We are committed to making your graduate education affordable, and we offer generous scholarships, fellowships, and assistantships to many of our students. Read below to find out more detailed information on the ways Penn GSE provides various forms of funding to our master's and doctoral students.

Master's Students

Full-time, traditional master's students may be eligible to receive financial assistance from Penn GSE in a variety of ways. Review the details of the funding opportunities below.

Penn GSE Merit-Based Scholarships

Penn GSE merit scholarships provide partial tuition support to full-time students in their first year of study at the master's level. The School seeks to provide assistance to as many eligible candidates as possible, currently awarding scholarships to approximately 75% of incoming master’s students. These Penn GSE scholarships are awarded to both domestic and international students, and there is no application to be considered for these.  

All scholarships are based on merit as shown by the strength of your application. The awards are made at the time of application review by the academic divisions and are based on the academic merit of the application for admission. Awards are communicated at the time of admission in the acceptance letter. Scholarships are not taxable and require no service components. Scholarships are disbursed evenly in the fall and spring semesters only. 

Need-Based Assistance

Penn GSE offers U.S. Citizens and Permanent Residents the opportunity to apply for a need-based scholarship by completing a survey in the application for admission. To be considered for this scholarship, students must be applying for full-time study to an eligible master’s program*. Need-based scholarships are assessed independently from merit-based scholarships and can be combined with other awards up to the cost of tuition. Need-based scholarships will provide partial tuition support. Applicants will be reviewed for need-based scholarships at the time of application and will be notified of their eligibility at the time of admission in their decision letter.

*Executive-Style Programs are not eligible for need-based aid except for the School and Mental Health Counseling program. 

Dean’s Fellowship: Power of Possibility

Penn GSE has a deep commitment to fostering a diverse community of scholars and expanding educational access to all students. Towards this end, Penn GSE offers the Dean’s Fellowship: Power of Possibility to a number of our incoming master’s students, with special consideration given to students from diverse backgrounds and from communities that are underrepresented or under-served. Students will be automatically considered for these prestigious half-tuition awards at the time of application review; there is no additional application process. Both domestic and international full-time master’s applicants will be considered for this fellowship.

Fellowship recipients will be notified of their award at the time of admission notification. Note that consideration for this fellowship is independent of other merit-based and need-based awards and can be combined with other awards up to the cost of tuition.

Graduate Assistantships

Graduate Assistants (GAs) are student workers providing academically relevant services such as supervised participation in faculty research projects, teaching support, outreach activities, admissions recruiting, student affairs, and other activities at Penn GSE. GAs are offered a position with a fixed number of hours and hourly wage. These positions are available to both domestic and international students. Students admitted to a program that offers GAs will receive an invitation to apply in their admission letter. Participating programs conduct the GA hiring process independently of admission and scholarship decisions, and students hired as GAs will be notified by their program. 

*Please note that for students in the Higher Education M.S.Ed. program, the Graduate Assistantship process is conducted separately.

Dean's Scholarship

Penn GSE offers the Dean’s Scholarship in the amount of $10,000 to a select group of incoming master’s applicants. Awards will be made based on merit assessed during the faculty review of the admissions application. These scholarships are available to both domestic and international students. Some programs may require additional information or application materials. Please contact your program directly to inquire if any additional information or application is required for this scholarship. The Dean’s Scholarship may be combined with other Penn GSE scholarship offers. Decisions for the Dean’s Scholarship are typically announced in a separate award letter in late April. Please note: the Dean's Scholarship is not available to Programs for Working Professionals or doctoral programs. 

Program-Specific Funding Opportunities

International Educational Development Program (IEDP) Applicants:

  • Penn-UNESCO Fellowships for Developing Country Scholars

Students accepted into the International Educational Development Program (IEDP) may apply to receive one of two full-tuition international fellowships under the Penn GSE–UNESCO Chair, founded in 2012. This fellowship, under the auspices of the International Educational Development Program, is the first of its kind in the U.S. and is designed to support promising professionals devoted to international education in the developing world.

  • Coverdell Fellowship

Returned Peace Corps Volunteers (RPCVs) are encouraged to apply for the Paul D. Coverdell Fellows Program, offered by Penn GSE’s International Educational Development Program. This graduate fellowship program recognizes RPCVs and is a way to extend one’s relationship with the Peace Corps while a student at Penn.

Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program (UTAP) Applicants:

  • Humanities Teaching Fellowship 

The Humanities Teaching Fellowship is intended to support the preparation of teachers in high school English and/or history who are interested in teaching in schools that support students through student-centered approaches and use innovative approaches and tools for learning. Humanities Teaching Fellows must be admitted to the Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program, M.S.Ed. in the Secondary English or Social Studies program. Fellows will be awarded a scholarship of $32,000. Applicants who apply for the high school English or social studies program are automatically considered for this Fellowship at the time of faculty review for admission. Faculty may reach out to request more information regarding your interest in the Fellowship.  Fellowship recipients must commit to completing the Project-Based Learning Certificate (at no additional cost) after finishing the 10-month UTAP program. This certificate does not require you to remain in the Philadelphia area, as the content is offered in a predominately virtual mode.

