Paying for College

There are various options available for students paying for graduate school. Students have the option of applying for programs afforded by the Graduate School, or programs that are offered on an individual, program-specific basis.

Graduate School Assistantships and Fellowships

How they work

Graduate assistantships and fellowships are competitive funding opportunities granted by individual graduate programs. While primarily associated with PhD programs, many master's programs also offer these awards.

What they do

Provide a monthly stipend in order to aid in pursuit of studies and allow the student to be fully devoted to carrying out activities required by the program, including coursework and any research or teaching efforts. Some also include tuition and health insurance coverage.

UAB Blazer Graduate Research Fellowship program

The UAB Graduate School awards Blazer Graduate Research Fellowships annually to highly qualified first-year doctoral candidates who are engaged in full-time research. These fellowships provide students with financial support for stipend, tuition, and health insurance for four consecutive academic terms. Students will be supported after completion of the Blazer Graduate Research Fellowship by the faculty mentor’s intra- or extramural grant awards, contracts, institutional training grants, individual fellowship awards, or start-up packages in the case of new faculty.


While not all programs offer financial support, many programs offer a variety of funding mechanisms, including:

Graduate research assistantships are typically funded by the research mentor’s grants.

Institutional training grants provide funds to groups of researchers working in a similar area who in turn award them to individual students based on a competitive application process.

Individual research fellowships can be applied for with the assistance of your mentor. These highly competitive grants are available from federal agencies such as the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health, as well as private foundations.

Graduate student scholarships usually involve a competitive selection process and based on specific criteria.

Diversity fellowships and grant supplements are designed to enhance diversity in the sciences and academia.

Graduate teaching assistantships involve both assisting faculty in teaching classes and teaching undergraduate courses under faculty supervision.

Students are encouraged to reach out to their program to see what funding opportunities may be available.

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