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Funding

All admitted students are offered a five-year funding package, contingent upon satisfactory progress toward degree and performance as a Graduate Student Instructor.  This funding offer includes tuition coverage, stipend or salary, summer support, and health and dental insurance for you and eligible dependents. The basic funding package currently includes one year on fellowship and up to four years teaching as a Graduate Student Instructor (GSI), though many students have the opportunity to work as a Graduate Student Research Assistant instead of a GSI in years four or five.

Although your support is guaranteed as described for five consecutive years, all eligible students—especially those in the fourth and fifth years—are strongly encouraged to apply for funding from the National Science Foundation, Social Science Research Council, Fulbright, Foreign Language and Area Studies, or Ford Foundation, as well as University of Michigan funding outside of the department such as fellowships from the Rackham Graduate School or the International Institute in order to carry out data collection for the dissertation. Students who win these prestigious fellowships are able to reduce their teaching obligations and make faster progress in the program. These awards also add luster to an academic curriculum vitae, and in the past, our students have been very successful in their pursuit of these awards.  

Additional funding for research costs and conference travel are also available to our students through the Rackham Graduate School. Rackham provides funding in both the precandidacy and candidacy phases of study for research expenses. Rackham Student Research Funds are available for all graduate students, and you are encouraged to use both your $1,500 in precandidate funds and your $3,000 in candidate funds. Rackham also supports  annual conference travel through their Rackham Conference Travel Grant. In the past, the Department of Political Science has been able to supplement Rackham funds so that students receive more research support and are able to do even more travelling for conference presentations.