Graduate Student Support

Most of our graduate students are fully supported through research assistantships, teaching assistantships, or fellowships. These include a monthly stipend, a full waiver for tuition, and health benefits. 

University Fellowships:

Highest-ranked applicants may qualify for one of three prestigious MSU fellowships. If you would like to be considered for one of these competitive fellowships, make sure to mention this in the cover letter of your application.

  • University Distinguished Fellowships: full support (stipend, health insurance and tuition waiver) for 1st and 5th years contingent on progress towards degree. Due in early January for new applicants to MSU.
  • Environmental Science and Policy Program - Doctoral Recruiting Fellowships: full support in year 1, followed by Department support for 2 years. Due in early February for new applicants to MSU.
  • College of Natural Science Fellowships: full support in 1st year, followed by Department support for 1 or 3 years (MSc or PhD students, respectively). Due in early January for new applicants to MSU.
  • Dissertation Continuation Award – open to students in the middle of their graduate degree. Applications due for Fall semester approximately middle of June; Spring semester approximately early November; Summer semester approximately late February
  • Dissertation Completion Award – open to students for the last semester of their graduate degree. Applications due for Fall semester approximately middle of June; Spring semester approximately early November; Summer semester approximately late February

Department Fellowships:

The Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences at Michigan State University has newly endowed funds to support several competitive fellowships for outstanding PhD students.

Faculty Research Assistantships:

Research assistantships are available through externally funded projects to individual faculty advisors. Contact potential advisors directly for more information.

Department Teaching Assistantships:

The department has several TA positions, which are made available to the best Graduate School applicants.

Department Awards and Fellowships:

Graduate Travel Grant applications are solicited twice each year. Fall semester applications (e.g. for AGU Fall meeting) will be due in early October, and Spring applications will be due approximately the middle of February.

The department offers several merit-based supplementary scholarships and awards to outstanding graduate students. All awards are independent, and student may be nominated/apply for multiple awards. **Applications are due each year in approximately late March.

  • Lucile Drake Pringle and Gordon H. Pringle Endowed Fellowship: Students can self-nominate or be nominated by faculty. To be eligible, students must be enrolled in their graduate program in the following fall semester. The nomination packet includes:
    1. Academic CV,
    2. Statement of professional goals
    3. Demonstration(s) of academic achievements and development of professional goals, with focus on academic achievements in the past year.
    4. Academic progress report that includes current informal course transcript and a statement as to current status in terms of degree requirements.
  • Neal Research Award for Graduate Students: The proposal needs to be approved (signed) by the advisor. The application packet includes:
    1. 1. Academic CV
    2. 2. Statement of professional goals
    3. 3. Demonstration(s) of academic achievements and development of professional goals
    4. 4. Academic progress report that includes current informal course transcript and a statement as to current status in terms of degree requirements
    5. 5. Up to one page proposal justifying research needs for funds by student, including budget.
  • Dr. Aureal T. Cross Endowed Graduate Fellowship: Preference will be given to students whose interests are in paleobiology, stratigraphy, or related disciplines. The proposal needs to be approved (signed) by the advisor. The nomination packet includes:
    1. Academic CV
    2. Statement of professional goals
    3. Demonstration(s) of academic achievements and development of professional goals.
    4. Academic progress report that includes current informal course transcript and a statement as to current status.
    5. Up to one page proposal justifying research needs for funds by student, including budget.

 

The following merit-based awards do not require applications by students but faculty may send nominations to the Graduate Affairs Committee:

  • Thomas A. Vogel Endowed Fund in Geology of the Solid Earth
  • Excellence in Teaching Award
  • Excellence in MS Thesis Research Award
  • Excellence in Ph.D. Dissertation Research Award