There are different ways by which graduate students may be paid. Graduate Research Assistants (GRA or RA) receive a stipend for conducting research on a grant. Graduate Teaching Assistants (GTA or TA) receive a stipend for supporting the teaching mission of the department. The type of appointment and the duties (GA, TA) may vary from term to term and decisions are made within the student’s home department.
Full or partial payment of tuition and certain fees is usually part of an offer of financial aid for graduate students. The amount is determined by the student’s department.
Furthermore, a student may receive all or part of their funding from a Fellowship, which may come from the college, university, or from an external sponsor. Students usually must apply for Fellowships, and we will provide guidance for such applications. Information about Fellowship opportunities is given below.
- The Southeast Conference (SEC) Engineering Dean’s Fellowship provides $5,000 to top-off the graduate stipends of selected newly admitted PhD students whose undergraduate engineering (or related) degrees are from another official SEC university. The minimum annual overall stipend (GTA or GRA) including the SEC Engineering Deans Graduate Fellow Program stipend will be $30K plus tuition and fees. Eligible students must apply by using the form and following the instructions. The College of Engineering and Computing will award at least two new SEC Fellowships each year. We encourage students to contact their prospective departments to let them know of your intent to apply for the SEC Engineering Dean’s Fellowship. SEC Dean’s Fellows are expected to apply for additional National Fellowships (described below).
- The College of Engineering & Computing Teaching Fellowships are intended to help recruit and retain the most promising and capable domestic (U.S. citizen or permanent resident) graduate students at the PhD level. Prospective Teaching Fellows are nominated by their departments, and interested students must contact the Graduate Director of their department to be nominated. Teaching Fellows will receive full nine-month stipend support, plus $5,000 in funds to top off the stipend in the first academic year. Fellows must participate in our professional development program and support the teaching mission of their department for one academic year. Teaching Fellows are expected to apply for additional National Fellowships, described below.
- The College of Engineering & Computing Science Major Fellowships provide one year, $2,500 stipends for science majors (e.g. chemistry, physics, math, or similar fields) with a Bachelor’s degree who wish to pursue graduate studies in engineering or computing. The goal is to help science majors through a transitional semester or year that they might need to get prepared for advanced degree coursework in the college. Contact the graduate director of your intended program for more details.
- University Presidential Fellowships are awarded by the UofSC Graduate School. This Fellowship provides a supplemental $8,000 per year stipend supplement for up to four years of graduate study. Your department must nominate you for this fellowship. For more information, see the presidential fellowship page and contact the graduate director of your program.
- United States Government Fellowships Many U.S. federal agencies, as well as some private foundations, provide fellowships for U.S. citizens and permanent residents. You will receive support to apply for these Fellowships from the college and from the University Office of Fellowships and Scholars Programs.
- National GEM Consortium Fellowships The University is a member of the National GEM Consortium, and the contact is Professor Mike Matthews, Senior Associate Dean for Research and Graduate Programs in the College of Engineering and Computing. GEM Fellowships are aimed at STEM students who come from under-represented minority groups. GEM Fellowships provide partial financial support for the first year of graduate studies, as well as internships with a company. Contact Professor Matthews for more information.