Graduate Dean's Award | Graduate Studies | Kent State University

Graduate Dean's Award

Through the Graduate Dean's Award (GDA), Graduate Studies works in partnership with units to promote graduate education characterized by diversity in views, experiences, and ideas in the pursuit of research, scholarship, and creative excellence. The GDA seeks to enhance Kent State University's recruitment and support of academically excellent students with diverse backgrounds.

The GDA supplements stipends offered by an applicant's graduate programs. Graduate programs are expected to provide a full-time (20 hour per week) assistantship for two years (contingent upon the student making satisfactory progress towards his/her degree), and Graduate Studies will augment the assistantship stipend. 

Up to ten (10) GDAs will be made available each year. The total award for each recipient is $5,000 to be distributed over two academic years (four consecutive semesters at $1,250 per semester). Award recipients in one-year master's programs will receive $2,500 (two consecutive semesters at $1,250 per semester). No service or duties beyond those required by the assistantship are expected of GDA recipients.   

GDA's are awarded to programs for specific applicants and are not transferable to other applicants. Should the nominee decline the offer of admission, or should a student holding a GDA graduate from or leave his/her program with supplement funding remaining, unused funds will be returned to the award pool in Graduate Studies.

The GDA will not be continued beyond the original 2-year award period. 

2015 GDA Recipients (PDF)

2014 GDA Recipients (PDF)

2013 GDA Recipients (PDF)

2012 GDA Recipients (PDF)


To be eligible for nomination by the program, a nominee must be:

  • An applicant to a master's or doctoral degree program. Current students and applicants to non-degree, guest and certificate programs are not eligible;  
  • A U.S. citizen (or national) or a permanent resident of the U.S; and
  • A member of an underrepresented group in their discipline (e.g., women in traditionally male-dominated disciplines, McNair Scholars, individuals with disabilities, ethnic/racial minorities). 


To nominate an applicant, the program should complete the Nomination form. Nominations include:

  • An assurance that if the applicant accepts the offer of admission, the program will provide a full-time (20 hour per week) graduate assistantship stipend for two years (contingent upon satisfactory progress towards the degree); and
  • A brief description of how the applicant would contribute to the diversity of the discipline (including supporting data).
  • The priority deadline for nominations is March 1, but nominations will be accepted as long as funds are available. 
  • Please submit the nomination form and any supporting materials to Tiffany Lewis at

Graduate Dean's Award Nomination Form

Selection Process

Program nominations will be reviewed by a committee consisting of the Dean of Graduate Studies, the Director of Graduate Student Services, and members of the Graduate Studies Administrative Advisory Committee (GSAAC). In addition to the nomination form, the selection committee will review the nominee's admissions materials (e.g., GPA, GRE scores, letters of recommendation).  

Award recipients will be identified by March 15, and programs will notify Joelle Bettura by April 15 as to whether or not the recipient accepted the offer. If an offer is declined, the selection committee will review nominations (including those submitted after the March 1 deadline) to identify alternate award recipients.