Awards and Funding
Funding for Incoming Students
Our Department can offer packages of up to five years of financial support. Usually we offer five. In any given year, students may be teaching assistants (assisting in philosophy courses and/or interdisciplinary humanities courses for which the philosophy department has a share of responsibility), or it may involve research or some other project. Bi-Weekly payments are subject to the collective bargaining agreement made between the university and the Graduate Employees Union. The benefits, all five years, include a tuition waiver of nine credits per semester, waiver of registration fees, and health insurance. (Any additional tuition fees are charged at the instate rate.) We also have a low number of Research Assistantships available that are not in all cases tied to teaching. Continuation of financial support is conditional on the candidate’s making timely progress, and continued eligibility for teaching opportunities requires adequate teaching performance.
Engaged Philosophy Internship Program (EPIP)
Due date: usually in December
The Engaged Philosophy Internship Program (EPIP) is intended to enable graduate students in the MSU Department of Philosophy obtain professional experience in a non-academic environment that contributes to their development as philosophical researchers. Consonant with the department’s mission, EPIP assumes that philosophers can engage as philosophers in addressing problems and concerns that confront people and communities outside the academy. EPIP seeks to provide graduate students with meaningful opportunities to develop their philosophical research skills and their professional networks in ways that could open alternate career paths for them to work as philosophers. Graduate students who participate in EPIP will work for at least six to eight weeks in the summer with a partner organization (e.g., a business, a government agency, an NGO) on a project or projects that takes advantage of their philosophical training. EPIP is for students who have demonstrable research training that will enable them to contribute to a partner organization and profit as researchers. These will be paid internships – they will not be associated with course credit. Through EPIP, MSU’s Department of Philosophy is hoping to change how the world views philosophy. More information can be found on CAL’s newspage and on the dedicated EPIP page (including information about recent projects and recipients, forthcoming). Also read Daily Nous on our program.
Community Engaged Philosophy of Language: Re-Visiting and Revitalizing Tribal Publications ‘atáaxum Pomtéelangax
Worked with: Avellaka Program, La Jolla Band of Luiseño Indians, Pauma Valley, CA
Interning with Girls for Gender Equity: Black Feminist Theory and Practice to Map Transformative Change
Worked with: Girls for Gender Equity, Brooklyn, NY
Bethany K. Laurse
Integration Sightings through Philosophical Lenses: Engaging socio-environmental synthesis at SESYNC
Worked with: Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC), Annapolis, MD
Cows, Fires, and Sagebrush: Re-conceiving Environmental Governance in the American West
Worked with: Shoesole Resource Management Group, Wells, NV
Picturing History: A Summer with the Mountain Legacy Project
Worked with: Mountain Legacy Project, University of Victoria, Victoria, British Columbia, Canada
Walking Among Black Bears: Reflections on Ethological Wisdom, Rehabilitation, and Multispecies Flourishing
Worked with: Kilham Bear Center, Lyme, NH
Memory and State violence in Nicaragua: Insights from two formative experiences with activist researchers
Worked with: IICS-UCA Instituto Interdiscipliario de Ciencias Sociales- Universidad Centroamericana, Managua, Nicaragua, and Self-convened memory group, León, Nicaragua
Lived Experience in Dialogue: The Open Dialogue Approach to Early Psychosis
Worked with: Rebecca Hatton/Open Dialogue, Ann Arbor, MI
Engaged Philosophy at the Library: Structural Competency as Professional Ethics at UNC Libraries
Worked with: University of North Carolina — Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC
Enjinaaknegeng: An Introduction to Engaged Philosophy of Law & Policy
Worked with: Little Traverse Bay Bands of Odawa Indians Legal Department, Harbor Springs, MI
Lights, Camera, Action: Philosophical Discourse and Praxis in the Digital Age
Worked with: Project Rebound, CSUF, Fullerton, CA
Broader Impact Fellows (BIF)
Funding: $3,000 (up to 3 awards)
Due date: usually in April
The Broader Impacts Fellowship (BIF) will support graduate student research endeavors, academic projects, and educational opportunities that fall under the domain of engaged philosophy. Projects that support and expand the department’s strengths in Philosophy of Medicine, Philosophy and Ethics of Healthcare, Neuroethics, Philosophy of Science, Philosophy of Technology, Environmental Philosophy, and Social & Political Philosophy are strongly encouraged and will be prioritized during the review process. Potential projects include writing research papers, co-authoring research papers, organizing grad student led conferences and symposia, engaging in collaborative projects, building relationships with communities, thinkers, or stakeholders relevant to the applicant’s research, etc. Up to three BIFs will be granted by the Philosophy Department each year. The award is competitive.
Topic: Critical mental health disciplines
Blake Ginsburg, Nic Cottone, Chase Halsne
Topic: Trauma and trauma-informed pedagogy
Philosophy Scholar Summer Fellowship
Funding: $2,000 (student); $750 (faculty)
Due date: usually in April
The Philosophy Department awards up to two fellowships to graduate students so that they can work closely with a faculty member to revise and polish a paper for publication. The funds will be available in the summer.
