PhD Level Funding

As a PhD student, funding is essential and can come from a variety of sources including assistantships, training grants and fellowships. Not all PhD students are fully funded and it's important to explore your funding options.

Find a Source of Funding

Assistantships and Traineeships

Graduate, teaching and research assistantships are offered each year in a competitive process to highly qualified PhD students. All full-time, fully funded PhD students on 10-month TA/RA/GA and 12-month appointments receive a minimum campus stipend. Read more about the PhD Excellence Initiative below.

Traineeships are supported by federal training grants from agencies like NIH and NSF, and typically include tuition/fee remission, stipend and health insurance. They are awarded upon admission to a doctoral program. To inquire about training grants, check with your graduate program.


Fellowships are grants that you do not have to pay back and generally involve no work obligations. There are both internal and external awards available.

Presidential, Graduate and Schomburg fellowships, listed below, are awarded in addition to any GA/RA/TA that is awarded.

Financial Aid

Students seeking financial aid to assist with educational costs should complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) annually. The FAFSA asks for general identification and income information to determine your eligibility for all financial aid programs sponsored by the federal government. Remember to add UB's Federal School Code (SUNY at Buffalo—002837).


Grants are an essential element and should be prioritized at every stage of your career, from your graduate program, to the job search and beyond. Not only do they provide the funds for your work and allow you to establish credibility within your field of study, but they look excellent on your CV. If you plan to stay in academia, remember that you will be writing grants throughout your career.


To help you meet the expenses of a graduate education, there are loan programs available. A loan is money that you borrow which must be repaid, often with interest. There are several kinds of loans available to graduate students.


UB's Scholarship Portal is a smart shortcut to apply for philanthropic scholarships. To access the portal and apply, you must be an enrolled student at the University at Buffalo. Log in and complete one application annually to be considered for multiple opportunities.

University-wide Awards

Arthur A. Schomburg Fellowship Program

The Arthur A. Schomburg (Schomburg) Fellowship is a graduate fellowship program for eligible underrepresented students who pursue graduate study on a full time basis at the University at Buffalo. The Schomburg fellowship is intended to support high achieving doctoral and professional students in pursuit of terminal degrees.

Graduate Opportunity Program (GOP)

The Graduate Opportunity Program (GOP) is a New York State-sponsored program for New York residents who are both academically and economically disadvantaged. State funding for this program is extremely limited.

The Graduate School Fellowship

The Graduate School Fellowship helps fund outstanding graduate students at UB. To be eligible, a nominee must be a new applicant to a PhD program and must be appointed as a full teaching, graduate or research assistant.

Presidential Fellowships

The Presidential Fellowship offers outstanding prospective graduate students an elite fellowship package to the top 10% incoming enrolled doctoral students each academic year. 

WNY Prosperity Fellowship

The Western New York (WNY) Prosperity Fellowship Program assists graduate students at UB with an entrepreneurial drive who are actively preparing for careers that further economic development and growth in the Western New York area.

PhD Excellence Initiative

The PhD Excellence Initiative is a multi-year program designed to enhance the education of the next generation of scholars and researchers through program reviews and creation of academic plans to ensure stronger outcomes. This initiative enables academic units to provide students with funding packages that are nationally competitive and will remain competitive over time. 

All full-time, fully funded PhD students on 10-month TA/RA/GA appointments receive a minimum of $23,000 for academic year stipends. Full-time, fully funded PhD students on 12-month appointments receive $29,900 as the campus minimum stipend.

The university will centrally fund comprehensive fees on a recurring basis for TA and GA appointments only.