Fellowships

 

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What do I need? Graduate Student Fellowship Application Materials Checklist

 

We are excited you are interested in graduate fellowships from the University of Kentucky. We are in the process of updating fellowship information for the 2024-2025 academic year. We will be updating that information as soon as possible, which you will be able to find here. Please check back at this site before upcoming deadlines for the latest information. 


Several fellowship opportunities are available through the Graduate School for students enrolled and seeking a degree in one of our many graduate departments.  These fellowships each have different purposes and eligibility criteria, so you will want to read through the information below carefully. For some fellowships, you must be nominated by your DGS. You will need to contact them to fill out the DGS Nomination Form that you will upload as a part of your application. Links to DGS Nomination form templates for each DGS-Nominated Fellowship can be found below in the descriptions for each of those fellowships.

 

For fellowships that include a tuition scholarship, the standard graduate tuition and all mandatory fees are covered. They do not include student specific fees, such as lab fees, course fees, program fees, music fees, distance learning course fees, or tuition charges above and beyond the standard graduate rate.

 

Note: All applicants must be accepted by their program and The Graduate School and have an activated LinkBlue ID and @uky.edu email address to apply for any fellowship. LinkBlue IDs are provided in students' Graduate School admission letter. Applicants should expect at minimum one week between program admission and admission to the Graduate School, provided they meet the admission standards (Note: International Students take longer to process).

 

All communications (including award notices) from the Office of Finance, Funding & Analytics will be sent to student's @uky.edu email address. 

 

Students who are awarded a fellowship should be aware that fellowship stipends (as well as any tuition scholarships that accompany fellowships) will affect eligibility for state and federal financial aid funds, see: https://www.uky.edu/financialaid/overaward-policy . Students who expect to receive financial aid should contact their financial aid counselor to find out what impact a fellowship award will have on an aid package before accepting the fellowship. Persons having UK employment of 0.75 FTE or higher (considered a full time UK employee), whether it is from one payroll assignment or total combined assignments, are not eligible for Graduate School Fellowship or for Assistantships. The Graduate School reserves the right to rescind any fellowship award if the awardee is found to have 0.75 FTE or higher employment at UK at any time during the award period.

 

Send questions to the Funding Office at grad.fellowships@uky.edu or call 859-257-3261.

 

Recent Fellowship Winners

 

Self-Nominating Competitive Fellowships

Association of Emeriti Faculty Endowed Fellowship

Applications Open: August 14, 2023          Application Deadline: October 18, 2023

 

Matthews/Singletary/Wethington Fellowships (First-Year Students Only)

Applications Open: January 2, 2024          Application Deadline: March 30, 2024

 

Lyman T. Johnson Fellowship (First-Year Students Only)

Applications Open: January 22, 2024         Application Deadlines: Rolling; reviews begin February 15 and end April 15

 

DGS-Nominated Competitive Fellowships

Note: Each DGS-Nominated fellowship will require a separate DGS Nomination form to be completed. A link to each form can be found after the description of each fellowship.

Lexmark Fellowship

Applications Open: August 14, 2023          Application Deadline: October 18, 2023

Presidential Graduate Fellowship

Applications Open: January 2, 2024          Application Deadline: February 2, 2024

James Still Fellowship (First-Year Students Only)

Applications Open: January 2, 2024          Application Deadline: March 30, 2024

Cralle Foundation/Joan Cralle Day Fellowship (First-Year Students Only)

Applications Open: January 2, 2024          Application Deadline: March 30, 2024

Northern KY/Greater Cincinnati UK Alumni Club Fellowship

Applications Open: January 2, 2024          Application Deadline: March 30, 2024

McNair Fellowship (First-Year Students Only)

Applications Open: January 2, 2024          Application Deadline: March 30, 2024

 

DGS Allocated Fellowships

Max Steckler Fellowship

 

Other Fellowships

The following fellowships are available from individual programs. These are not administered by the Graduate School. You may wish to contact your DGS for additional fellowship opportunities.

James S. Brown Graduate Grants for Research on Appalachia

Margaret Ingels Society of Women Engineers Graduate Fellowship

Spencer Dissertation Fellowship for Research Related to Education

 

The Kentucky Graduate Internship

Summer fellowship of up to $5,000, to support a student in an unpaid or underpaid internship in a career direction that is related to their research but is not within academia, nor in the field that is a typical career outcome for that degree program.

Eligibility: PhD students who have passed their qualifying exams and have completed no less than three years, and no more than six, towards the PhD. Applications from advanced MFA students will also be considered. 

