A limited number of fellowships are available to nationally-competitive new doctoral students through the Dean’s Ph.D. Fellowship Program.

Dean’s Ph.D. Fellowship Program 2015-2016

Description: The Dean of the SPHHS will offer up to five Ph.D. non-working fellowships to nationally-competitive new graduate student applicants. The intent of this program is to facilitate the recruitment of top-quality doctoral students and not to support students currently in the SPHHS.

Term of appointment: Each fellowship is for one year but may be renewed for a second year.

Stipend: Each fellow will receive up to $10,000 per year from the Dean’s office. The recipient must maintain excellent academic standing, and apply for an externally-funded graduate student fellowship such as a National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship, the Ford Pre-doctoral Diversity Fellowship or other nationally-competitive fellowship appropriate to the student’s discipline to be eligible to receive the second year of funding. The fellowship will not be renewed if any requirement is unmet.

All funds received from the Dean’s office must be matched by either Departmental funds or faculty grant funds (up to $10,000 per year) and cannot be from start-up funds. Additional funding beyond the combined $20,000 amount is encouraged, from additional faculty grant funding during the academic year or a summer stipend.


  1. Each fellow will be recruited by a specific faculty member who will commit to funding two years of the fellow’s program for up to $10,000/year.  (This commitment can be from departmental/division funds, the specific faculty’s grants and/or RTF).
  2. Fellows must apply for a nationally-competitive external fellowship in year one.
  3. If a SPHHS fellowship is awarded for a second year and in the event that the above mentioned application is unsuccessful, fellows must apply for nationally-competitive external fellowship in year two.
  4. Preference will be given to potential applicants who are residing in the US at the time of application.
  5. Preference will be given to applicants who already have a master’s level degree or equivalent.

Application and Evaluation Process:

  1. Applications should be sent electronically to Carey Simos (csimos@schoolph.umass.edu) with a copy to Dean Marjorie Aelion (maelion@schoolph.umass.edu) and Associate Dean Joseph Hamill (jhamill@kin.umass.edu) no later than December 18, 2015. After that date, applications will be accepted on a rolling basis and only if funds are available.
  2. A full application to include the following:
    • The full Graduate school application packet.
    • A statement from the nominating faculty member of how this applicant will complement the faculty’s research with a plan describing what the student will be contributing.
    • A statement committing the funds for the department/faculty share over the course of the fellow’s tenure including specific source.
  3. A review committee will consider all applications and provide recommendations to the Dean.
  4. All candidates recommended by the review committee will be interviewed (either in person or via phone) by the Dean or a representative of the Dean.
  5. The Dean or the Dean’s review committee will make a final decision in time to offer the potential student funding along with his or her acceptance into the specific department’s Ph.D. program.
  6. To be considered for a continuation of the fellowship into a second year, applicants must electronically submit evidence of excellent academic standing and a copy of their external fellowship proposal and its evaluation (if available) to Carey Simos (csimos@schoolph.umass.edu) with a copy to Dean Marjorie Aelion (maelion@schoolph.umass.edu) and Associate Dean for Research Joseph Hamill (jhamill@kin.umass.edu).

Potential indicators of nationally-competitive students:

  • Presentations at national meetings and/or peer-reviewed publications
  • GRE scores above 1300
  • Experience submitting applications for and/or receiving extramural funds

Potential nationally-competitive fellowship programs:

  1. The Fogarty Institute has many potential sources for pre-doctoral funding on its website.
  2. The NIH has funding for diversity in Health-related research:
  3. The National Science Foundation offers a Graduate Research Fellowship Program.
  4. The Ford Foundation offers a Fellowship Program.

For information on additional opportunities and guidance, graduate students may contact: