Education and Human Development

Fellowships, scholarships, assistantships, and grants for graduate students

As a graduate student in CEHD, you may be eligible for fellowships, grants, and scholarships from the University of Minnesota, from our college, and from your academic department.

University-wide fellowships, grants, and scholarships are administered through the UMN’s Graduate School and are based on merit.

CEHD offers college-specific fellowships and scholarships to both incoming and current graduate students. Additionally, CEHD offers college-specific funding to students pursuing teacher licensure through our initial licensure/M.Ed. programs.

For scholarships and awards administered in your academic department, please check with your department’s Graduate Programs staff.

Graduate financial aid

Financial aid for your graduate program works a little differently than financial aid at the undergraduate level. It’s important to know the differences and explore your options before accepting loans.

Some things to know about financial aid at the graduate school level:

  • You don’t need to enter your parents’ information on your financial aid application.
  • Need-based Pell Grants are not available at the graduate school level. Unfortunately, there is no need-based federal grant program for graduate students.
  • Interest rates are higher for graduate students than they are for undergraduate students. Interest rates for graduate school can range (between 3% and 8%).
  • There are borrowing limits for graduate students. The current federal direct student unsubsidized loan limit is $138,500 for graduate and professional students.
  • The Federal Graduate PLUS loan is a credit-worthy loan that graduate students may borrow up to their cost of attendance outside of loan limits.

Federal Application for Student Financial Aid (FAFSA)

Completing the FASFA is pretty easy. It takes an average of 17 minutes for students to complete.* Follow these basic steps.

  1. To get started, complete and submit your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) available online at Submit your FAFSA by the priority deadline to ensure timely processing. The University of Minnesota code is: 003969
  2. Submit all requested additional forms and documentation.
  3. Read and review all notifications concerning your financial aid as alerted on your University of Minnesota MyU Finances page.
  4. Review awards to accept, reduce or decline financial aid awards as indicated on your University of Minnesota MyU Finances page.
  5. Complete and submit promissory notes for any accepted loans.

Additional resources

  • Federal student aid resources (For more information on financial aid planning)
  • Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA website)
  • Benefits for veterans (UMN Financial Aid & Scholarships website)


For incoming graduate students

    CEHD Graduate Student Fellowship

    • A highly competitive one-year fellowship including full tuition, pay stipend, and health insurance.
    • Newly admitted Ph.D. students from outside the University of Minnesota are eligible.
    • If selected, recipients are expected to make considerable progress in their programs. Expected course load is 9-12 graduate credits per semester, with cumulative GPA of 3.5 or higher.
    • Students do not apply directly for the fellowship, but are nominated by faculty in their graduate program.

    CEHD Graduate Student Fellowship

    • Amount: Each department/school receives $1,900 (divided up at department discretion).
    • Criteria: Full-time new or current graduate students in any CEHD department or program are eligible.
    • Contact: All questions should be directed to the department/school.

    For current graduate students

      Bruininks-Hagstrum Endowed Fellowship Fund (EDPSY Only)

      • Amount: $4,000 (divided up at department discretion)
      • Criteria: Current full-time graduate student with study emphasis in educational policy and reform of educational and human services programs that focus on children and youth with special learning needs.
      • Contact: All questions should be directed to the department.

      Seashore Graduate Fellowship

      • Amount: Two awards of $3,000
      • Deadline: March 28, 2024
      • Contact: Michael DallaValle, Dean's Office
      • Email:
      • Criteria: Applicants must be doctoral students enrolled in the Graduate School for the academic year in which the award will be made. An applicant’s research interests should focus on issues of broad social inquiry problems, social and cultural change, or social justice. The applicant's dissertation topic should be approved at the time of this award and evidence of a strong academic record should be evident. Only students enrolled full-time are eligible.


      Please email the following information to in one document (word or PDF)

      1. A one-page personal statement that outlines why you are a candidate for this award. This may include your personal and academic history, research and teaching interests, and anything else you feel is pertinent for the selection committee to know
      2. Resume or curriculum vita (not to exceed two pages)
      3. Names of two academic references we can contact.

      *All applicants will receive a notification letter regardless of your status.

      Women’s Philanthropic Leadership Circle Graduate Awards

      Alumni Society Advanced Study Scholarship

      • Amount: Each department/school receives $2,500 (divided up at department discretion).
      • Criteria: Full-time new or current graduate students enrolled in any masters or doctoral program. (This does not include ILP students).
      • Contact: All questions should be directed to the department/school.

      Graduate assistantships

      Graduate assistantships provide tuition benefits based on factors including appointment percentage of employment (12.5% up to 50%) and job classification. With a 50% appointment, grad students receive full tuition support.

      When you apply to a program in CEHD, you will have a chance to say whether or not you would like to be considered for an assistantship in your application. Your answer will not affect your chances of getting accepted. Once you have been admitted to a program, you may work with your department to apply for available assistantships. Assistantships are often offered as part of a funding package.

      Additionally, there are many other assistantships offered throughout the University. Applying for open research and administrative assistantships outside your academic department or college can prepare you for interdisciplinary work and offer you a rich social experience. You might get exposed to other research methods or meet graduate students from departments you wouldn’t have connected with otherwise.

      For more information on assistantship policy, please see the UMN’s Office of Human Resources.

      Graduate student fellowship and scholarship opportunities

      The Abe Fellowship

      The Abe Fellowship is designed to encourage international multidisciplinary research on topics of pressing global concern. This competition is open to citizens of the United States and Japan as well as to nationals of other countries who can demonstrate strong and serious long-term affiliations with research communities in Japan or the United States.

      Ford Foundation Fellowship Programs

      The Ford Foundation seeks to increase the diversity of the nation’s college and university faculties by increasing their ethnic and racial diversity, to maximize the educational benefits of diversity, and to increase the number of professors who can and will use diversity as a resource for enriching the education of all students.

      American Indian College Fund (AICF)

      Disburses approximately 6,000 scholarships annually for American Indian students seeking to better their lives through higher education.

      Knowles Science Teaching Fellowship

      The Knowles Science Teaching Foundation offers one of the most comprehensive fellowship programs in the nation for STEM teachers starting their first or second year of teaching. Find out how you can apply to be part of this amazing national network of math and science teachers.

      Robbinsdale Association of Retired Educators (RARE) Scholarship

      Applicant must have a connection with Robbinsdale schools (ISD 281), such as a former student, teacher, or current district resident. Applications are due in the spring, usually early May. For more information, contact Don Hanson (952-474-4411) or Stu Stockhaus (763-537-3181).

      Private support and external funding resources

      The terms ‘private support’ and ‘external funding’ refer to funding sources that are not affiliated with the University of Minnesota. Locating and applying to these sources of funding may take some time but can be well-worth the effort.

      If you are interested in researching your own fellowship, grant, and scholarship opportunities, we recommend using the Foundation Center’s database. As a student, you have access to the Foundation Center’s database through the UMN Libraries. If you are a prospective student, many local libraries offer subscriptions you can use for free. Find a funding information network location.