  • Weiss WW Teaching Fellowship

The Weiss WW Teaching Fellowship seeks to attract talented, committed individuals with backgrounds in the STEM fields—science, technology, engineering, and mathematics—into teaching in high-need Pennsylvania secondary schools. This Fellowship opportunity is open to students in Penn GSE’s Urban Teaching Apprenticeship Program. Each Fellow receives $32,000 from the Institute for Citizens & Scholars and a $10,000 merit-aid scholarship from Penn GSE to complete this master’s degree program. Read more about the Weiss WW Teaching Fellowship at Penn GSE.

 See External Funding Opportunities for additional scholarships available to students interested in the UTAP program. 

Scholarships for Fulbright Fellows

All master’s students admitted to Penn GSE who have been offered a Fulbright Fellowship to be used for their graduate degree will be awarded a $15,000 scholarship. This scholarship can be combined with funding awarded from Fulbright-affiliated organizations. Fulbright awardees should be sure to identify themselves in the graduate application.

Ed.D. Students

Research Assistantships

A limited number of Research Assistantships are awarded to incoming full-time, traditional Ed.D. students who show high academic potential. Packages may include partial tuition support, a living stipend, University health insurance, and a research and teaching apprenticeship.

Ph.D. Students

Dean's Fellowship and Research Apprenticeship

The Dean's Fellowship and Research Apprenticeship provides full funding to Ph.D. students. Support includes tuition and fees, health insurance, and a living stipend. All incoming Ph.D. students receive a fellowship and research apprenticeship package, which covers four years of study and requires that students maintain full-time enrollment. Additional funding is available on a case-by-case basis for those students who wish to continue their research and teaching apprenticeship in the summer months. There is no application for Dean’s Fellowships and Research Apprenticeships; award decisions are made by the academic division based on the application and communicated at the time of the admissions decision.


Additional Funding Opportunities through Penn

Penn Grad Center and Family Center Fellowships

The Graduate Student Center at the University of Penn offers several fellowship opportunities for current graduate students interested in work at the Grad Center or the Family Center. Responsibilities include staffing the centers, overseeing events, and/or supporting programs. Any student who is currently and will be registered as a University of Pennsylvania graduate or professional student during the next academic year is eligible to apply for a Fellow position

Graduate Resident Advisors

Each year, the University hires graduate students to serve as Graduate Associates in the College House system. Duties include counseling undergraduates or graduate students on personal, social, and academic matters and helping to plan activities for residents. Support includes a furnished room and a modest meal plan. Completed applications may be filed at any time, but those arriving before January 31 will be given preference. Please visit the College Houses and Academic Services website for further information and to apply. 

Foreign Language Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowship 

The Foreign Language and Area Studies (FLAS) Fellowship is a tuition scholarship and a living stipend awarded to meritorious undergraduate students and graduate students undergoing training in modern foreign languages and related area or international studies, or with the international aspects of professional or fields of study. FLAS fellowships are funded by the U.S. Department of Education and administered by the University of Pennsylvania’s Title VI National Resource Centers. FLAS awards are available only for specific languages, and are contingent on federal funding. Applicants must be U.S. citizens or permanent residents of the United States. Students receiving FLAS Fellowships must be enrolled in full-time study for the duration of the FLAS award and must take one language course and one related area or international studies course each semester. Awards are made for the Academic Year or Summer. Academic Year Fellows must be admitted to or enrolled in undergraduate, graduate, or professional programs at the University of Pennsylvania. FLAS awards may be used in some cases for students participating in official overseas language programs and in very limited cases for dissertators. Please see the FLAS website for more information and to apply online.

Dolores Zohrab Liebmann Fund Fellowship

Students who have matriculated and are enrolled at Penn GSE may apply to this fellowship that pays tuition plus a stipend of $18,000 for three years. U.S. citizens in any field of study are eligible. The terms require that the Fellow conduct studies entirely within the U.S. and prove financial need. Typically 3 candidates are nominated by the University annually. 


Scholarships for Service

Yellow Ribbon Program 

Penn GSE participates in the Yellow Ribbon program established by the Post-9/11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act of 2008. Penn GSE provides up to 10 matching awards at $10,000 each for eligible students on a first-come-first-serve basis. Eligible students should review the Veterans at Penn site to learn about the procedures required for receiving your benefits, the benefits you are eligible to receive, a frequently asked questions page, and a list of links and other resources to help you get started and find additional information.

Active-Duty Service Members

Penn GSE also welcomes active-duty service members, including service academy members, to apply their tuition benefits towards earning a graduate degree. Many of our programs offer flexible study formats designed for working professionals and distance learners. We strive to accommodate all service branches and are able to execute custom MOUs on a case-by-case basis. Please contact us for more details.

City Year

City Year is an education-focused nonprofit that unites young people of all backgrounds for a year of full-time service to keep students in school and on track to succeed. Partnership with City Year highlights the visions and values of both organizations, integrating the power of knowledge and service in addressing social problems. In recognition of this partnership, Penn GSE will award two annual merit scholarships toward any full-time master’s degree program to selected City Year corps members or alumni who have completed at least one year of service or City Year staff members employed by City Year for at least two years.

Those eligible for the scholarship must identify their City Year affiliation in the designated space on the online application and request a verification letter from the City Year Alumni & Career Services Manager. In order to be considered for the scholarship, prior to March, applicants must have a fully complete admissions application and submit the verification letter. The scholarship will be awarded in April. For more information, please click here.