Resources and Advice

Mason will help you find graduate funding opportunities, prepare applications, and get the resources you need. 


Frequently Asked Questions:

What is a fellowship?

A fellowship is an external, nationally competitive award that is given to an individual student to support academic or professional endeavors. “External” means the funding does not come from Mason.

What kinds of fellowships can a graduate student apply to?

Graduate students can apply to fellowships that pay for tuition, research costs (including travel), stipend, and professional experiences like internships.

When can I apply to a graduate fellowship?

You can apply to a graduate fellowship when you are intending to enroll in graduate school OR when you are currently enrolled in a graduate program. Note that many graduate fellowships are for students at specific points in their program, such as when a PhD student advances to candidacy.

How long is the fellowship application process?

Most graduate fellowships work on a 6-12 month cycle, meaning you apply to the award at least 1 semester before you need the funding. With this timeline in mind, fellowships are not a good source for immediate funding in a financial crisis. For financial crisis assistance, please reach out to the Student Success and Advocacy Center.

We recommend you take at least 2 months to prepare a fellowship application.

Can I apply to graduate fellowships as an international student?

Yes! There are fellowships available to graduate international students. There are fewer opportunities for international students than for U.S. citizens, so it is important to begin the fellowship search early.

How can I write a strong fellowship application?

The most important thing is to read the fellowship application directions carefully to make sure you are eligible for the award and that you meet the selection criteria. Then:

1. Ask for recommendation letters early and talk to your faculty about the fellowship and why you are applying.

2. Be prepared to write multiple drafts of the application essays.

3. In your essays, state specific academic and professional goals, explaining how this fellowship will help you reach your goals.

4. Work with the Office of Fellowships! We are ready to use our expertise to help you create a great application.