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Funding and Assistantships

There are several opportunities for financial assistance and employment for students who attend graduate school in the Davis College. Students may be employed by the college or in the industries in which they hope to find permanent employment once they graduate. Valuable knowledge and experience can be gained by taking advantage of these opportunities. Waivers of WVU tuition are also available to those students who qualify. West Virginia University annually awards about 1,500 graduate assistantships and about 200 fellowships. All graduate assistants and fellows are required to be enrolled as full-time graduate students each semester. To be considered full-time, graduate students must be enrolled in nine or more credit hours during the fall and spring semesters, or six or more credit hours during the summer. It is important to note that graduate assistants, unlike fellowships which require no service, are expected to perform duties satisfactorily as specified by the graduate professor to which they are assigned.

Graduate Teaching Assistant

A person who holds a graduate teaching assistantship (GTA) is obligated to teach courses, laboratory classes, or other forms of instructional assistance not to exceed, on average, 20 hours per week. These assistantships are generally available only through the academic units. No graduate student can be appointed to a GTA position after the second week of the semester.

Graduate Research Assistant

A graduate research assistant’s (GRA) duties consist of assisting a faculty member in research efforts with an obligation not to exceed, on average, 20 hours per week in any semester. Since graduate research assistantships are primarily funded by grants and other third party sources, and since the arrival of these funds at the University often does not coincide with the beginning of an academic semester, University policy is that the deadline for GRA appointments is no later than the end of the fifth week of classes. Exceptions to these deadlines generally will not be made unless extenuating circumstances exist. Requests for late appointments must be made in writing from the hiring unit, signed by the college/school dean, and sent to the Assistant Vice President for Graduate Education.

Graduate Student Enhancement Grants

The Davis College is currently accepting applications for several Graduate Student Enhancement Grants for the Fall 2016 semester. Those currently available to eligible Davis College graduate students include: Stizel Graduate Student Support AGR, CoBank Graduate Student Travel Award, Robert H. Maxwell Memorial Travel Endowment, CAFCS International Account, Farm Credit Agriculture Graduate Student Fund, and Nath Graduate Student Travel.

Graduate Fellow (Ph.D.)

Fellowships are awarded on the basis of academic merit and require no service in return. Graduate fellows are expected to pursue their studies full-time, but they may teach to the extent that a particular degree program requires.