Internships should be external to UK, and should be at least partially in-person, working with a company or organization operating within the Commonwealth of Kentucky.

Application:

  • An essay explaining how the work relates to the applicant's degree and aligns with their career interests.
  • A letter from the internship supervisor explaining the duties.
  • A letter from the DGS that affirms the student's good standing in the program; the DGS should also indicate the professional enhancement activities that the applicant has engaged in.

Students will complete an internship agreement, kept on file in their program. Recipients submit two reports - one at 4-6 weeks, and one upon completion of the internship, discussing the work and describing how it has helped them develop new skills and career-relevant experiences.

Deadline: April 1; applications will be considered early as necessary (i.e. if internship supervisor requires an early decision). Interested students should consult with the Graduate School's Office of Professional Enhancement and/or the Stuckert Career Center for guidance. 


Fellowship Descriptions

Association of Emeriti Faculty Endowed Fellowships

For Currently Enrolled Graduate Students

Applications Open: Monday, August 14, 2023
Application Deadline: Wednesday, October 18, 2023
Amount: $2,500

Students are invited to apply for fellowships offered by the University of Kentucky Association of Emeriti Faculty, in conjunction with the Graduate School. These awards are made possible by generous donations from UK emeriti faculty members as well as support from the Research Challenge Trust Fund. These fellowships express the commitment of emeriti faculty to the preparation of outstanding future college and university teachers.

Criteria for Eligibility:

  • Currently enrolled, full-time, fully admitted Ph.D., Ed.D., or D.M.A. students
  • At least two semesters completed in current Graduate School academic program
  • Preparing for career in college/university teaching

Charles T. Wethington, Jr./W.L. Matthews Jr./Otis A. Singletary Fellowships for Graduate or Professional Study

For First Year Graduate Students and Professional Students

Applications Open: Tuesday, January 2, 2024
Application Deadline: Saturday, March 30, 2024

Fellowship    Amount
Wethington    $20,000
Matthews    $12,000
Singletary    $20,000 (plus a tuition scholarship and student health plan enrollment for students enrolled in Graduate School)
Note:  Only one nomination is required to apply for all three fellowships.  The selection committee will decide the award recipients for each fellowship from the pool of applicants.

Criteria for Eligbility:

  • UK seniors, having graduated at the end of the fall semester, or expecting to graduate by the end of the spring semester or the second summer session.
  • No previous enrollment in a graduate or professional program
  • Must be admitted to a graduate or professional program
  • Demonstration of high academic achievement in an undergraduate program of study at the University of Kentucky
  • Evidence of participation and leadership roles in university and community life during undergraduate study
Charles T. Wethington Jr. Fellowship

In honor of Charles T. Wethington Jr., the president of the University of Kentucky from 1989 to 2001, the University will annually provide funding for fellowships up to $20,000 to be awarded to UK graduating seniors who plan to continue their post-baccalaureate education in one of the University's graduate or professional programs. The fellowships will be awarded for the first year of graduate or professional study at UK and are not renewable for subsequent years. Preference will be given to Kentucky residents and first-generation college students.

W.L. Matthews Jr. Fellowship

The Board of Directors of the University of Kentucky Athletics Association has established quasi-endowment funds in memory of W.L. Matthews Jr.  The funds will provide annually for $12,000 fellowships to be awarded to UK graduating seniors who plan to continue their post-baccalaureate education in one of the University’s graduate or professional programs. The fellowships will be awarded for a first year of graduate or professional study at UK and are not renewable for subsequent years.

Otis A. Singletary Fellowship 

The Board of Directors of the University of Kentucky Athletics Association has established quasi-endowment funds in honor of Otis A. Singletary. The funds will provide annually for $20,000 fellowships to be awarded to UK graduating seniors who plan to continue their post-baccalaureate education in one of the University’s graduate or professional programs. The fellowships will be awarded for a first year of graduate or professional study at UK and are not renewable for subsequent years.  Recipients enrolled in graduate (not professional) programs will also be eligible for a tuition scholarship and health plan enrollment.


