Types of Funding: Fellowships


The Graduate School currently offers three fellowships for full-time study, each with a monthly stipend for the academic year, coverage of in-state tuition and remission of out-of-state tuition (for students who are not residents of the State of Wisconsin), a travel award, and eligibility for state-sponsored health insurance. Fellowship recipients are responsible for paying segregated fees.

Note: Graduate School fellowship stipends and tuition waivers count as financial aid.

Advanced Opportunity Program (AOP) Fellowship

The Advanced Opportunity Program (AOP) Fellowship is funded by the State of Wisconsin. AOP Fellowships are designed to assist underrepresented racial/ethnic minority as well as disadvantaged non-minority students in graduate study to enter and complete a graduate degree at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee (UWM). Awards are granted to newly admitted or currently enrolled UWM graduate students. Prospective graduate students may apply at time of graduate program application. AOP Fellowship applicants must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States.

The academic-year fellowship stipend for the 2022-2023 academic year is $15,000. Fellows receive full tuition coverage and are eligible for health benefits. In addition, AOP Fellows may benefit from a one time, non-renewable $1,000 travel award that will accompany each fellowship award, to be spent in accordance with UWM travel regulations. Funds must be spent on travel to present at a major national or international conference in the student’s discipline.

AOP Fellowships are renewable for a maximum of two academic years (or four AOP-funded semesters total) for Master’s students and three academic years (a maximum of six AOP-funded semesters) for PhD and MFA students. Renewal is contingent on meeting course and program requirements and level of academic progress toward degree as determined by each fellow’s advisor. No student may qualify for more than three years (six semesters) of combined support in their master’s and doctoral studies.

For questions regarding the AOP Fellowship, please email gs-fellowships-aop@uwm.edu.

Distinguished Dissertation Fellowship (DDF)

The Distinguished Dissertation Fellowship (DDF) is for current UWM PhD students who have either achieved dissertator status or will do so by the start of the academic year of the award. A DDF recipient who has not attained dissertator status by the start of the academic year forfeits the award. The DDF is a one-year, non-renewable fellowship. The academic-year fellowship stipend for 2022-23 is $16,500. Fellows receive full tuition coverage and are eligible for health benefits. In addition, recipients may benefit from a $1,000 travel award that will accompany each fellowship award. The money should be spent in accordance with UWM travel regulations by the end of the fiscal year following the year in which the fellowship award is held, but no later than the date of graduation. The money will be spent on travel to present at a major national or international conference in the student’s discipline.

For questions regarding the DDF Fellowship, please email gs-fellowships-distinguished@uwm.edu.

Distinguished Graduate Student Fellowship (DGSF)

The Distinguished Graduate Student Fellowship (DGSF) is for new and continuing UWM graduate students. The DGSF is a one-year, non-renewable fellowship. The academic-year stipend for 2022-23 is $15,000. Fellows receive full tuition coverage and are eligible for health benefits. In addition, Fellowship recipients may benefit from a $1,000 travel award that will accompany each fellowship award. The money should be spent in accordance with UWM travel regulations by the end of the fiscal year following the year in which the fellowship award is held. The money will be spent on travel to present at a major national or international conference in the student’s discipline. The DGSF is not open to doctoral students who will achieve dissertator status by the application deadline for the award.

For questions regarding the DGSF Fellowship, please email gs-fellowships-distinguished@uwm.edu.

There are also partial fellowships awarded which are one-time stipends.

Graduate Excellence Fellowship

The Graduate Student Excellence Fund was established in 2015 as a philanthropic effort to provide advanced degree students the support they need to pursue their research endeavors, complete their studies and share discoveries with others in their fields. Enthusiastic supporters of this fund represent myriad interests such as business, industry, law, medicine and public service.

Students do not apply for these fellowships. They are awarded on the basis of program faculty nomination combined with donor wishes.

For more information about the Graduate Excellence Fellowship, call 414-229-3108 or email gs-fellowships-philanthropic@uwm.edu.

McNair Graduate Entrance Fellowship (MGEF)

The UWM Graduate School offers a $3,000 McNair Graduate Entrance Fellowship, just for alumni of the Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program (McNair Scholars Program) who enroll full-time in a UWM master’s or PhD program for the current academic year. Any McNair Scholar/Alumni who applies to, is admitted to, and enrolls in a UWM graduate program automatically receives this award during their first term of study. The MGEF can be added to any other offered award though it cannot be used as a reimbursement and is non-transferrable. Eligibility is determined by the McNair Scholar/Alumni’s submission of a completed and signed COE McNair Fee Waiver form submitted with their UWM Graduate School application. Students do not apply for these fellowships; there is no application process outside of this determination of eligibility.