 | Sample 2

Note: The samples indicate the range of styles, content and format that CDIP applicants use in the Collaborative Plan of Support attachments. All identifying information has been removed from these actual submitted statements.

Two current professional letters of recommendation are required with this application, addressing: 

  • The quality of applicant’s proposed plan of study (including the quality of the institution and department where applicant intends to pursue his/her doctoral degree)
  • The applicant’s potential to succeed as a doctoral student and be hired as a CSU tenure-track instructional faculty (particularly important for professional and/or online doctoral degree program applicants)
  • The applicant’s experience and motivation in educating a diverse student body in the CSU 

References should include the reference’s name, address, email, and telephone number. One of the letters must be from the applicant’s CSU faculty mentor, which should also describe the mentor’s approach to mentoring graduate students and, if available, successes with guiding past students through their doctoral education and faculty job search. If applicant is currently enrolled in a doctoral program, The other letter must be from a faculty member at that institution. 

The faculty mentor should provide the student applicant, for inclusion with his/her application, a copy of a recent tenure-track faculty position announcement in the student’s general field of study that has been posted at a CSU campus. The purpose of the job posting is to provide evidence that the CSU has recently sought to hire individuals in the field/specialization pursued by the applicant. The existence of a job posting in the student’s field does not imply or guarantee that similar jobs will be available when the participant applies for employment in the CSU. However, the lack of a relevant job posting in recent years may indicate that there is little demand for faculty in the field pursued by the student.

Please submit all application materials in PDF form by email to Monica Santander at by February 15, 2023, 11:59 PM PST.

If you would like to review and discuss your application materials before the deadline, please schedule a virtual meeting here.

Selection Process

Applications for the Chancellor’s Doctoral Incentive Program are submitted through the CSU campus of the CSU faculty mentor. After submitting your application to your CDIP coordinator, and in this case, to Monica Santander in PDF form via email at by February 15, 2023, 11:59PM PST, your application will subsequently be sent to a campus committee that evaluates the applications and makes recommendations for further consideration to the campus president by March 2023. The president then forwards campus nominations to the CSU Chancellor’s Office. Finally, a systemwide committee reviews the campus nominations and makes recommendations to the Chancellor for final approval. Selection announcements will be made in June 2023.

Fellows will receive communication regarding the status of their application via email. If you are selected for nomination by the campus, we will contact you to submit your approved application materials via the CSU InfoReady site, so that the systemwide committee can review your materials.

No, you do not have to specifically work at that campus. We encourage our CDIP alumni to apply to any of the CSU campuses.

No, it is not too early to apply. In the past, CDIP has accepted fellows that applied while in their undergraduate applying to doctoral programs, while in their master's applying to doctoral programs, and current doctoral students. What is important is that you emphasize your vision, commitments, and plans as a current or future teacher-scholar of the CSU.

Yes, you can apply to CDIP as many times as you like. There is no limit to how many times you can apply.

Yes, being in a professional doctoral degree program meets the minimum qualification regarding doctoral enrollment. In fact, we have CDIP alumni from EdD doctoral programs. However, please make sure that when you apply, you address and emphasize in your Qualifications and Motivation Statement your professional goal as a university faculty member. Your professional goal as a university faculty member also needs to be addressed in your mentor’s letter of recommendation as well. If you would like to discuss this further or have any questions, please make a virtual appointment with CDIP coordinator, Mary Jane Wade at