Cralle Foundation/Joan Cralle Day Fellowship

For First Year Graduate Students & Professional Students
Applications Open: Tuesday, January 2, 2024
Application Deadline: Saturday, March 30, 2024
Amount: $20,000, plus a tuition scholarship and student health plan enrollment (students in Professional programs will not receive tuition or health plan enrollment)

Endowed by a gift from the Cralle Foundation, named to honor Joan Cralle Day, the Cralle Foundation/Joan Cralle Day Fellowship is available for graduate or professional study at the University of Kentucky for an entering student who is a graduate of one of the 18 four-year independent colleges and universities in the Commonwealth affiliated with the Association of Independent Kentucky Colleges and Universities. The eligible independent institutions are: Alice Lloyd College, Asbury University, Bellarmine University, Berea College, Brescia University, Campbellsville University, Centre College, Georgetown College, Kentucky Christian University, Kentucky Wesleyan College, Lindsey Wilson College, Midway University, Spalding University, Thomas More University, Transylvania University, Union College, University of the Cumberlands, and University of Pikeville.  Preference will be given to candidates graduating from Bellarmine University, Georgetown College, Lindsey Wilson College, or University of the Cumberlands. Candidates must be nominated by their baccalaureate institutions. Applicants will enter the name of the Chief Academic Officer (or equivalent) of their undergraduate institution and that individual will receive an email asking them to provide more information about the candidate.

Criteria for Eligibility:

  • Senior at one of the 18 four-year independent colleges and universities in Kentucky, as listed above.
  • Enrolling for their first term of study in the program in an upcoming summer session or the upcoming fall semester
  • Undergraduate grade point average of 3.2 or above

Cralle Foundation/Joan Cralle Day Fellowship - DGS Nomination Form


James Still Fellowship for Graduate Study in the Humanities and Social Sciences

For First Year Graduate Students
Applications Open: Tuesday, January 2, 2024
Application Deadline: Saturday, March 30, 2024
Amount: $20,000, plus a tuition scholarship and student health plan enrollment

Endowed by a gift from the Bingham Fund and named to honor author James Still, the James Still Fellowship is available for graduate study in the humanities and social sciences at the University of Kentucky for an entering graduate student who graduated from a private college in Central Appalachia. Non-traditional students and those with financial need (as demonstrated in the student statement) are encouraged to apply.

Criteria for Eligibility:

  • Graduate from a private college in the Central Appalachian region (for a list of qualifying counties, please refer to the Appalachian Regional Commission website at https://www.arc.gov/counties)
  • Must be enrolling for their first term of study in a graduate program in the humanities or social sciences
  • Undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 or above
  • Graduate grade point average of 3.2 or above on any previous graduate work

James Still Fellowship for Graduate Study in the Humanities and Social Sciences - DGS Nomination Form

Note to Directors of Graduate Studies:  Programs may submit two nominations for the James Still Fellowship.


Lexmark Fellowship

See eligible programs below
Applications Open: Monday, August 14, 2023
Application Deadline: Wednesday, October 18, 2023
Amount: $7500 stipend, plus a spring tuition scholarship, and student health plan enrollment

Endowed by the Lexmark Corporation, the Lexmark Graduate Fellowship is a $7,500 award designed to assist students who are pursuing graduate degrees in Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or Computer Science. The fellowship carries a tuition scholarship for the upcoming spring term and student health plan enrollment.

Criteria for Eligibility:

  • Candidates must be nominated by the program's director of graduate studies.
  • Candidates may be enrolling for their first term of study or may be currently enrolled graduate students.
  • Candidates must be pursuing a graduate degree in Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, or Computer Science.
  • Candidates must have an undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 or above.
  • Candidates must have a graduate grade point average of 3.5 or above on any previous graduate work.
  • Awards will be made based on academic achievement.
  • New students applying to a program whose most recent degree is from a college or university outside of the U.S. are ineligible.
  • All nominees must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the U.S.

Lexmark Fellowship - DGS Nomination Form


UK McNair Fellowship

For First Year Graduate Students
Applications Open: Tuesday, January 2, 2024
Application Deadline: Saturday, March 30, 2024
Amount: $20,000, plus a tuition scholarship and student health plan enrollment

The McNair Program was named in honor of Ronald E. McNair, the African-American astronaut who died in the 1986 explosion of the space shuttle Challenger. Incoming UK graduate students who participated in the McNair program are eligible to be nominated for this competitive fellowship.

Participating McNair Programs

Criteria for Eligibility:

  • Participated in the McNair Scholarship Program at their undergraduate institution
  • Acceptance to the UK Graduate School—professional programs not eligible
  • Enrolling for their first term of study in the program in an upcoming summer session or the upcoming fall semester
  • No previous graduate or professional degrees from UK
  • Undergraduate grade point average of 3.2 or above

UK McNair Fellowship - DGS Nomination Form

Note to Directors of Graduate Studies:  Programs may submit two nominations for the McNair Fellowship.


Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati UK Alumni Club Fellowship

For First Year or Continuing Graduate Students
Applications Open: Tuesday, January 2, 2024
Application Deadline: Saturday, March 30, 2024
Amount: $5,000 for fall term

Endowed by a gift from the Northern Kentucky Greater Cincinnati UK Alumni Club, this fellowship will be given to support a full-time, degree seeking graduate student who graduated from a high school, or was home-schooled, in the club area (Kentucky counties of Boone, Campbell, Gallatin, Grant and Kenton; and Ohio counties of Hamilton, Clermont and a portion of Butler County, which includes the geographic area comprised of Zip Codes 45014, 45025, 45026, 45061, and 45071). Preference will be given to residents of Northern Kentucky (as defined above) and students who are considered in-state residents.

Criteria for Eligibility:

  • Undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 or above
  • Graduate grade point average of 3.2 or above on any previous graduate work
  • Residency as defined above (county residency will be determined by the high school from which the student graduated)

Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati UK Alumni Club Fellowship - DGS Nomination Form

Note to Directors of Graduate Studies: Programs may submit two nominations for the Northern Kentucky/Greater Cincinnati UK Alumni Club Fellowship. 


Presidential Graduate Fellowship

For Currently Enrolled Graduate Students
Applications Open: Tuesday, January 2, 2024
Application Deadline: Friday, February 2, 2024
Amount: $20,000, plus a tuition scholarship and student health plan enrollment

The Presidential Fellowship is available for a continuing student who demonstrates outstanding academic merit and research capabilities in their field of study.  Students enrolling for their first term of study in the fall semester are not eligible for this fellowship.

Criteria for Eligibility:

  • Currently enrolled in a UK graduate program
  • Graduate grade point average of 3.7 or above for each institution at which you have been enrolled

Presidential Fellowship - DGS Nomination Form

Note to Directors of Graduate Studies:  Programs may submit two nominations for the Presidential Fellowship.


Max Steckler Fellowship

Thanks to a generous bequest from the estate of Max Steckler, seven graduate programs have funding available for doctoral students selected by their program. The programs are: Biomedical Engineering, Biochemistry, Business Administration, Chemistry, Economics, Mathematics, and Physics. Please contact the DGS of one of these programs for more information.


Lyman T. Johnson Fellowship

For Incoming First-Year Students
Applications Open: January 22, 2024
Application Deadline: Rolling; reviews begin February 15 and end April 15

Amount: Academic year (Fall-Spring) stipend of $20,000 (PhD) or $10,000 (Masters), plus a standard graduate tuition scholarship (does not cover all course, lab, instrument and distance learning fees). Student health plan enrollment is provided for all recipients.

Lyman T. Johnson was the first Black student to enroll as a graduate student at the University of Kentucky in 1949 after a successful legal challenge. He embodied a courage in pursuit of scholarship and development that continues to inspire all who work and study at UK. In his honor, the Lyman T. Johnson (LTJ) Fellowship is available for students entering one of the many programs at the University of Kentucky Graduate School. Applicants must describe, in an essay, how their pursuit of graduate education reflects the values of the fellowship's namesake. The application must be accompanied by the support of the program's Director of Graduate Studies. Awards are highly competitive, as we receive many more applications than can be funded each year.

You can find a more in-depth biography about Lyman T. Johnson and his legacy here: https://oid.uky.edu/legacy-lyman-t-johnson

PhD students who receive an LTJ Fellowship are eligible to apply for a second year of funding for completion of the dissertation. An application is required, and recipients must have maintained a minimum 3.2 GPA, be making good progress toward their degree and have participated in appropriate professional development activities. An LTJ recipient may apply in their 3rd, 4th, or 5th year (for year 4, 5, or 6). Students are expected to complete their dissertation in the fellowship year, and so will ordinarily not receive any subsequent support.

Masters students are eligible for one year of support only.

Criteria for Eligibility:

New students must be admitted to both the Graduate School and an academic program and have an activated LinkBlue and UK email address before they can apply. Applications will be evaluated based on holistic, individualized assessment of each applicant, including:

  • The applicant's response to the essay prompt
  • Leadership experience, extracurricular activities, awards and recognition, and/or community service, as evidenced in the applicant's c.v. or other materials
  • Academic preparation and promise
  • Letters of recommendation

Students must apply for the LTJ through the Graduate School Fellowship Portal. Students' application will include:

  • Two letters of recommendation (please provide email addresses for two recommenders; these may be letters used for the original application to the program)
  • A copy of the unofficial transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions attended
  • A resume or Curriculum Vitae
  • A brief essay on how the applicant's pursuit of graduate education reflects the values of the fellowship's namesake
  • The name and email of the student’s Director of Graduate Studies, who will receive an email from the fellowship application system to provide an assessment of the student's potential to succeed in their program