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Graduate Research Scholar (GRS) Fellowships and Communities

Information on the administration of the GRS Fellowships and Communities.


Graduate Research Scholar Fellowships are intended to support the recruitment and retention of highly qualified underrepresented students in UW–Madison graduate programs 

Fellowship Administration

The UW System sets the eligibility criteria for the Advanced Opportunity Program and provides funding to the UW–Madison Graduate School to distribute to UW–Madison Schools and Colleges via the Graduate Research Scholar (GRS) Communities. All graduate programs belong to one of eight GRS Communities in the following units: Business, CALS/SMPH/Vet Med/Pharmacy/Nursing, Education, Engineering, Human Ecology, Letters and Science, and the Nelson Institute. Within each GRS Community, GRS Directors and Coordinators work with faculty representing academic programs to award the GRS funding and to create communities of scholars for the purposes of academic and professional development, mentoring, networking, and other community-building activities. GRS Communities have authority within their programs to set policies related to the fellowship award process and timeline, the fellowship terms, participation in community activities, and other responsibilities of fellows Graduate programs and departments should consult with their GRS Community about all policies and procedures related to the GRS Fellowships.

GRS Eligibility Criteria

GRS Fellowships are competitive and merit-based. At a minimum, to be considered for GRS funding, students must be United States citizens or permanent residents and be admissible to a graduate program at the University of Wisconsin–Madison (students on probation cannot receive GRS funding.) Beyond merit, preference is given to Wisconsin residents. Applicants should meet one or more of the following criteria:

  1. McNair students: students who participated in a Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program; AND/OR

  2. Students from the following racial/ethnic groups: a) African American or Black; b) American Indian or Alaskan Native; c) Hispanic/Latino; d) Cambodian, Vietnamese, Laotian, or Hmong; e) Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander; AND/OR

  3. Economically disadvantaged students: a) first-generation college students who participated in one of the following TRIO programs: Upward Bound, Talent Search, Educational Opportunities Centers, or Student Support Services; b) first-generation college students who graduated from the PEOPLE Program; or c) UW–Madison bachelor's degree recipients who were in the FASTrack or BANNER programs.

Incoming students who are GRS-eligible will be identified in the Application Review System once the student has been fully admitted to UW-Madison Graduate School. Incoming students are eligible to be nominated for the fellowship if the academic program believes the student would find the GRS cohort-based experience valuable. Graduate programs who wish to nominate a student for a GRS Fellowship should consult with their GRS Community regarding the timeline and process for nominations, offers, and awards.

GRS Fund Usage

GRS support comes from two separate sources - state allocations from the UW-System (403 funds) and Graduate School matching funds (135 funds). All 403 and 135 funds allocated annually to the GRS communities must be spent directly on student support in the form of fellowships. Support for recruitment and retention activities must come from funds provided by the Schools/Colleges that are members of the GRS community.
GRS fellowships may offer two years of support. If offering two years of support, the second year of fellowship usage can only be activated after the student attains dissertator status or is in the final year of their MFA program.

Keywordsfellowships advanced opportunity graduate research scholar communities grs   Doc ID33338
OwnerAbbey T.GroupGraduate School
Created2013-09-12 13:02:22Updated2024-03-19 15:21:02
SitesGraduate School
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