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Graduate students in research lab

Monetary Awards Support Graduate Education

As we seek to increase the number of supported graduate students and improve graduate education, the Graduate School has forged an exciting partnership with the Office of Research and Engagement to provide 20 four-year graduate research assistant positions.

This partnership will fund the FY 2019 iteration of our Tennessee Fellowship for Graduate Excellence (TFGE), the signature graduate fellowship program launched last year to help us recruit some of the nation’s best and brightest students.

Through this program, ORE will supply a graduate tuition waiver and the Graduate School will provide a fellowship of $10,000 a year to each awardee. The award is given in addition to the graduate stipend covered by the departments or colleges, creating a total package that is highly competitive. Read details of the program on the Graduate School website.

Applications were due January 17 and are now being evaluated. Departments were notified of the success of their applications on January 29 and offers made to graduate students on February 1. Nominees have until April 15 to accept their award offers.

Applicants not chosen for the TFGE will automatically be considered for one of the endowed graduate school fellowships. Those decisions are made in early March—still early enough to attract most students.

Building a strong graduate program requires money, and in recent years we’ve made significant strides in creating funding programs that help us recruit and support graduate students. Investments in graduate education include the following:

  • The Graduate School offers about $4.5 million in graduate fellowships each year, benefiting nearly 800 students.
  • Each year more than 1,600 graduate students collectively receive about $16 million in tuition waivers and $23 million in stipends.
  • Starting last year, the Graduate School began earmarking approximately $100,000 to help fund research projects in which a faculty member and a graduate student serve as co-principal investigators. Applications are reviewed each spring and fall semesters.
  • The provost’s office provides $200,000 annually for graduate students to travel to conduct or present research. This funding has benefited almost 400 students in 2017–18.

GPSAW Coming in April

Our fourth annual Graduate and Professional Student Appreciation Week will be celebrated April 2–6. The Three-Minute Thesis competition will take place Friday, April 6, and semifinals will be held in late February and early March.

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