Section X: Financial Support

Basic Graduate School policies are stated in Section IX (Graduate Associates) and Section X (Graduate Fellowships) of the Graduate School Handbook, and in publications from the Office of International Education and English as a Second Language Programs.  Information is also included in Appendix C of this Handbook (Policies Related to Graduate Associates).

It is the philosophy of the faculty and the Graduate Studies Committee that, whenever fiscally possible, all doctoral students actively studying in the MCDB Program should be provided with financial support by either the Program or by their research advisor.  Consequently, admission depends in part upon the availability of support for the incoming student.  MCDB students are normally supported as Graduate Research Associates (GRAs) or Graduate Fellows.

Graduate Research Associates

Most first year MCDB students are supported as Graduate Research Associates (GRAs) by the program.  A GRA carries a stipend of $2,298 per month ($27,576 annually) for the 2015-2016 academic year. 

GRAs are accompanied by tuition and fee authorizations, the value of which exceeds $2,200 per semester for Ohio Residents and $5,700 per semester for Non-Residents for the 2015-2016 academic year.  Other non-optional fees (which must be paid by the student) are the Central Ohio Transit Authority (COTA) fee, currently $9 per semester for a special unlimited city bus pass, the student activity fee (maximum of $25), facility fee (maximum of $50/semester), and the student recreation fee ($82 - 4 or more credit hours).  All students must purchase health insurance unless they can document that insurance is available from another source.  Other fees, such as parking, late penalties, etc., are the student’s responsibility.  Graduate Associates are also eligible for staff parking and faculty/staff library privileges. 

GRA appointments are for 50% time. Students are not permitted to hold other jobs while on appointment.  Renewal is dependent upon satisfactory performance. 

After the first year, most program students are supported by their research advisor's research grants as Graduate Research Associates.  Students are responsible for obtaining information concerning policies that may apply to employees of grant-funded research activities. 

Graduate Teaching Associates

After the first year, some students may be supported as Graduate Teaching Associates (GTAs), if their research advisor has access to such positions.  These carry the same stipend and fee authorizations as Graduate Research Associateships. 

Students who desire teaching experience to enrich their graduate training may request program assistance in obtaining a GTA position.

Fellowships and Supplemental support

Outstanding incoming students are eligible for University Fellowships, which MCDB supplements to equal the program standard stipend amount.  Most Fellows are exempt from teaching and service during the term of the award.

In order to be eligible for University Fellowships, complete applications must be received by the deadline specified by Graduate Admissions, currently November 30th for international applicants and December 13th for domestic applicants.  The applicant must request fellowship consideration by checking the appropriate box on the admission application.  Outstanding applicants are nominated by the Graduate Studies Committee.

First year and more senior students may also be eligible for appointment as Fellows on any of several NIH-funded Training Grants with which the MCDB program is associated.  Outstanding first year students are nominated by the MCDB Graduate Studies Committee.  Senior students are nominated by their research advisors.

Several other internal fellowships are available to outstanding senior students (usually post-candidacy).  These include Pelotonia Fellowships sponsored by the OSU Comprehensive Cancer Center, and RNA Fellowships sponsored by the OSU Center for RNA Biology.

Post-candidacy students nearing the end of their training may be eligible for a Presidential Fellowship, administered by the Graduate School.  Students must be nominated by the MCDB Graduate Studies Committee.

Jeffrey J. Seilhamer Fellowship

The Jeffrey J. Seilhamer Cancer Foundation provides the MCDB program with support for a fellowship.   Dr. Seilhamer received his Ph.D. from MCDB in 1979.  After his untimely passing in 2003, the Foundation established the fellowship in his name.  Awarded annually to a post-candidacy MCDB student who has demonstrated exceptional promise in research, the fellowship recognizes outstanding student achievement and honors the memory of one of our program's first and most successful graduates. 



Rev: August 19, 2015