External Fellowships and Combined Award Policy

To benefit both their current work and their future career prospects, students are strongly encouraged to seek funding from external agencies through grants. These awards, sponsored by both public and private agencies, confer distinction on a student who wins an award in a national competition. They are often more generous than the fellowships the University is able to provide.

Students receiving external awards have two options. They may either (1) hold the outside awards in conjunction with University stipends (including research and teaching fellowships) up to the total of the standard department/program stipend plus $4,000 (pro-rated for external awards of less than one year) or (2) defer financial support awarded in their admission offer for up to one year but not beyond year six. Students must report to the Office of Financial Aid any scholarship or fellowship received from an outside agency or organization. The office and the associate dean will then assist students in considering the benefits of each option.

Option 1: Supplementation of an External Fellowship

During the twelve-month academic year (September 1–August 31), the Graduate School’s stipend award, made at the time of admission, may be used to supplement the sum of all external stipend awards to a maximum stipend equal to the total of the standard department/program stipend plus $4,000 (pro-rated for external awards of less than one year). If the sum of the Graduate School’s initial stipend award and all outside awards exceeds this limit, the Graduate School’s stipend award will be reduced accordingly. In instances where an external award does not cover the full twelve-month academic year, the combined award will be determined by prorating the combined award over the period when the internal and external awards overlap.

Students who receive external fellowships providing yearly stipends that are more than the total of the standard department/program stipend plus $4,000 will retain the full external fellowship funding and will receive no university supplement.

In many cases, the Graduate School’s stipend award includes a Teaching Fellowship. Recipients of external awards may waive one term of teaching per year if the annual combined value of the external award and the pay rate for the expected teaching ($4,000 for a TF10; $8,000 for a TF20) exceeds the value of the combined award (standard department stipend plus $4,000). Teaching that is part of an academic requirement may not be waived.

Option 2: Deferral of Graduate School Funding

Students receiving external awards in years one through five of study may defer up to one year of the Graduate School’s stipend award made at the time of admission. Stipend awards may not be deferred beyond the sixth year of study.