Paper: The Ethosophy of the Grizzly Man: Timothy Treadwell’s Three Ethologies”
Faculty Mentor: Kyle Whyte
Paper: PredPol: Predictive Policing or Predatory Policing? Moves to Innocence Through the Commercialization of Algorithms and the Commodification of Racism and Classism
Faculty Mentor: Heather Douglas
Paper: Critiquing Gray Rape as Contradictory.
Faculty Mentor: Lisa Schwartzman
Paper: Intersectionality Across Colonial Borders: What pregnancy related and Perinatal Health Surveillance In Canada Tells Us About Canadian Racism
Faculty Mentor: Robyn Bluhm
Paper: “Critical Theory and Automation from Pollock to Postone”
Faculty Mentor: Christian Lotz
The Charles McCracken 1965-1999 Memorial Award
Funding: $250Due date: usually in December The Charles McCracken 1965-1999 Memorial Award is given for the best seminar paper submitted to a seminar during the spring or fall semester of the calendar year of the award. Eligible graduate students are in their first or second year during the award year. A student may submit no more than one paper per award. Students are encouraged to consider submitting the winning paper or a version of it at a conference shortly after the award period.
Paper: Can States be Barbaric? Discerning Civil Conditions from the State of Nature
Paper: Automation and the Crisis of Value in the Grundrisse: Marx’s “Fragment on Machines” Reconsidered
Paper: Freud and the Politics of Lamarckian Inheritance
Degree Completion Fellowship (DCF)
Due date: usually in February
This fellowship provides a stipend of $10,000 to support the student in their final semester towards the degree. This fellowship from the GradSchool does not come with health care or a credit waiver. The college currently provides up to $1,000 for health care support and offers 1 credit waiver. Students who receive financial aid need to pro-actively make sure with the proper MSU offices that the DCF does not interfere with their financial aid. More information about health insurance can be found here: https://hr.msu.edu/benefits/students/health/index.html
Summer Support Fellowships
Due date: usually in March
With support from with the Graduate School, the College of Arts & Letters makes summer funding available in the form of Summer Support Fellowships. These awards go to students to support scholarship and creative activity that enhances degree progress.
Funding: bi-weekly stipends for the entire Summer
Due date: usually in Fall
Students can either teach brick & mortar classes or sign up for online teaching. In some cases, employment is contingent on meeting enrollment minima (5 students for graduate courses; 10 students for 300-400-level courses; 15 students for 100-200 level courses). In some cases, the minimum number may be higher to meet the cost of delivering the course.
Basic Needs Fellowship
Due date: ongoing
In the event that a graduate student is assigned to teach a class and it is canceled (e.g., due to low enrollment), the student will be eligible to apply for a $750 teaching supplement, which will be matched by the department ($1,500 total).
Summer College Research Abroad Monies (SCRAM)
Due date: usually in February
The College of Arts & Letters offers fellowships up to $3,000 each intended for students in the latter stages of degree completion whose research requires significant use of facilities, sources, or resources abroad.
Due date: ongoing, last due date: March
The College of Arts & Letters provides up to $350 per graduate student per year toward expenses of travel to conferences: Travel Funding Guidelines. The philosophy department usually matched the amount that the college gives. Students can apply for up to $600 from the GradSchool for the entire time of a student’s career.
Varg-Sullivan Awards (VSA)
Funding and due date: check the fellowship web page of the college
Paul Varg and Richard Sullivan are former Deans of the College of Arts & Letters who dedicated their professional lives to excellence in the College. This award endowment was established in their name. Graduate students in the College of Arts & Letters are eligible to be nominated for the award by their major unit. Recipients are selected based on best performance/exhibition at a national or international event in the Arts and best presentation at a national or international event or best published article in the Letters.
GradSchool Emergency Fellowships
Funding: up to $3,000
Due date: ongoing
A brief statement (1,000 words maximum) that includes an explanation of the unusual or unforeseen expenses; the total dollar amount of funding that is being requested; a description of the student’s financial situation; and other avenues that have been explored for possible funding. A budget detailing the amount of funding requested that includes a list of current expenses as well as a description of how the Emergency Fellowship Funding will be used. A statement from the student’s major professor indicating that the student is making satisfactory progress towards their degree in a graduate program. If the student feels comfortable sharing information pertaining to their situation with their major professor, they may do so. This information can also be included in the major professor’s statement. Optional: Applicants have the option of including other supporting documents with their application (e.g., bills, receipts, etc.) PLEASE NOTE: If you have federal loans or other needs-based loans/aid, the amount of your fellowship award may cause a reduction of your loan(s) or other financial aid. You may still wish to consider the fellowship as this will most likely reduce your total loan debt at graduation. Please seek advice from your Office of Financial Aid Counselor before you turn down a fellowship: Form.
Center for Gender in Global Context
GenCen offers a variety of funding opportunities for graduate students, including dissertation fellowships, travel funding, and teaching fellowships. The GenCen also offers one paper competition for graduate students annually. More information can be found here.
Forms and Fellowships
- Funding resources & fellowships: College of Arts and Letters
- Funding resources: Graduate School
- Forms: Graduate School
Other Resources for External Funding
- Funding Resource Guide from the MSU Libraries
- Funding resources for international students
- External funding resources from the Graduate School
- Best practices (CV, narratives, etc.) from the Graduate School: https://grad.msu.edu/phdcareers